Dodgers @ Phillies September 21, 2017: Seager sits with sore ankle in series finale

(Via)

The champagne is still on ice and will be shipped back to Los Angeles for the Dodgers (96-56) when they try again to clinch the National League West. With an off-day for the D-backs on Thursday, the earliest the Dodgers can clinch is Friday at home against the Giants. The Phillies (61-91) succeeded in preventing the Dodgers from celebrating in their park. The Fighting Phils are also one win away from a four-game sweep over the Dodgers, who are in danger of dropping their fifth straight. Home-field advantage in the World Series isn’t the most important thing, but it sure is annoying that the Dodgers’ magic number is stalled out at 2 and their lead for best record in MLB over the Indians has dwindled to 1.5 games with 10 games remaining in the regular season.

Dodgers
Phillies
10:05 AM PT
Philadelphia
CF
Taylor
2B
Hernández
3B
Turner
SS
Galvis
1B
Bellinger
RF
Williams
RF
Puig
1B
Hoskins
LF
Granderson
LF
Altherr
2B
Utley
CF
Herrera
C
Grandal C Alfaro
SS
Forsythe
3B
Crawford
P
Maeda (R)
P
Leiter (R)

Kenta Maeda (12-6, 4.21 ERA, 4.01 FIP), still a candidate to pitch out of the bullpen for the Dodgers in the NLDS, looks to bounce back after a shaky three-inning start in San Francisco last time out. The veteran right-hander allowed four runs on four hits, including two home runs, to the rivals nine days ago.

Overall, Maeda is 3-0 with a 3.50 ERA in three career starts vs. the Phillies. He bested the cheesesteak lovers back on April 28 at Dodger Stadium, going seven innings and allowing two runs on five hits and striking out eight. Kenta will have to be very careful pitching to Freddy Galvis who is 4-for-7 (.571) against him with a home run and a double.

Rookie right-hander Mark Leiter (3-6, 4.93 ERA, 5.05 FIP) lost to the Dodgers in his MLB debut, a one-inning relief appearance on April 28 at Dodger Stadium. He pitched a perfect seventh inning, but the Phillies lost 5-3 to L.A. in the early season matchup. Leiter was slotted into the Phillies’ starting rotation in August after injuries piled up.

Leiter has allowed 1.8 home runs per nine innings this season. This is good news for the Dodgers who have had a historic year as far as the long ball.

Hopefully the Dodgers take advantage, but they were frustratingly hitting balls to the warning track seemingly all night in the loss to Philly Wednesday. The game ended fittingly when Odubel Herrera robbed Yasiel Puig with an impressive catch in the top of the ninth inning. That’s how things have been going for the Dodgers who have lost 20 of their last 25 games.

——

Logan Forsythe starts at shortstop for the series finale, giving Corey Seager a chance to rest a tender right ankle. He fouled a ball off his ankle during Wednesday’s loss to the Phils. X-rays were negative, but it’s still concerning considering he’s also been dealing with an elbow issue as well.

It’s pretty blatant that Seager has been struggling, at least due in part to the elbow soreness. He’s hitting .180/.236/.280/.516 with only three extra-base hits in the month of September.

Everyone’s pretty beat up by this time in the season, but not having Seager at full strength isn’t ideal.

About Stacie Wheeler

Stacie Wheeler

Stacie Wheeler, born and raised in So Cal, has been writing about the Dodgers since 2010. She wrote daily as the Co-Editor of Lasorda’s Lair for five long years, and she has also written for Dodgers Nation and Dodger Blue 1958. She currently contributes to The Hardball Times. Stacie graduated from the University Of Southern California with a bachelor’s degree in Cinema-Television. You can also watch her videos on her YouTube channel, DishingUpTheDodgers.