Dodgers @ Padres April 17, 2018: Looking for the first series win


The Dodgers finally broke out last night with a commanding 10-3 win in the series opener in San Diego. The offense offensed, Hyun-Jin Ryu was great through six innings and the Dodgers won back-to-back games for the third time this season. Today, they look for their first three-game winning streak and first series win of the season.

7:10 PM
San Diego
Utley C Ellis
Wood (L)
Mitchell (R)

Another night of the Alex Wood velocity watch, as the lefty makes his fourth start of the season. Following a pair of solid outings, Wood got lit up last time out, allowing seven earned runs in 3 2/3 innings against the Oakland A’s. According to Statcast, only 29 of Wood’s 76 pitches were fastballs, and only six of them cracked 90 MPH. He topped out at 90.9 MPH, so that could explain why he threw the fastball so infrequently. On the positive side, Wood has yet to walk a batter in 17 2/3 innings this season.

Matt Kemp is back hitting third after Enrique Hernandez hit there last night. Kemp hit his second home run of the season last night off lefty Robbie Erlin, but was removed in the fifth inning as the Padres started using their right-handed relievers. Despite that, he’s back in the lineup today against a righty.

Bryan Mitchell will make his fourth start for the Padres tonight. He was acquired in the deal that sent Chase Headley to San Diego and helped the Yankees free up salary for Giancarlo Stanton (no I’m not still salty about it). Mitchell has not been very good this year, as he’s allowed eight runs in 13 2/3 innings over his three starts. He has impressively walked 14 batters while striking out only three, so this is a prime night for one of those “no-name pitcher takes a no-hitter into the sixth against the Dodgers” games. Mitchell did put together one nice start so far, as he held the Houston Astros scoreless through 5 2/3 innings despite allowing three hits and six walks. According to FanGraphs, Mitchell has thrown a fastball 62.7 percent of the time this season. He mixes in a curve (20.9 percent) and a cutter (12.9 percent) and flashes a change-up (3.6 percent).

The only change in the lineup for the Padres is at catcher, where old friend A.J. Ellis starts instead of Austin Hedges. This is Ellis’ third time starting against the Dodgers after eight and a half years in LA. Both starts came as a Marlin last season, and Ellis hit two doubles and a single in eight plate appearances.


The Dodgers have been active with their rosters today.

Alec Asher, who was claimed by the Dodgers off Baltimore’s waivers on April 5, is now a member of the Brewers. The two open spots on the 40-man seemed a bit odd, but one of those spots was quickly claimed.

Max Muncy was not on the 40-man, so the Dodgers’ 40-man got back to 39. Muncy appeared in 96 games for the Oakland A’s in 2015 and 2016, posting a .195/.290/.321 triple slash line in 245 plate appearances with five home runs. He spent last season at Triple-A OKC and posted a .309/.414/.491 triple slash line in 379 plate appearances. He primarily played at third base last season, but also saw time at first, second, left field, right field and even tossed 2 1/3 scoreless innings on the mound. In nine games this season, Muncy has only played at first base.

Breyvic Valera will go back to OKC after appearing in the last two games. He drew a walk on Sunday and hit a ball hard right at Hunter Renfroe last night.

Muncy is expected to start tomorrow at third base.


Another roster move happened later, as the Dodgers and Reds made a minor trade.

Zach Neal, who appeared in one game for the Dodgers before being designated for assignment, was traded along with Ibandel Isabel to Cincinnati for Ariel Hernandez.

Isabel was ranked 49th in Dustin’s Top 100. The 23-year-old first baseman has a ton of power, but nothing else really.

Hernandez was also designated for assignment on April 13th. The 26-year-old right-handed reliever appeared in 19 games for the Reds last year and posted a 5.18 ERA and 6.69 FIP. Control seems to be the main issue with him, as he issued 22 walks in 24 1/3 innings. MLB Pipeline had Hernandez as the Reds’ 24th-best prospect following the 2017 season with a 75-grade fastball. It seems like there’s a lot of talent there, and if the Dodgers can teach him how to throw strikes, Hernandez could be a solid bullpen piece moving forward. According to Roster Resource, Hernandez has two option years left.

This move fills up the Dodgers’ 40-man roster.


In injury recovery news, don’t expect to see Justin Turner or Tom Koehler return in the near future.


In our first international signing news of the year:

About Alex Campos

Alex Campos
I've been writing about the Dodgers since I graduated from Long Beach State, where I covered the Dirtbags in my senior year. I'm either very good or very bad at puns.