Dodgers @ Diamondbacks April 30, 2018: Everything is awful

Photo: Stacie Wheeler

After yet another loss yesterday, the Dodgers find themselves at 12-15. I’d rant about that here, but Dustin did a very good job covering that this morning. This post came before news broke that Corey Seager would be undergoing Tommy John surgery and will miss the rest of the year. Good thing the Dodgers now have a four-game series against the team with the best record in the National League.

Dodgers
Diamondbacks
6:40 PM
Phoenix
SS
Taylor
LF
Peralta
2B
Utley
RF
Dyson
C
Grandal
1B
Goldschmidt
1B
Bellinger
CF
Pollock
LF
Pederson
3B
Descalso
RF
Verdugo
2B
Owings
CF
Hernández SS Ahmed
3B
Muncy
C
Mathis
P
Stripling (R)
P
Greinke (R)

Ross Stripling gets the start for the Dodgers for … reasons? Brock Stewart, who has started four games at Triple-A OKC this season, was recalled before yesterday’s game. Today would have been Stewart’s turn to pitch on regular rest but the Dodgers opted to go with Stripling, who has been arguably their best relief pitcher so far this season. Stripling hasn’t started a game since the regular season finale last season, when he started a bullpen game and tossed two scoreless innings. He threw three innings four times last season, but hasn’t thrown more than two in an outing this season. I’m not sure why the Dodgers wouldn’t just start Stewart and have Stripling in relief behind him.

With Seager out, the lineup definitely looks a bit different. Chris Taylor starts at short, which might be the permanent move during Seager’s absence. While no player will replace Seager easily, Taylor at short and some combination of Andrew Toles/Enrique Hernandez/Alex Verdugo in center isn’t the worst situation to be in. Hernandez gets center today with Verdugo in right replacing the injured Yasiel Puig. Toles is still not back from a MiLB Disabled List stint for a hamstring injury. Breyvic Valera is back on the roster and on the bench.

Zack Greinke gets the start for Arizona. He and Robbie Ray, who was placed on the DL today with an oblique injury, have been the two worst statistical starters for the Diamondbacks this season. Greinke has a 4.80 ERA in five starts this season, allowing 16 earned runs in 30 innings. However, 14 of those runs have come on the road. At Chase Field, Greinke has allowed eight hits and two runs in two starts. He’s completed seven innings once this season, at home against the Giants on April 19. Greinke held the Dodgers to two runs over the first six innings of his only start against them so far this season, but things unraveled in the seventh when he put two runners on, both of whom scored off T.J. McFarland.

——

The big news today was Seager being placed on the DL.

Seager reportedly underwent an MRI this morning that revealed the bad news.

This is at least semi-promising. Tommy John surgery is less drastic for position players than it is for pitchers, but losing him for this already-terrible season hurts.

We get the benefit of hindsight, but not having any treatment seems questionable at best. Seager’s surgery is scheduled for Friday and will be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache.

——

Tonight’s lineup configuration might be what we see for a good chunk of the year.

On an everyday basis, Taylor to short and Hernandez or some sort of platoon in center seems wise. Here’s a prophetic excerpt from Chad from the Taylor/Zach Lee trade.

In return, the Dodgers addressed their complete dearth of shortstop depth behind Corey Seager on both the major-league roster and the advanced minors. Currently, Enrique Hernandez is the backup shortstop on the Dodgers roster and he’s not a natural there, while the only other semi-viable option at the position in either AAA or AA is Charlie Culberson. Meanwhile, the best prospect at the position for the Dodgers (besides 2016 first-rounder Gavin Lux) is probably 18-year-old Brendon Davis in A-ball. So yeah, suffice to say the Dodgers needed a backup shortstop, and it seems like they got a decent one in Taylor.

Little did Chad know that Taylor would turn into the everyday center fielder with above-average defense out there. As an infield prospect, Taylor was always rated highly for his defense. He’s a bit out of practice as an infielder, but should be able to keep the Dodgers afloat at short. Hernandez is solid in center, so most of the question marks surrounding him will be how he does as an everyday player offensively.

——

One thing that could help ease the pain of losing Seager is the return of Justin Turner.

Reports from last week indicated Turner could begin a rehab assignment as early as this coming weekend. Hopefully they don’t try rushing Turner back too quickly, but getting his bat back in the lineup could go a long way in keeping the Dodgers from completely collapsing.

——

Stupid me, I woke up this morning expecting to spend the whole thread bitching about Stripling starting over Stewart.

About Alex Campos

Alex Campos
I'm a writer that has blogged at a whole bunch of places about a whole bunch of sports. I was most recently writing for Chavez Ravine Fiends, but was also the former editor at Dodgers Way. I graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Marketing. At Long Beach, I covered the Dirtbags in the 2014 season as an assistant sports editor at the Daily 49er.