Cubs @ Dodgers June 28, 2018: Kershaw vs. Quintana

Photo: Stacie Wheeler

The Dodgers head into the afternoon tilt with the Cubs looking to take 3-of-4 from their NLCS foes. Clayton Kershaw is making his second start since returning from the disabled list. The Cubs counter with Jose Quintana.

Cubs
Dodgers
12:10 PM
Los Angeles
CF
Almora
SS
Taylor
2B
Baez
LF
Hernandez
C
Contreras
3B
Turner
1B
Rizzo
RF
Kemp
SS Russell
1B
Muncy
3B
Bote
CF
Bellinger
RF
Happ 2B Forsythe
LF
Schwarber
C
Barnes
P
Quintana (L)
P
Kershaw
(L)

Kershaw was … not great on Saturday against the Mets. He lasted just three innings and gave up five hits, two runs, issued two walks and struck out four. The good news is, his fastball velocity was in the 90-91 MPH range, as opposed to the 87-88 MPH range it was in his May 31 start. Still not where we’re used to it being, but better than “Kershaw is ded” velo. He’s slated for five innings and/or 75 pitches today. Backing him up isn’t the pitcher you’re expecting, though.

Walker Buehler was expected to throw a rehab game for Oklahoma City today. Instead, he’ll be making his “rehab” appearance out of the LA Dodgers’ bullpen. This is their bit now, as Kershaw was supposed to start for OKC last Saturday but didn’t. As long as Buehler gets his work in and comes out healthy, that’s all that matters here.

Quintana, the big trade acquisition by the Cubs last year, hasn’t really been the ace-like pitcher he was with the White Sox in his time with the Baby Bears. He has regressed this season to a 4.26 ERA, 4.37 FIP and seen his strikeout- and walk rates go in the wrong direction. The last time he pitched at Dodger Stadium, it was in Game 1 of the NLCS, when he allowed two runs over five innings. The Dodgers got after him in Game 5 of that series, as they scored six runs in two innings, capped by an Enrique Hernandez grand slam (off Hector Rondon) to give the Dodgers the series win.

Chris Taylor returns to the starting lineup. He hasn’t started a game since June 20 due to a Matt Kemp returns from his 1-game suspension last night. He’s in the No. 4 spot. Hernandez is in left field today, with Kemp sliding to right field, where he has been better (2 defensive runs saved) than he has been in left field (-6 DRS) in about half the defensive innings.

——

The pitching matchups say the Dodgers should sweep, so get ready for 1-2 series against the Rockies.

That’s a lot of starts. #analysis

Give this a quick read. Eric is stepping down as managing editor of True Blue LA, but he’ll still write there. He has been the best at doing this for those 9 1/2 years.

Sure, why not.

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler
Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosts a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He is a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.