D’backs @ Dodgers March 30, 2019: Maeda starts as the Dodgers look to get back on track

It took two (2) days into the 2019 season for this team to become annoying. Opening Day was a great showing, and they looked good to start last night’s game. Joe Kelly had a rough Dodger debut and like four hours later the Dodgers had their first loss of the season. Not much turnaround time, as they’re right back at it tonight for game three of the four-game series.

DiamondbacksDodgers
6:10 PMLos Angeles
CF DysonLF Pederson
3B EscobarSS Seager
LF Peralta3B Turner
RF JonesRF Bellinger
1B LambCF Pollock
2B Marte1B Muncy
SS Ahmed2B Taylor
C AvilaC Barnes
P Godley (RHP)P Maeda (RHP)

Kenta Maeda makes his 2019 debut for the Dodgers. He made 20 starts last season before being moved into relief, posting a 3.85 ERA in 107 2/3 innings as a starter. Maeda made only one start against Arizona last season and it was one of his worst of the season. He needed 65 pitches to record eight outs before being pulled from the game, and his own throwing error in the third inning led to a four-run inning, with three of those runs being unearned.

The Dodgers roll out a more-typical lineup against a right-handed starter for Arizona. Chris Taylor gets the start at second over Enrique Hernandez, who started there in each of the first two games. Justin Turner is in the lineup, which is good news as he was hit by a pitch in last night’s game.

Zack Godley takes the ball for Arizona today. The Dodgers are currently undefeated in 2019 against right-handed pitchers named Zack, so this feels like a good matchup. Control was Godley’s Achilles’ heel last year, as he led the National League in hit batsmen and wild pitches. Godley struggled with control in his first stint in the Majors in 2015, but put together back-to-back years with walk rates better than 9 percent before a 10.2 percent walk rate in 2018. Godley gave the Dodgers trouble both times they faced off in 2018, as the Dodgers combined to score two runs and nine hits in 13 innings against him. Godley took the loss against the Dodgers in Arizona, when Hyun-Jin Ryu tore his groin and five relievers combined to allow four hits in 6 2/3 innings to secure a Dodger win. Godley had one of his best outings of the season in his other start against the Dodgers, as he outdueled Clayton Kershaw over seven innings and Arizona broke the game open against the Dodger bullpen.

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Kershaw threw a 50-pitch bullpen session today and seems to have survived.

In a two-game sample size, Dodger starters have been pretty dominant so far this season. Ryu and Ross Stripling have combined to throw 11 1/3 innings and have allowed one run total.

They also have another starter on the mend, as Rich Hill is scheduled to throw a bullpen next week. His return, along with Kershaw’s, could move Stripling and Julio Urias out of the rotation and strengthen a bullpen that has struggled to begin the season.

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The Dodgers will have a new left side of the infield tomorrow, as both Corey Seager and Turner will get scheduled days off against RHP Luke Weaver, who’ll be making his Diamondback debut after being acquired in the Paul Goldschmidt trade this offseason.

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.