Pirates @ Dodgers April 26, 2019: Ryu opens the quick home-stand

The Dodgers finally return home for a quick weekend series. They won yesterday afternoon in Chicago, avoiding a Windy City sweep. The Pirates did not avoid a sweep, as they’re currently riding a five-game losing streak after getting swept in a four-game series in Arizona. The Pirates had the best winning percentage in the NL last Saturday, but haven’t won a game since and now sit only a game above .500. Their struggles added some early-season pressure to the Dodgers, as the Diamondbacks are only 0.5 games back in the standings.

Pirates
Dodgers
7:10 p.m.
Los Angeles
2B
Frazier
LF
Pederson
LF
Cabrera
SS
Seager
RF
Polanco
3B
Turner
1B
Bell
RF
Bellinger
3B
Kang
CF
Pollock
C
Cervelli
1B
Muncy
CF
Reynolds 2B Hernández
SS
Tucker
C
Barnes
P
Archer (R)
P
Ryu (L)

Hyun-Jin Ryu makes his second start since returning from the IL. In his first start back, Ryu had a pretty solid outing in Milwaukee. He allowed six hits and a walk in 5 2/3 innings and two runs, both coming on solo homers by Christian Yelich. He’s allowed at least one homer in each of his four starts this season, but has yet to allow more than two runs to score.

Ryu has very little history against the Pirates. The only Pirate he’s faced more than three times is Starling Marte, who is on the IL.

For the Pirates, Chris Archer will make his fifth start of the season. He’s coming off his worst start of the season, a five-inning, three earned run start in San Francisco. After striking out 24 batters in his first three starts of the season, Archer only recorded two strikeouts in SF. Archer’s 2.74 ERA is the second-worst in the Pirates rotation, which has the second-best ERA and third-best FIP in baseball so far this season. The Dodgers are a patient team, but Pirate starters have the second-lowest walk rate in baseball so far this season (6.0 percent).

Archer is an unconventional pitcher, as he throws a slider more than he throws any other pitch. Opponents have a .147 average and a .265 slugging percentage of the slider and the pitch has a 52.9 percent whiff rate. He throws a fastball and a sinker that sit around 93 MPH.

——

Russell Martin had his hurdle to clear today.

He hit in a simulated game and caught a Kenta Maeda bullpen. He’ll be activated this weekend and will start Sunday afternoon.

——

With Rich Hill slated to start Sunday, Ross Stripling‘s time in the rotation has come to an end (for now).

He gives the Dodgers a second potential-long relief arm alongside Julio Urias. He also could be used in a shorter role and shore up the already-shaky bridge to a shaky Kenley Jansen.

——

Tony Cingrani is going on a rehab assignment?

Hard same, Brim. Cingrani allegedly threw 22 2/3 innings last year (I have no recollection of this) and struggled, but he was excellent for half a season after the Dodgers acquired him in 2017.


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.