Dodgers @ Padres August 27, 2019: Dodgers look to even up series behind Buehler

Somebody, cover third base. We know a dumb mistake like that can lose a single game or an entire series. The Dodgers (86-47) look to bounce back after the frustrating one-run loss to the Padres (61-69) at Petco Park Monday night.

The Dodgers are in risk of losing a third straight game for the first time this month. They’re 15-8 with a 117 wRC+ and have slugged to the tune of .508 with 46 home runs in August. They’re still back-and-forth with the Yankees (86-47) for best record in baseball. Going into Tuesday’s contest in San Diego, they have the same record.

Dodgers
Padres
7:10 p.m.
San Diego
RF
Pederson
2B
Garcia
3B
Muncy
LF
Naylor
CF
Pollock
3B
Machado
1B
Bellinger
1B
Hosmer
SS
Seager
RF
Renfroe
LF
Beaty
C
Mejia
C
Smith CF Margot
2B
Hernandez
SS
Urias
P
Buehler (R)
P
Quantrill (R)

Walker Buehler (10-3, 3.16 ERA, 2.90 FIP) makes his 25th start of the year. He settled down at home to pitch seven shutout innings against the Blue Jays his last time out, but his previous start in Miami was a four-inning five-run disaster. Buehler’s ERA on the road is over two points higher than at home. At Dodger Stadium, in 12 starts, Buehler’s strikeout-to-walk ratio is a dominant 14.57. In 12 road starts, he’s struck out a lot less and walked more (3.79 K/BB).

Buehler’s pitched well against the Padres with record of 3-0, 0.82 ERA and 0.545 WHIP in three career starts (22 IP). This will be Buehler’s first start at Petco Park. Manuel Margot hit a home run off Buehler earlier this month at Dodger Stadium. It was the only home run Buehler has allowed this month and the only run Buehler allowed in the 15-strikeout one-run complete game against the Padres.

24-year old rookie right-hander Cal Quantrill (6-4, 3.32 ERA, 3.90 FIP) takes the mound for the Padres in his second career start against the Dodgers. When he matched up against Buehler and the Dodgers the first time on August 9 in LA, Quantrill allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits in a five-inning loss.

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Upon Russell Martin‘s return from the bereavement list, Austin Barnes was optioned back to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Barnes had one double and a strikeout in his three plate appearances during his brief return to the big club.

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Justin Turner‘s heating up, OPSing 1.055 over the last two weeks with a strong August slashline of .325/.393/.663 with eight home runs in 80 at-bats.

He got so hot with the home plate umpire after he struck out to end the game, he received a fine and suspension for the brush-up with the ump.

Cody Bellinger is cold, and his August numbers (.226/.301/.571) show us that. He’s still hit eight homers this month, but he’s also struck out a lot (21 K in 84 at-bats).

Dodger pitchers allowed 20 runs in those four games, and the offense only scored eight runs. One of those games was the 10-2 Yankees blowout of the Dodgers on Friday night, but still a bit of a bump for this team here in the later part of August.

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The offense, defense and pitching all need to pull it together over the last 29 games. The division looks to be a wrap, and September call-ups will provide some reinforcements soon, but these sloppy mistakes can’t happen in the postseason.

This mini slump is frustrating. The only thing we can hope for is that the offense doesn’t clam up in October, the bullpen doesn’t give up big late-inning dongs, and they cover third base when it really counts.

About Stacie Wheeler

Stacie Wheeler
Stacie Wheeler, born and raised in So Cal, has been writing about the Dodgers since 2010. She wrote daily as the co-editor of Lasorda's Lair for five long years, and she has also written for Dodgers Nation, Dodger Blue 1958 and The Hardball Times. She currently contributes to True Blue LA. Stacie graduated from the University Of Southern California with a bachelor's degree in Cinema-Television. You can also watch her videos on her YouTube channel, DishingUpTheDodgers.