Padres @ Dodgers April 24, 2021: Snell vs. Bauer – Round 2

After yet another disappointing loss, the Dodgers (14-6) look to take game three of this four game series against the Padres (12-10), as they try and avoid their first series loss of the season. The team has now dropped four of their last five, including three in a row to San Diego. The Padres had lost five of their last six prior to this series, where they have obviously now won two in a row.

Trevor Bauer will look to hold off the Padres’ offense long enough for the Dodgers to hopefully generate some of their own. Blake Snell will be on the mound for San Diego trying to pitch into the sixth inning.

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6:10 PM Los Angeles
SS Tatis Jr. RF Betts
CF Grisham (L) SS Seager (L)
3B Machado 3B Turner
1B Hosmer (L) C Smith
RF Myers LF Pollock
2B Cronenworth (L) 1B Muncy (L)
LF Profar (S) 2B Neuse
C Caratini (S) CF Peters
P Snell (L) P Bauer (R)

This thread is long enough already so I’ll spare you all the details – the offense was awful once again. They were facing one of the best pitchers in baseball with Yu Darvish, which is fine. If you struggle, struggle against an ace at least. They’re now hitting just .128/.238/.244 in their last six games, scoring a total of just eleven runs. Over the same stretch, Anthony Rizzo of the Cubs has scored nine runs on his own while the Cubs have amassed 55 runs total. The offense has gone through a tough stretch of poor situational hitting, impressively bad BABIP, elite defensive plays against them, and strong pitching performances from the other teams. They’ll figure it out. DJ Peters will be making his first career start as the fifth starting center fielder for the Dodgers in just 21 games. Sheldon Neuse will once again start at second base.

The only difference in the lineup for the Padres is Jurickson Profar starting in left field over Tommy Pham, who got up a little gingerly last night after a sliding play in the outfield.

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Here’s how Bauer and Snell matchup once again.

Outside of his first start in Coors Field, over his last three starts Bauer has posted a 1.37 ERA, 2.69 FIP, and a 0.56 WHIP, striking out 26 in 19.2 innings. He’s allowed just 10 hits on the year, and with his relatively low walk rate he features the fourth lowest WHIP in the game, trailing only Corbin Burnes, Jacob deGrom, and Joe Musgrove. Musgrove threw a no hitter, while the other two are setting unprecedented records. Bauer went six innings last time out, allowing just one run on a solo shot to Jake Cronenworth. He set the team up for a win, but a few disappointing performances out of the bullpen cost him and the team a win. Hopefully he can repeat his performance and outduel Snell once again.

For Snell, outside of his first start (his best) of the season, he’s made three starts with a 5.91 ERA, 5.07 FIP, and a 1.41 WHIP. Of 109 starters who’ve logged a minimum of 15 innings, Snell is 15th with a strong 34.3% strikeout rate, but also has the 8th highest walk rate at 14.3%. This translates to 24 strikeouts and 10 walks in his 15.1 innings pitched. Last time out, he allowed two runs on two hits over five innings while striking out seven. Based on their recent offense, two runs through five innings might be a blessing.

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With Corey Knebel going on the IL for months after a lat injury sustained last night, the Dodgers lost one of their hopeful high leverage guys. This puts more pressure on Blake Treinen, Brusdar Graterol, and most importantly, Kenley Jansen. We’ll look at it more as the trade deadline approaches in July, but it’s likely that the team will be targeting potential high leverage guys this season.

Joe Kelly wasn’t likely to be a super high leverage reliever, but at this point he’s at least a proven consistent major league reliever, something the Dodgers are quickly running out of. Jimmy Nelson is currently the most likely guy who can make a push for a higher leverage role. The team likes Dennis Santana (as do I), but he hasn’t looked sharp in his opportunities this far.

Tony Gonsolin seems like he’s making progress at least.

In addition, Zach McKinstry is expected to miss more than the minimum ten days with his oblique strain, while Gavin Lux is expected back on Monday.

When things are going well, there isn’t much to write about or mention in news and updates. Unfortunately that’s not currently the case.

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While ideally without injuries the team wouldn’t have to call up so many players this early in the season, the silver lining is that it’s great for guys to get their first opportunities in the Majors. The Dodgers will likely snap this streak soon and be on a great pace for the remainder of the season, so even though things seem depressing right now, for guys like Luke Raley and Peters, this is likely one of the best moments of their careers. Years and years of work to finally get to this point. It’s great.

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First pitch is at 6:10 PM PT on SNLA.

About Allan Yamashige

Just a guy living in Southern California, having a good time writing about baseball. Hated baseball practice as a kid, but writing about it rules. Thanks for reading!