Marlins @ Dodgers May 15, 2021: Dodgers try to win and avoid more injuries

The Dodgers (21-17) have now won three games in a row after an interesting 9-6 win last night against the Marlins (17-21). This was at the expense of AJ Pollock, who like a true Dodger is placed on the IL with a strained hamstring. I almost wrote about it in the thread yesterday but didn’t want to curse it, but whenever you decide to bring a player back after a hamstring issue is too soon. It’s always too soon.

Trevor Bauer is on the mound tonight against the big right-handed Jordan Holloway, as the Dodgers look for their fourth consecutive win, and second consecutive series win. Hopefully they can do that without having to add someone else to the Injured List. Also Albert Pujols is set to be a Dodger next week.

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6:10 PM Los Angeles
SS Rojas RF Betts
1B Aguilar SS Seager (L)
LF Dickerson (L) 3B Turner
RF Cooper 1B Muncy (L)
2B Díaz (L) C Smith
3B Anderson CF Taylor
C León (S) LF Beaty (L)
CF Sierra (L) 2B Lux (L)
P Holloway (R) P Bauer (R)

The Dodgers run out a pretty similar lineup as yesterday with just a couple changes. Naturally, Pollock will not be in left as Matt Beaty takes his place. Will Smith will start over Austin Barnes, who doubled yesterday and now has contributed enough offense for a week. The red-hot Max Muncy continues at first base while Mookie Betts and Corey Seager look to work their way back to respectable batting averages.

The Marlins offense still isn’t great, but they figured out Clayton Kershaw yesterday (kind of) which is an impressive feat. They ended the night with eight hits, with six of those off of Kershaw. After that they managed only three baserunners, all off the struggling Dennis Santana. They also struck out against Kershaw eleven times which doesn’t bode well for them against Bauer who leads the Dodgers in strikeouts.

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Here’s how the pitching matchup looks tonight between Bauer and Holloway.

Bauer is coming off a decent start against the Angels where he went six innings allowing two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out nine. Despite the decent start, he took the loss as the team was only able to mount one run against Jose Quintana in 2021, who currently has a 9.00 ERA. With the team looking like their offense might’ve figured something out as of late, he looks for his fourth win of the season with a little run support. Outside of his first outing of the season in Coors Field, he hasn’t given up more than two runs in a single start. His 34.7% strikeout rate is ninth in the league amongst starting pitchers with at least thirty innings pitched. His WHIP of 0.81 is sixth in baseball while his 2.50 ERA is 18th. Outside of that start at Coors, he features a 2.05 ERA, while the remainder of his other stats remain the same, such as his 0.82 WHIP, 33.9% strikeout rate and 3.31 FIP. Going into this start he’s fifth in the league in strikeouts at 67, trailing the usual suspects of Max Scherzer, Gerrit Cole, Shane Bieber, and Tyler Glasnow (Jacob deGrom has only made six starts).

With Holloway, the Dodgers will be facing another hard throwing right-hander. He is averaging 95.0 MPH with his fastball this season, and is throwing a mid 80’s slider 47.4% of the time. He’s made only one start this year with his other five outings coming in relief. In that start he went 3.2 innings against the Diamondbacks allowing three earned runs on five hits and three walks while striking out only one. He’s gone more than two innings in his five other appearances, so the Marlins are likely looking to get a handful of innings from him after using five relievers last night.

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Hopefully this helps explain why Edwin Rios had a wRC+ of 18 and .354 OPS this season over 60 plate appearances after two strong seasons at 145 and 161 wRC+ (although small sample sizes).

Hamstrings are the worst. Edwin Uceta has a 4.15 ERA over 4.1 innings this season which makes him a top five reliever on the team if he’s in the bullpen.

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First pitch is at 6:10 PM PST 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!