Giants @ Dodgers July 20, 2021: Josiah Gray Makes His Debut

After a 2-7 loss in the first of four games against the Giants (59-34), the Dodgers (58-37) are now two games back behind San Francisco in the NL West. At the same time, they still own the second best record in the league. Old friend Alex Wood will be on the mound for the Giants tonight, as Darien Núñez will be the left-handed opener prior to Josiah Gray making his MLB Debut.

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7:10 PM Los Angeles
1B Wade Jr. (L) SS Taylor
C Posey 3B Turner
RF Yastremski (L) 2B Muncy (L)
3B Flores 1B Pujols
LF Dickerson (L) LF Pollock
2B Solano CF Bellinger (L)
CF Tauchman (L) C Barnes
SS Estrada RF McKinstry (L)
P Wood (R) P Núñez (L)

Overall, the Dodgers have the fourth ranked offense by wRC+ at 111, while the Giants are sixth at 108. Naturally, it looks similarly with OPS, as the Giants and Dodgers are both tied for fourth at .762. Both teams are better against right-handed pitching, but both still manage solid performance against left-handed pitching. The Dodgers own the eleventh ranked wRC+ against left-handed pitching at 102, while the Giants are at ninth at 105. Granted, the Giants will only be facing the left-handed Núñez for a couple innings at most.

Max Muncy went one for two last night with with a solo home run and two walks. This season he now has a 307 wRC+ and a 1.635 OPS against the Giants with eight home runs in nine games. At the same time, Buster Posey has a 1.072 OPS against the Dodgers this season with three home runs in eight games. Unfortunately, Mookie Betts is still out with right hip irritation.

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Alex Wood is having a very solid season for San Francisco, with a 3.67 ERA, 3.75 FIP, and a 1.15 WHIP over 83.1 innings. Last time out he faced the Cardinals, allowing one run on three hits and two walks while striking out six over seven innings. He’s also in good form, as in his last three starts he has a 2.08 ERA, 2.02 FIP, and a 0.98 WHIP, with 22 strikeouts in 17.1 innings. He’s faced the Dodgers twice this season, going six innings both times, allowing a total of six runs over 12 innings. That’s a 4.50 ERA with a .960 OPS allowed.

Núñez has thrown just four innings for the Dodgers this year over three appearances. His season high in pitches thus far is 37 in a two inning stint during his debut. Overall he’s allowed two earned runs in his four innings pitched, but he’s looked like he can contribute at the Major League level despite that.

After a shoulder setback earlier in the season akin to that of Tony Gonsolin, Gray has a 2.87 ERA in 15.2 innings in Triple-A OKC this season, with 22 strikeouts and two walks. Gray is the top pitching prospect in the Dodgers’ system, and there’s a couple places you can read about him. One is an excerpt from FanGraphs in their “2021 Top 100 Prospects“, ranked at 29th overall. Another is MLB’s Top 100, where he’s ranked 42nd.

However, the best and most comprehensive is Dustin’s piece from earlier in the year. Read that if you’d like to know more about the talented 23 year-old.

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Once again, this is good news. Eventually, the Dodgers will need Clayton Kershaw back. It looks like he’s progressing well.

This sounds painful, hopefully getting Corey Seager back soon can help with offensive production should Betts miss more time.

Either way, it sounds like he’s very close to returning.

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Edwin Uceta was reinstated and sent down to Oklahoma City, Andy Burns was designated for assignment, and Scott Alexander once again hits the 10-day Injured List.

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This is great. All these women are exceptionally smart and great at what they do. I do think it’s a little disappointing they get to call Baltimore vs. Tampa Bay, likely the least watched matchup possible. ESPN has Baltimore at 27th overall in average attendance, while Tampa Bay is at 29th. I would expect their viewership is similar.

The two best teams in baseball, the Giants and the Dodgers play tonight. Two major markets in New York and Philadelphia play tonight. The Padres and Braves play. The only game worse than the Baltimore game tonight is the Rangers vs. the Tigers.

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First pitch is at 7:10 PM PDT on SNLA and is also the MLB.TV Free Game of the Day.

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!