Dodgers @ Brewers Aug. 17, 2022: Cat Man vs. Dodger Killer

After a tough 5-4 loss last night, the Dodgers are back at it for the third game in this 4-game series — also a potential playoff preview.

Tony Gonsolin gets the ball for the Dodgers tonight. He’s coming off a couple strong outings against the Padres and Royals — 2-0, 0.77 ERA, 2.60 FIP — in his last two starts. He’s an eye-popping 14-1 on the season. I know, lolz pitcher wins, but it’s still staggering to see that record.

He’ll be opposed by Dodger killer Eric Lauer, who’s 6-0 with a 2.56 ERA in 52 2/3 career innings against LA. But, he’s a slightly version of the Lauer we’ve seen in the past. He’s a little more home run prone this year (1.67 HR/9), but he has also seen his average velocity tick up on all fastball, with most of his other offerings remaining about the same. His slider is 6th-best in terms of runs above average at FanGraphs (Gonsolin’s is 4th), but his curveball, cutter and changeup get hit pretty hard. I’d expect a heavy diet of heaters and sliders.

Trayce Thompson gets the start in center field tonight in place of Cody Bellinger, while Hanser Alberto is in for Gavin Lux. Austin Barnes is back and giving Will Smith a breather.

The Brewers certainly have a type in their lineup. Keston Hiura is a guy I thought was going to be quite good — and it was looking that way after his rookie season (.303/.368/.570). However, since then, he has struggled mightily — .204/.297/.391 with an ugly 38.4 K%. If you’re looking for some more recent data (i.e., arbitrary endpoints), he’s hitting .306/.393/.633 over his last 17 games (56 plate appearances).

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Here’s some quick news.

Dellin Betances was in the org and struggled mightily. He was released and subsequently retired. Tough break for the former electric reliever.

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With the injuries and workload, a 6-man rotation may not be the worst thing. Might be nice to have Mitch White, though. Guess we’ll just have to settle for Dustin May.

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“Bruiser,” which is a far superior nickname than “Bazooka” for Brusdar Graterol, should be back soon.

Save us, Yency Almonte. You’re our only hope.

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First pitch is set for 5:10 p.m. Pacific time. The game is on FS1, if you’re outside the coverage area.

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.