Rays @ Dodgers July 27, 2016: Some eyes on Matt Moore

The Dodgers wrap up this quick 2-game series with the Rays after defeating future Dodger Chris Archer last night.

12:10 p.m. PT
Los Angeles
2B  Forsythe  LF  Kendrick
SS Miller  SS Seager
3B Longoria  3B Turner
LF Dickerson RF Van Slyke
RF Souza 1B Gonzalez
1B Morrison 2B Taylor
C Maile CF Pederson
CF Kiermaier C Ellis
Moore (L)
McCarthy (R)

If all eyes were on Archer last night (and damn, he was good), then some eyes will be on Matt Moore today. This is the second time the Dodgers have faced Moore, and the first was on May 3 when they tagged him for seven runs in 4 1/3 innings (including a monster home run from platoon player Joc Pederson). Since then, he’s been fine: 4.03 ERA, 6.2 innings per start, 18.1 K%, 7.0 BB%, but he’s hardly the pitcher he was in the first couple seasons of his career (also, notably, before Tommy John surgery).

When he was a prospect, prospect lists began with Mike Trout and Bryce Harper at 1-2 or 2-1, but Moore was always No. 3. While he isn’t that kind of pitcher anymore, he’s still a serviceable starter. The price to acquire him would be far less than it would for Archer, but would it even make sense? He’s basically a younger version of Scott Kazmir with fewer strikeouts (and walks, to be fair). If the Dodgers grab another starter, I’m not sure they need another guy with a No. 3 ceiling but more likely a No. 4/5 floor.


Yasiel Puig is still out, and he hasn’t played since injuring his right hamstring on Friday in St. Louis. Here we are five days later and he still isn’t on the disabled list, so this just marks another in the long line of questionable decisions by the Dodgers when it comes to putting players on the disabled list. They’re intentionally playing with a short bench and Puig has a history of hamstring injuries — including one earlier this season. Putting him on the DL isn’t going to adversely affect him, his trade value or the team. It’s better to be safe when it comes to a guy who, to date, has dealt with chronic hamstring issues. It’s just baffling.

Adrian Gonzalez is dropped to the fifth spot in the lineup in favor of batting Scott Van Slyke in the cleanup spot. I guess that’s OK, but Gonzalez has been hitting better of late. Chris Taylor draws the start at second base. That makes sense, but it’s still odd to see him batting sixth. And Pederson also gets another shot at Moore, as he starts in center field.


With the dearth of quality starting pitchers, I’d be shocked if the Rays don’t trade any of their starters. I could see them holding Archer until the offseason, but if they don’t move Moore, it’s a mistake (provided they get quality offers, which they will/have). Jake Odorizzi is better than Moore but not as good as Archer. He could go either way. Still, I have a sneaking suspicion Archer ends up with the Dodgers before the deadline.

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About Dustin Nosler

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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.