As everyone surely expected, the Dodgers (led by Joey Gallo and Cody Bellinger) beat up on Cy Young frontrunner Sandy Alcantara yesterday and completed a sweep against Miami. The Dodgers have won literally 70 percent of the games they’ve played this season and still have an 18 game lead in the NL West, with the division-clinching magic number down to 23.
Today, the Dodgers open up a series against the Brewers, who they haven’t seen in like four whole days. The two teams squared off in a four-game set in Milwaukee starting last Monday, with each team taking two games. In the three games since, the Dodgers outscored Miami 19-4 in three games while Milwaukee lost two of three at Wrigley.
|7:10 PM||Los Angeles|
|LF||Yelich (L)||1B||Freeman (L)|
|C||Narvaez (L)||CF||Bellinger (L)|
|P||Lauer (L)||P||Urias (L)|
Julio Urias starts again against the Brewers. Urias labored a bit, despite allowing only four hits and two walks in five shutout innings. However, his 94 pitches was tied for the third most Urias has thrown in a game this season. Urias’ 2.40 ERA is the sixth lowest in baseball among qualified starters and third in the NL, only behind Alcantara and new ERA leader Tony Gonsolin (probably beneficial that he doesn’t face the Dodger offense). The Dodgers have won each of Urias’ last 11 starts, with Urias picking up the decision in 10 of them. Urias had his worst start of the season in Chicago on July 10 (five runs and three hits in two innings). Since then, Urias has allowed four runs in 38 innings spread over six starts.
Opposing Urias is former nemesis Eric Lauer. Lauer has a 4.11 ERA/4.42 FIP in five Major League seasons, but has had a lot of success against the Dodgers. In 10 career starts against the Dodgers, Lauer is 6-1 with a 2.56 ERA, his lowest ERA against any team he’s seen five or more times. That loss came in his start against the Dodgers last Wednesday, after he allowed two runs (both solo homers) in seven innings.
Lauer has been a bit homer-prone this season. He’s allowed 24 in 22 starts, the second most in the NL and third most in all of baseball. He’s allowed at least one homer in 15 of his 22 starts and has allowed multiple six times.
Bellinger gets the start against a lefty, batting ninth and starting in center. That’s the only really notable thing about the lineup, which is otherwise pretty standard.
Max Muncy clearly wants to be a Dodger.
The Dodgers had a $13M team option for Muncy in 2023, but instead signed him to a 13.5M contract for next season with a team option for 2024.
Muncy has really turned the corner after a nightmarish start to the season. Since August 1, Muncy has homered seven times in 16 games and a 1.185 OPS. He’s beginning to look a lot more like himself, which is a scary addition to a lineup that already has five regulars with an OPS over .800.
Clayton Kershaw threw a sim game today.
He’ll throw another one in Miami later this week and could be ready to return without going off on a rehab assignment. It’s hard to see any of the current starters getting bumped out of the rotation, so maybe a six-man rotation to close out the season barring injury?
The Dodgers just got out of a six-man rotation.
Ryan Pepiot allowed two runs in a career-high six innings yesterday, but was optioned. Brusdar Graterol is back after missing the last five weeks with shoulder inflammation. Graterol made four rehab appearances and allowed one hit and one walk in 3 2/3 innings.
First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM PT and will be shown on Sportsnet LA.