Angels @ Dodgers July 8, 2023: Dodgers look to end the first half with a season sweep of the Angels

Dodger Stadium Entrance
Photo by: Cody Bashore

The Dodgers continued their recent dominance of the Angels with an 11-4 victory last night. It was their ninth straight victory against Anaheim and made the Dodgers one of seven teams with 50 wins entering the final day of the first half. Four other teams have a chance to go into the break with 50 wins, and the Dodgers have a chance for their fourth straight win to keep pace with the Diamondbacks (who walked off Pittsburgh earlier) with a win in the first half finale.

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6:10 P.M. Los Angeles
DH Ohtani (L) RF Betts
RF Renfroe 1B Freeman (L)
CF Moniak (L) C Smith
LF Adell DH Martinez
1B Moustakas (L) 3B Muncy (L)
3B Escobar (S) SS Rojas
C Thaiss (L) 2B Vargas
2B Rengifo (S) CF Outman (L)
SS Velazquez (S) LF Deluca
P Detmers (L) P Vesia (L)

Alex Vesia gets the start tonight as the opener for Michael Grove, who is expected to pitch the bulk innings. Vesia’s been good in his return to the Majors, as he worked a perfect ninth for the save in the finale against the Pirates and struck Shohei Ohtani out in three pitches to close Tony Gonsolin‘s book after relieving him for the final out of the seventh.

Grove is expected to be the bulk boi today, but last time he was supposed to start against the Angels Allan wrote a whole thing about him and then he didn’t pitch (gj Allan). Grove made five appearances in June, and in four of them he allowed exactly four runs. The other came against the Astros, where Grove allowed a walk in two otherwise perfect innings. Grove had a nice outing against Pittsburgh to start this homestand, as he outdueled Mitch Keller on Monday and allowed five hits and a run over four innings. He did issue two walks and he hit a batter, but he worked out of some trouble and most of the damage against him came in one inning.

Reid Detmers gets the ball for the Angels to close out the second half. I wrote about Detmers for the second game of the series in Anaheim, where his numbers didn’t look very pretty but he’d started to turn it around before that game. He had a 5.15 ERA following his start on June 1 but in five starts since he’s allowed only five runs in 31 2/3 innings, lowering his season ERA to 3.75. That includes arguably his best start of the season which came against the Dodgers, where he tossed seven shutout innings and only allowed two singles and a walk as he struck out eight. Detmers helped the Dodgers out in his last start, as he held the Diamondbacks to two runs and three hits over six innings in a 5-2 Angel win.

Mookie Betts returns to the outfield with Miguel Vargas getting the start at second. Dave Roberts seemed less committed to letting Vargas work out his struggles in the Majors, which could open up second for Mookie more often. James Outman gets the start in center against a lefty, and Jonny Deluca starts in left.


Chris Taylor could be nearing a return.

Taylor played at the Dodger complex in Arizona and could be back when games resume on Friday.


The Dodgers haven’t set their rotation to begin the second half, but did name a starter for Friday.

Clayton Kershaw threw off the mound and could be back for the Mets series. Julio Urias will start the first game of the series on Friday (on Apple TV Plus).


First pitch is scheduled for 6:10 PM PT and will be shown on SportsNet LA.

About Alex Campos

I've been writing about the Dodgers since I graduated from Long Beach State, where I covered the Dirtbags in my senior year. I'm either very good or very bad at puns.