Athletics @ Dodgers August 3, 2023: Urias and the Dodgers look for their first 3-game sweep since May

The A’s are bad, folks. The Dodgers have outscored the A’s 17-4 in the first two games of this series after a 10-1 drubbing last night. Lance Lynn had a promising start to his Dodger career on Tuesday and Tony Gonsolin turned in a serviceable start yesterday, allowing a run over five innings. Oakland has been exactly what two struggling starters have needed, and tonight the Dodgers start another pitcher in need of a vintage performance.

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7:10 PM Los Angeles
DH Bride RF Betts
2B Gelof 1B Freeman (L)
RF Laureano DH Smith
LF Rooker 2B Rosario
SS A. Díaz 3B Muncy (L)
3B J. Diaz LF Taylor
CF Bleday (L) CF Hernández
C Langeliers SS Rojas
1B Soderstrom (L) C Barnes
P Sears (L) P Urias (L)

Julio Urias gets the ball for the Dodgers today. His last start against Toronto was an up-and-down one. He looked real rough in the first (which isn’t a surprise), allowing a double and a single before a sac fly scored the games first run. He allowed another single but got an inning-ending double play to escape the threat. After cruising in the second inning, he started the third with a hit-by-pitch and allowed a two-run dong. It looked like another bad start, but Urias was able to get through six without any more runs scored. He did allow baserunners in every inning other than the second, but was able to pitch around trouble and kept the Dodgers in the game (until the bullpen blew it, but then the Blue Jays bullpen blew it even harder). It’s been a rough year overall for Urias, who got his ERA back down below 5.00. His July was real Jekyll and Hyde, as he had three solid six-inning outings and two extremely poor outings (five runs in three innings, eight runs in five innings). It hasn’t been the best contract year for Urias, but the lack of deadline moves heightens the need for him to turn it around. A start against Oakland could help him get off to a strong start in August. As a team, they’ve been slightly better against lefties than righties. Their team OPS against lefties (.683) would be the 25th-lowest OPS among qualified batters, and their team OPS against righties (.654) would be tied for 12th-lowest.

JP Sears starts for the A’s, which is unfortunate for me as I googled him and discovered there is a conservative YouTuber of the same name. Thoughts and prayers for my algorithm. Sears has a 4.09 ERA this season, which is the best among A’s starters by a decent amount (Paul Blackburn‘s 4.83 is second-best). He’s actually been steady for the A’s, as he’s only failed to complete five innings in four of his 21 starts. He started July with his best start of the season, as he shut the Tigers out for 7 1/3 innings in a 1-0 Oakland victory. His last start was also pretty good, as Sears held the Rockies to one run and four hits over five innings at Coors. Sears leads the Majors with 12 hit batsmen, which is odd as he also has the 11th-best walk rate among qualified starters (5.3 percent). Most of his struggles stem from the 25 home runs he’s allowed, which is tied for the second-most in baseball.

Sears has a four-pitch mix and throws a four-seamer 51.1 percent of the time and averages 92.9 MPH with it. Baseball Savant had him with a curveball in 2022, but that’s been replaced with a sweeper that he throws 25.2 percent of the time. He’s thrown a changeup 13.5 percent of the time and a slider 10.2 percent of the time.

J.D. Martinez remains out of the lineup with Will Smith getting the start at DH with Austin Barnes behind the plate.


Clayton Kershaw threw a bullpen today.

He threw four innings and it went well. He’s gonna throw another bullpen but could be back in the rotation next week.

Walker Buehler will throw a bullpen in San Diego this weekend.

He’ll throw tomorrow and could be going on a rehab assignment in the near future. His goal of returning in early September could be in play.

Martinez remains out today and won’t play tomorrow.

They’re hoping to have him back in the lineup Sunday in San Diego.


Important content.

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First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 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.