Rangers @ Dodgers June 13, 2024: Dodgers turn to a bullpen game in hopes of a series win against the defending champs

(Photo: Cody Bashore)

The Dodger offense was predictably flat last night after a 15-run outburst on Tuesday. Walker Buehler pitched fine enough, but a bad tag on a would-be caught stealing and a Cavan Biggio error set the stage for a Corey Seager three-run bomb. The Dodgers had a pair of runners on in the ninth and Jason Heyward hit a double that Leody Taveras bobbled in center, but Andy Pages ran through a stop sign and was thrown out at home for the final out. It ruined the set up for a Biggio walk-off hit in his Dodger debut and now the Dodgers need a win in the rubber match to take two of three from the Rangers.

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7:10 PM Los Angeles
2B Semien SS Betts
SS Smith (L) DH Ohtani (L)
RF García 1B Freeman (L)
1B Lowe (L) LF T. Hernández
LF Langford CF Pages
C Heim (S) RF Heyward (L)
DH Jankowski (L) 2B Lux (L)
3B Duran 3B Biggio (L)
CF Taveras (S) C Barnes
P Lorenzen (R) P Grove (R)

Yoshinobu Yamamoto was originally lined up to start today, but the Dodgers opted to push him back to Saturday. He’s thrown 100 or more pitches in four consecutive outings and threw a season-high 106 in his last start, so now he’ll get seven days between starts. Sidebar, why do writers keep saying he threw 108? I’ve seen it twice in the last couple days. Anyways, that means the Dodgers will try to cobble together a bullpen game today with Michael Grove kicking things off. Grove is a starter by trade and did start 12 games last season, with 13 outings of more than 60 pitches. He still could be an option for a few innings, but he’s maxed out at 50 pitches in an outing this season and has taken down one inning or fewer in 18 of his 26 appearances. He pitched the seventh inning in Tuesday’s blowout and allowed a solo homer and a single. Anthony Banda is the only reliever that’s pitched in both games of this series and none of the relievers had a huge workload last night, so most of the pen should be available behind Grove.

Michael Lorenzen gets the ball for the Rangers. Lorenzen has a 3.05 ERA in 10 starts and has gone six or more innings in eight of those starts. The Rangers won his first two starts of the season, but lost his next six outings (including all five in May) before winning his first start of June. Lorenzen had his shortest start of the season last time out against the Giants. He allowed some baserunners but only allowed two runs on two solo homers by Wilmer Flores through the first four innings. He allowed two singles and a walk to load the bases with one out in the fifth before getting pulled for Jonathan Hernandez, who struck out Flores and Jorge Soler to close the book on Lorenzen. Lorenzen’s been outpitching his peripherals pretty heavily. He has a 4.69 FIP and a 4.66 xERA and only has an 18.9 percent strikeout rate with an 11.8 percent walk rate.

He’s been dominant against lefties this season. Lefties have a .103/.221/.124 slash line off Lorenzen this season, but righties have teed off with a .318/.400/.573 slash. He seems to have different repertoires against lefties and righties. Against righties, Lorenzen’s thrown a sinker 35.8 percent of the time and a slider 20.6 percent of the time. Against lefties, Lorenzen’s thrown a four-seamer 30.9 percent of the time and a change 30 percent. He’s also thrown a cutter (mostly to lefties), sweeper (almost exclusively to righties) and a curveball slightly evenly to both sides of the place. This will be Lorenzen’s first start against the Dodgers, but he’s faced them eight times in relief from his time with the Reds. The last time was in 2021, when he allowed a run but picked up a save in a 3-1 Cincinnati win. In total, he’s allowed seven runs in 10 2/3 against the Dodgers in his career.

Will Smith gets the day off with Austin Barnes starting behind the plate. Seager was initially in the lineup for the Rangers, but was scratched with Travis Jankowski starting as the DH.


Good news on the Clayton Kershaw front.

Kershaw reportedly sat 88-89 in his sim game today and is further along than the team expected at this point. He may head off for a rehab start as his next step. Figure he’ll need quite a few of those, but things seem to be trending upward for him.


First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM PT and will be shown in 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.