So Nick Tepesch was predictably terrible in his Dodger debut and the Dodger’s 6-game winning streak was snapped in an 8-6 loss to the Pirates. Unsurprisingly Tepesch allowed five earned runs on seven hits over just 4 innings. The Dodger bullpen gave up the rest and the offense could never fully catch up. With the loss and yet another Giant’s win puts the Dodgers 7 games back in the NL West. The Dodgers can certainly get a wild card, but the NL West race is over. I mean O-V-E-R….OVER!!! The Giants are just a better club with superior starting pitching. The Dodgers can certainly get a wild card but the NL west is a pipe dream at this point.
Of course the front office only has themselves to blame for having to use a below replacement level starting pitcher. The front office spent millions of dollars on injury riddled and below average pitchers, and to nobody’s surprise they are all on the disabled list. Don’t expect Brandon McCarthy, Hyun-jin Ryu, or Brett Anderson to contribute at all this season. As I said in spring training, I don’t expect any of those guys to pitch even an inning this year. The Dodgers are going to have to go out and get two starting pitchers via trade.
Dodgers @ Pittsburgh
Van Slyke LF
Game Time – 4:15 PM – TV – FOX
The Dodgers continue their series with the Pirates in Steel Town as Kenta Maeda will counter left hander Jeff Locke. Maeda is 6-4 with a 2.64 ERA through 14 games. Over 81.2 innings pitched Maeda has struck out 79 and walked 24 with an 8.7 strikeout per nine rate. I have to give the front office credit for his signing though, as he’s pitched very well for the Dodgers. His last start was a no-decision in which he allowed one earned run on 6 hits across 6.1 innings pitched against the Brewers.
The Pirates pitching has been very poor this season, and Locke has had a disappointing season as well. Locke is 6-5 with a 5.44 ERA in 14 starts. He’s whiffed 48 and walked 23 over 82.2 innings pitched. His lack of the ability to get swings and misses has been a problem for him as he’s posted a 4.7 K/9 rate while 9.8 hits per nine and 12 home runs. Although he did pitch 6.1 shutout innings against the Giants in his last start. Locke is 1-3 with a 4.07 ERA in 4 career starts against the Dodgers. The current Dodgers are just 9 for 38 (.237) with a .652 OPS against Locke over 42 plate appearances.
Locke vs. Dodgers
As much as I’ve joked around and talked smack on the front office, they’ve still built a pretty damned good pitching staff. The Dodgers rank fourth in the majors in team ERA (3.38) which is pretty good for a club that has suffered the injuries that the Dodgers have. However the back end of the rotation needs to be addressed soon. They can’t keep starting Nick Tepesch. As a matter of fact Nick Tepesch can never start again.
In some minor news and notes, you’ve all heard of the DFA’ing of Will Venable by now. The Dodgers jettisoned him once Yasiel Puig returned from the disabled list. The Dodgers also picked up a former reliever. Apparently reports are surfacing that the club has signed former lefty specialist and big iguana Randy Choate. According to the reports Choate was released by the Blue Jays on March 29th. The Dodgers have signed him to a minor league deal. Choate pitched briefly for the Dodgers back in 2012. He was acquired from the Marlins in the Hanley Ramirez trade.
Speaking of Puig, he homered last night. Let’s hope this is the beginning of him turning his season around. The Dodgers need him. You can catch the game today on Fox, and stick around here for more Dodger discussion and general tom foolery. Go Blue!