Corey Seager hit his first home run on Saturday evening, but in typical Dodger fashion their late inning rally fell one run short. They usually all do. I’ll have to discuss Dave Robert’s Mattingly-esque decision to have Kike Hernandez bunting in the ninth inning with a runner on second base. It killed that rally. Please stop disappointing me Dave.
Johnny Cueto completely shut the Dodgers down allowing just three hits and one earned run over 7.1 innings. Scott Kazmir had his second consecutive pathetic start allowing four earned runs on seven hits and walking four over just four innings. That’s the second straight time he’s not made it past the fifth inning and my patience is starting to wear thin with him. The Dodgers were also 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
Sunday evening’s rubber game was picked up by ESPN so the Dodgers will be on a national broadcast for the first this season. Kenta Maeda will have his first exposure to a national television audience as well as he makes just his third MLB start. The Giants will counter with Jeff Samardzija.
Dodgers vs. Giants
Jeff Samardzija-1-0 vs. Kenta Maeda-1-0
Game time – 5:05 PM – TV- ESPN
The Shark as they call him was a first look free agent signing by the Giants this winter. San Francisco signed him to a five-year 90 million dollar contract. So far this season Samardzija is 1-0 with a 3.38 ERA through two starts. Last season he posted a 11-13 record and a 4.96 ERA in 32 starts for the White Sox. Samardzjia has faced the Dodgers four times and is 1-2 with a 4.91 ERA. He’s 0-1 with a 6.14 ERA at Dodger Stadium.
The current Dodgers are hitting .444 (15 for 34) in limited action against Samardzija. The Dodgers have posted an 1.135 OPS against him with two home runs. Chase Utley has had success and is hitting .400 (6 for 15) with 3 doubles, a home run, and five runs batted in.
Dodgers vs. Samardzija
Maeda is making his third start in his brief major league career. His first two starts against the Padres and Dbacks have been nearly identical. In both starts he allowed no runs on five hits over six frames. He struck out four in both start and has walked just one. In one start he earned a win and the other he got a no-decision. He’ll face his first real test tonight against the Giants.
In other news Carl Crawford is nearing a return from his back injury. Unfortunately Hyun-jin Ryu has suffered another setback with a groin injury. Crawford is preparing to go for a triple-A rehab assignment while the club is in Atlanta. According to reports, he’ll rejoin the club in Colorado on April 24. Ryu on the other hand will continue to do arm exercises until his groin heals enough for him to return to throwing.
A win tonight gives the Dodgers a series win and sole possession of first place in the NL West. After Sunday night’s game the Dodgers are off on Monday and then will travel to Atlanta for a three game series Tuesday-Thursday before making their first trip to Colorado over the weekend. Enjoy the game tonight everybody. Memo to Dodgers, please beat those bastards.