The Dodgers look to close out their best of five National League playoff series as it moves to Phoenix for game 3. The Dodgers have a 2-0 series lead over the Dbacks and look to sweep an opponent in the NLDS for the first time since they swept the Cardinals back in 2009. The win would advance them to the NLCS for the second consecutive season.
Standing in their way will be former Dodger and turncoat Zack Greinke. The Snakes had to burn him in the wild card game but Greinke did not pitch well. He lasted just 4.1 innings in that game and hasn’t pitched since then. The Dodgers will counter with midseason pickup Yu Darvish.
Dodgers @ Arizona- NLDS Game 3-Dodgers lead series 2-0
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) October 9, 2017
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) October 9, 2017
Yu Darvish-10-12 vs. Zack Greinke-10-12
Game time- 7:08 PM PST- TV-TBS
Despite many people’s insistence that Greinke’s career was over after he had a down year in 2016, he’s had a more Greinke like year in 2017. The right hander finished with a 17-7 record, tossing 202.1 innings pitched and posting a 3.20 ERA. Greinke struck out 215 and walked only 45 in 32 starts. He struck out 9.6 per nine and allowed 25 home runs.
Greinke has faced the Dodgers three times this season. He’s 0-2 with a no-decision. The first time the Dodgers faced him was back on April 14 when they battered him for five earned runs on 10 hits over five innings in a 7-1 Dodger win. The Dodgers didn’t see him again until August 9. In that outing he allowed three earned runs on four hits across 6.2 innings. The Dodgers won that game 3-2. In the third time that Greinke toed the rubber against the boys in blue he pitched well, tossing seven innings of one-run ball. However he was not involved in the decision. The Dodgers lost that game as well.
Greinke has made 11 career starts against the Dodgers during the regular season and has posted a 4-4 record with a 3.74 ERA. He’s struck out 8.8 over 67 frames. Greinke has been very good at Chase Field this year. He’s 13-1 with a 2.87 ERA in Arizona. That’s over 18 starts and 116 innings. The Dodgers are hitting .235 with a .742 OPS against Greinke. However they have hit 9 home runs against him and driven home 22 runs. Curtis Granderson, Yasmani Grandal, and Corey Seager have all hit two each. Seager is 6 for 11 against Greinke (.545) and Justin Turner (7 for 22) is batting .318. Cody Bellinger has been ice cold so far in this series, but he’s hit a long ball off Greinke as well.
Greinke vs. Dodgers
The Dodgers will give the ball to Darvish and hope that he proves that he was worth the price they paid for him during the trade deadline. Darvish has pitched better the final two months of the season after having a terrible July. He posted ERAs of 3.13 and 3.71 in August and September respectively.
Darvish faced the Dbacks just once this year back on August 10. In that start he allowed just two runs on five hits and struck out 10 across five frames. He picked up the win in that game and had another solid start against the White Sox the following week.
The good news is that Darvish had pitched very well against the Dbacks in limited action. In 3 career starts against the Snakes he’s 2-0 with a 2.75 ERA and 38 strikeouts against only 2 walks over 19 innings pitched. He’s 1-0 with a 4.26 ERA in 2 career starts at Chase Field. In those two starts he’s punched-out 24 and walked 2. The current Dbacks are hitting just .190 (11 for 58) against Darvish. J.D. Martinez and Adam Rosales have both hit home runs. The only extra-base hits he’s allowed.
Darvish vs. Dbacks
The big question on everyone’s mind is if the Dodgers will celebrate by jumping in the pool again, like they did back in 2013 when they clinched the NL West at Chase Field. Then manager Don Mattingly certainly didn’t care. However Dave Roberts is a different kind of skipper. There won’t be any kind of pool jumping, according to him.
“Yeah, that won’t happen. That won’t happen,” said Roberts. “This is a completely different team, and I think we have bigger goals than to jump into a swimming pool.”
I wouldn’t mind seeing another pool party again to tell you the truth. It’s just time to behead the Snakes once and for all. I’m sick of the Dbacks. I can’t wait to see their faces when the Dodgers sweep and celebrate on their home field. Remember the broom depot should be open late. That’s the place where you can purchase all of your Dodgers NLDS sweep merchandise.
This is going to be fun!