Dodger Lineup vs. GiantsGordon 6 Kennedy 4 Kemp 8 Ethier 9 ABreu 7 Uribe 5 Loney 3 AJ Ellis 2 Billingsley 1
The Dodger/Giant series comes to an end tonight with a rubber game match-up at Dodger Stadium. After last night’s buntfest failure, the Dodgers are looking to get back on track especially offensively. Tonight Tim Lincecum takes the mound for the Giants, who normally draws Kershaw, but he just misses him this time around and instead will draw Chad Billingsley. Seeing Adam Kennedy batting second is making me vomit, but I digress.
The big news today of course was the rumored announcement of the call-up of top first base prospect big hitting Scott Van Slyke. He was called up as Juan Rivera is supposed to be placed on the disabled list after re-injuring his leg last night. After the seventh inning he complained of something that felt like “needles” behind his knee. That doesn’t sound good. The Dodgers don’t have anybody else to play first base, and Loney has been so pathetic. The Dodgers are going to take a look at the big kid. Van Slyke is 25-years old from Chesterfield, Missouri. He was drafted in the fourteenth round of the 2005 draft. Van Slyke was hitting .336 with eight home runs in 32 games at Albuquerque. This tells you how little confidence the Dodgers have in Loney anymore. I can’t blame them. Loney is in the lineup tonight, so we might not see him until he arrives for Friday’s game. Please note, the move has not yet been finalized, but according to the grapevine he is on his way. We will have more on the call-up of Scott Van Slyke a little later. As for the pitching-match-ups….
Lincecum has gotten off to a poor start with three bad starts in a row to start the season. However his last couple of outings he has been a lot better. Lincecum allowed three runs in five innings in Milwaukee. The long-haired freak is 2-2 on the year with a 5.68 ERA. Obviously those are not Lincecum type numbers for the former Cy Young winner. Lincecum has always given the Dodgers a bad time anyways. Against the Dodgers he is 5-4 with a 2.85 ERA and 93 whiffs. The Dodgers are only hitting .235 collectively against Lincecum. The one Dodger who has hit him the best is Juan Rivera (of course). He has hit Lincecum to the tune of a .429 average, 6 for 15. Matt Kemp is batting .265 (9 for 34) with no home runs. Andre Ethier is hitting .286 against Timmy (10 for 35) and has the only two home runs off Lincecum and six RBIs. Look for Lincecum to struggle early, as he gets tougher as the game goes on. 12 of his 20 earned runs have come in the first innings.
The Dodgers will counter with Chad Billingsley. Who knows which Bills will show up today. The good Bills that started off 2-0, and he whiffed 11 Padres in the opening series? Or the crappy inconsistent Bills that nibbles too much and doesn’t challenge the hitters. Let’s hope it’s the good Bills. Last time out in Chicago, Bills allowed four runs and lost the game. Bills has pitched well against the Giants in the past, posting a 7-5 record, a 3.24 ERA, and 102 whiffs. On the year, Bills is 2-2 with a 3.19 ERA. Against the current group of Giants he hasn’t fared very well. Buster Posey is hitting .450, (9 for 20) with four RBIs. Ryan “Tootblan” Theriot is hitting .318 ( 7 for 22), and Nate Schierholtz is 8 for 19 for a .421 average against Bills. No one else has done anything, and the only Giant to homer off Bills is Brandon Belt who hit one last April off of Bills.
Tomorrow is an off day for the Dodgers, and then Colorado comes into town for a weekend set. Even though the Dodgers are still 4.5 games in front of the Giants, we could really use the win tonight. Game time is at 7:10 PM on Prime Ticket. In case anyone cares, today is Aaron Harang’s birthday. Let’s hope we can score some runs tonight and beat up on Timmy! Let’s get Harang a B-day win, And would somebody please please tell Don Buntingly to stop bunting. I swear if I see any bunts tonight I might throw a shoe through my TV. Check back with us after the game for our nightly recap. Go Blue