Tony Gwynn 8 Elian Herrera 4 Bobby Abreu 7 Andre Ethier 9 Adam Kennedy 5 James Loney 3 A.J. Ellis 2 Justin Sellers 6 Chad Billingsley 1
Dodger Lineup vs. Cardinals
Kyle Lohse-5-1 vs. Chad Billingsley-2-3
(the awsome pic below is brought to you by Mr. Gary Warren on twitter.) Thank you Gary
The Dodger dugout is turning into the Mash 4077 unit. Where is Hawkeye Pierce when you need him? Before yesterday’s rousing 6-0 shutout of the Cardinals, we found out that second baseman Mark Ellis was going on the disabled list. Mark had been upended on a take out slide the game before by Cardinals second baseman Tyler Greene. Ellis didn’t jump high enough, and his knee locked with Greene’s knee. Ellis stayed in the game for another inning before being removed. Mark had to be hospitalized last night after the game, and have emergency surgery to remove fluids from his leg. His leg was so swollen that fluid built up within his knee, and had to be drained. This procedure is called a fasciotomy. Ellis will remain in the hospital until Tuesday. Please pray for his speedy recovery. His prognosis is not good. He will be out for six weeks.
Ivan Dejesus was called up from Albuquerque to take his place on the roster. It is a tough pill for the Dodgers to swallow, as they try to survive a rash of recent injuries. All total now four of the Dodger’s starting regulars are on the disabled list, and five position players total. Jerry Hairston is due to be activated in the Arizona series. Matt Kemp is due to be back May 29. Juan Uribe has arthritis in his wrist, and is waiting to see a specialist, and it is unknown exactly how long left fielder Juan Rivera will be out with a ruptured hamstring, but he is expected to be out at least two months. Also noticeable was the absence of Dee Gordon, who has been benched for the next few days. Although Manager Don Mattingly said that Dee would only be taking a few days off, there are more rumblings that if his struggles continue, he may be optioned back to Albuquerque. Last night old friend Aaron Miles made his debut with the Isotopes and went 2 for 5 with a run scored. Once again, the plucky veteran infielder stands ready to assist.
Despite all of the injuries, the beat goes on and on, and the Dodgers keep winning. The Dodgers have now won eight of their last ten games. They have the best record in Baseball at 27-13, and the best home record in Baseball with an 18-4 mark. The Dodgers remain six games ahead of the Giants in the NL West, and are looking for a sweep of the NL Central leading Cardinals. Last night the Dodgers won 6-0 behind the complete and utter domination of Clayton Kershaw. The win was his fourth career shutout. Last season he had five complete games, and two shutouts. Tonight the Dodgers are looking for their second straight sweep of the Redbirds, and their sixth win in a row, dating back to last season.
Standing in their way is Kyle Lohse. Righty Lohse has been pretty tough this season. He is 5-1 with a 2.70 ERA. The thing that jumps out at me about Lohse, is that he doesn’t walk anyone. While his whiff per nine rate is low, (5.8), his walk rate is 1.4. Lohse has only walked eight batters in 50 innings. So don’t expect him to be giving up any free passes tonight. Kyle is 2-3 against the Dodgers with a 5.48 ERA. The Dodgers have always seemed to hit him well over the years. Guess who has the most success versus Lohse? You guessed it, our hero from last night Adam Kennedy. AK has batted .400, (14 for 35) off of Lohse, so expect for him to be in the lineup. Ethier is htting .273, and nobody else has had significant enough plate appearances to take serious. No current Dodger has hit a home run against Lohse.
The Dodgers will counter with Chad Billingsley. Bills hasn’t been bad this year, just inconsistent, and it seems it has been the story of his career. He’s up he’s down, he’s back, then he’s not. Who knows what kind of performance we will get out of Bills. He hasn’t lasted past the fourth inning in his last two starts, being hooked early, then pouting and tantruming in the dugout. Although he has pitched fairly well against the Cardinals. He has held the Cardinals to a .241 average against. Against St. Louis, Bills is 1-3 with a 4.65 ERA. Against the rest of the league this season he is 2-3 with a 3.83 ERA, and a 7.5 whiff per nine rate. Once again, We will have to watch out for the evil Matt Holiday who is always the bad guy. Holiday is batting .348 off of Bills, with three home runs, and five RBIs. Yadier Molina is .357 (3 for 15), and no other Redbird has done much else versus Billingsley.
If the Dodgers can get this win, it will mark the fifth three game sweep this year. After the game, the Dodgers will travel to Arizona for a three game series, before coming back home for a seven game homestand against Houston and Milwaukee. Tonight’s game is at 5PM, and televised on Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN. Let’s sweep those Redbirds, and show the rest of the world that the Dodgers are for real. Can the Dodgers continue their home magic? it’s sweep time Dodger fans! Go Blue.