There’s always drama in Colorado. Matt Kemp, whose shoulder was injured after he collided with the Coors Field center field wall, once again stirred up polarizing opinions in Colorado on a challenged tag at second. I think that Kemp loses focus more so than his hustling tendencies or lack thereof. Once again he was distracted by not only his assumption that his hard hit ball to center was going to go out but also by Davey Lopes‘ high-five as he reached first base. The Dodgers never fail to create new and undiscovered plays.
The Dodgers’ offense was not fueled by the former M.V.P. contender in Game 1 versus the Rockies, but rather it was Dee Gordon who led the onslaught against the rookie Butler with three hits including three triples. Dee Gordon now is tied for the lead in the MLB for most triples with 6 (Alexis Rios also has 6). Hyun-jin Ryu was also able to silence the Colorado bats for the most part, and the Dodgers bullpen pitched three scoreless frames. It actually feels like it’s been awhile since a bullpen implosion…
I shouldn’t jinx it. Zack Greinke is on the mound, and he is vying for his ninth win of the season. The quirky right-hander is sort of a cult favorite, and I can attest that his smirky grin and his outstanding pitching has really been a favorite part of the Dodgers’ season so far for me. Even though Clayton Kershaw gets top billing, I dare to say that Greinke has pitched better than Kersh this season so far.
Greinke lost his last time out against the Pirates. He allowed an uncharacteristic 4 runs on 5 hits over 6 innings. That was the most runs Greinke has
allowed in a start all season. Greinke is 3-2 with a 4.25 ERA in 10 games (9 starts) versus Colorado. He is 1-0 with a 4.58 ERA in 4 career games pitches at Coors Field. He’ll have to watch out for Drew Stubbs who homered in Game 1. Stubbs is hitting .429 against Greinke with 6 hits in 14-at bats.
Jhoulys Chacin has yet to win a game this year. The long-time Colorado pitcher wasn’t involved in the decision in his last start against the Indians. Chacin pitched 5 innings and allowed 4 runs on 3 hits. Chacin has yet to pitch more than 6 innings this year. He is 8-6 with a 3.66 ERA in 16 games (15 starts) against the Dodgers in his career. Andre Ethier has the most hits off Chacin of any Dodger with 10 including 3 doubles and a homerun in 36 plate appearances. Adrian Gonzalez has also collected 6 hits off Chacin in 13 at-bats, and Dee Gordon also has 3 hits against him.
Greinke dominates on the road, and this season is no exception. Greinke is 4-1 with a great 1.67 ERA on the road this year. Perhaps the starters’ superb performances on the road have outshined what they have done at home. After all, Josh Beckett threw his no-hitter in Philadelphia. Greinke has fared better out of Dodger Stadium this season, but Coors Field is always challenging for any pitcher.
The Dodgers had an eventful off day as statements from Don Mattingly swirled with discord. Mattingly used expletive terms to describe the Dodgers’ stagnant play, and some of the players including Adrian Gonzalez and Matt Kemp agreed with his assessment. Gonzalez made a great point to say that Mattingly’s constant lineup shuffling isn’t helping the consistency of the offense any.
Prediction: Andre Ethier has Chacin’s number and collects two hits.
The Dodgers need to focus on the task at hand=winning.