June 28, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers center fielder Andre Ethier (16) celebrates the 9-1 victory with first baseman Clint Robinson (41) and second baseman Dee Gordon (9) against the St. Louis Cardinals at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Haren Hopes To Pitch Dodgers Into Sole Possession Of First Place

Oh yes the Dodgers are certainly on top of the world. They’re on top of the world. Hey! They’re on top of the world! Hey! Dodgers are in first place, no longer do they stink, Hey! Dodgers are so good! Hey! Makes me really smile, can’t hold it in for a while! So happy! Hey! Makes me jump for joy….Hey!

and the Giants stink and they keep on losing, yes they keep on losing, and the whole world sings, and embraces in joy, as the Dodgers win…..and the Dodgers win the world series and the whole world, the world is at peace……and the Giant’s season go down the toilet bowl, and we flush, we flush……

Ok so enough of the singing. All this winning is making me giddy. So, interleague play returns to Dodger Stadium Monday evening as the Dodgers take on the Cleveland Indians for a three game series. The Dodgers are doing it again. They’re on another run. Not as incredible as the run of 2013, but the summer is still young. It’s come at a fantastic time as the Giants have fallen into collapse. The Dodgers have won something like 12 of their last 16, while the Giants have lost 12 of their last 16. So both clubs enter today in a flat-footed tie for first place. The Giants have really gone in the toilet. So hopefully the Dodgers do not let them get back up.

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Dodgers Lineup vs. Cleveland-TBA

Corey Kluber-7-5 vs. Dan Haren-7-4

Cleveland can sure empathize and relate with what the Giants have been going through. The Tribe have fallen into a June funk. The Indians are 6-11 since June 10, and were just swept by the Tigers. In comparison the Dodgers are 17-10 in June. The Indians don’t play well on the road either, as their 16-27 record indicates. Overall the Indians are 39-42 in third place, 6.5 games behind the Tigers.

Cleveland will give the ball to right hander Corey Kluber in game one. The 24-year old Alabama native has been struggling in June, but was able to beat the Dbacks with seven shutout innings. Kluber is 7-5 with a 3.09 ERA in seventeen starts. Kluber throws hard, and has strikeout stuff. He’s whiffed 122 in 110 innings, for a strikeout rate of 9.9 per nine innings. Kluber throws a hard sinker, four-seamer, and has added a cutter.

While Kluber has never faced the Dodgers, he is 6-0 in interleague play. The Dodgers and Indians have played each other seven times, and the Tribe haven’t been to Dodger Stadium since 2008. The Tribe won two of three in that series, but trail 2-4 in all-time play.

PA AB H 3B 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG
Adrian Gonzalez 2 2 1 0 0 1 2 0 0 .500 .500 2.000
Justin Turner 2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .500 .500 .500
Total 4 4 2 0 0 1 2 0 1 .500 .500 1.250

 

For the Dodgers they’ll send the somewhat struggling Dan Haren to the mound to counter. I say somewhat struggling because he is but he isn’t. Don’t get me wrong, his pitching of late hasn’t been good, but I guess it hasn’t been terrible. Over his last eight starts, Haren has not allowed more than four earned runs, which is good. But he’s allowed less than three in just one of those starts, and that’s bad. Haren still doesn’t walk anyone, he just gives up way too many hits and home runs. He’s now given up 14 home runs over his last eight starts. In his previous seven he had only given up two.

He’s also gotten into a horrible habit of giving up runs in the first inning. And you know how much I hate first inning runs allowed. Haren has allowed a run in the first inning in eleven consecutive starts. So you could probably say it’s already 1-0 Cleveland right now. I joke, but seriously stop it Haren.

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Otherwise Haren’s numbers aren’t terrible. He’s 7-4 with a 3.83 ERA. He’s walked just 16, and whiffed 64. That’s in 96 frames. But it stands to reason Haren has some experience against the Tribe from his days in the American League. Against Cleveland he is 4-3 with a 3.83 ERA in 12 starts. The Indians don’t hit Haren well at all. They’re hitting just .220 (27 for 123) with two home runs. Davis Murphy is hitting .375 (9 for 24) with both home runs against Haren. Check out what the rest of the Indians are hitting against Danny boy.

PA AB H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG
David Murphy 26 24 9 1 0 2 7 2 3 .375 .423 .667
Asdrubal Cabrera 24 23 2 0 0 0 1 1 7 .087 .125 .087
Michael Brantley 17 16 4 2 0 0 0 1 0 .250 .294 .375
Michael Bourn 16 13 4 2 0 0 0 3 4 .308 .438 .462
Carlos Santana 14 12 1 0 0 0 0 2 5 .083 .214 .083
Jason Kipnis 10 9 2 0 0 0 1 1 3 .222 .300 .222
Ryan Raburn 9 9 2 1 0 0 1 0 2 .222 .222 .333
Nick Swisher 9 9 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 .222 .222 .222
Mike Aviles 3 3 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 1.000
Lonnie Chisenhall 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000 .000 .000
George Kottaras 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000
Total 133 123 27 6 1 2 11 10 29 .220 .278 .333

 

That’s about it for now. The three game series will wrap up the seven game home stand. The Dodgers then go on the road to play at Detroit, and then Colorado. The Dodgers have a great chance of taking over sole possession of first place. Check out the game at 7:10 PM to find out. The first place Dodgers. Sounds nice doesn’t it?

Go Blue!

Tags: Corey Kluber Dan Haren Los Angeles Dodgers Yasiel Puig

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