Dodgers Look for Three in a Row Down South as Cappy Debuts
By Scott Andes
Dodger Lineup vs. San DiegoDee GordonMark EllisMatt KempAndre EthierJames LoneyAdam KennedyA.J. EllisTony GwynnChris Capuano
Chris Capuano vs. Dustin Moseley
Looks like Kennedy is giving Uirbe a day off at third base. Gwynn is in left to rest Rivera, and Loney moves up to the fifth spot.
So why are we so damn giddy on this Saturday morning Dodger fans? It is because of the Dodgers two straight wins to start the 2012 season. I know it is only two games, but you have to be impressed with the way the Dodgers have played. We got another treat last night as the Dodgers beat the Padres 6-0. Chad Billingsley stepped up from his lousy spring to pitch 8.1 shutout frames while whiffing 11 Padres. Meanwhile Andre Ethier led the offense with two hits, four runs driven in, a two-run double, and a two-run triple, that put the game away for the Dodgers. Also contributing was Matt Kemp with two hits, an RBI, and two runs scored. Mark Ellis, and Juan Rivera each had two hits, and the Dodgers played flawless defense. I also wanted to touch quickly on manager Don Mattingly’s good call, when he hooked Billingsley in the ninth inning last night. After all this is the first start of the year, and there is no reason to march Bills out there for 120 pitches. Jamey Wright relieved Bills and recorded the last two outs of the game without issues. The game ball for last night of course went to Chad Billingsley, who had one of the highest game scores on the night. Be sure to check our Gagne’s Game Ball Corner at the top of the front of the page. Let us know who you think should get the game ball tonight?
Speaking of great performances, just how gutsy was Kershaw’s outing on Thursday night? We learned that Kershaw not only was vomiting before the game, but vomited again in the eighth inning. Once he was pulled after the third, I could see him walking into the clubhouse, and it looked like he was going to hurl. He was so sick that he was too weak to go back to the team hotel. Kershaw said yesterday that he is feeling a bit better, and that he should start on Tuesday, but that he will play it by ear. Fortunately the Dodgers have an off-day on Monday so Kersh maybe can get some extra rest. He is supposed to throw his scheduled bullpen session, but the Dodgers are not sure if he will be up to it. I am trying not to worry for the moment, but hopefully Kershaw will be feeling better and be able to make his start at Tuesday’s home opener. We will be on Kershaw flu watch for the rest of the week, so we will keep you updated.
Today the Dodgers will play game three of their four game set with the Padres. The Dodgers will give the ball to new kid on the block Chris Capuano. Signed during the off-season from the Mets, has had a very good spring. Capuano finished spring training with a 1-1 record, a 2.75 ERA, and a team high 22 whiffs. The crafty lefty will try and shut down the Padres, which is something he has a lot of experience doing. Capuano is 4-2 in his career against the Padres with a 3.65 ERA. San Diego might be having fits throughout tomorrow.
None of the current Padres have had much success against Cappy, however no one has had more than seven at-bats against him. Cameron Maybin is 2 for 6, Jason Bartlett is 2 for 5, and Jesus Guzman is 2 for 3. No one has hit a home run off of Capuano, and the only current Padre to reach base on a walk off of Cappy is Chris Denorfia.
The Padres will counter with right hander Dustin Moseley. The 30-year old has been in the Majors since 2006. He spent 2006-2009 years with the Angels. He pitched in 16 games for the Yankees in 2010, and then joined the Padres last year. Last season he was 3-10, with a 3.30 ERA, in 20 starts. Moseley was the victim of the worst run support in the league. The Padres feeble offense could only score him 2.55 runs per start. What sticks out to me about Moseley is his low whiff rates. Last year his whiff per nine rate was a low 4.8. What we don’t want to tell the ChickenFriars guys, is that several Dodgers have hit Moseley very well. Andre Ethier is batting .800 off of Moseley, he is 4 for 6 with a home run and two RBIs. Mark Ellis is hitting .357 against the right hander. Ellis is 5 for 16 with a home run, a double, and two RBIs. Matt Kemp is 2 for 6. Even Juan Uribe has hit a home run off of Moseley. Still Moseley is 1-1 with a 1.20 ERA against the Dodgers. The Padres are hoping to get a better outing from Moseley after suffering through Volquez’s control problems, and Cory Luebke’s rookiness.
Today’s game is on at 5:35 PM, televised on Prime Ticket. Stacie will have the post-game recap immediately following. Remember Dodger wins can cause severe bouts of smiling, giggling, and outright euphoria. Let’s make this three in a row, shall we boys? Go Blue!