Lineup:Gordon 6Ellis 4Kemp 8Rivera 3Ethier 9Hairston 7Uribe 5Treanor 2Billinsley 1
Before the Dodgers head home, they will be looking to finish off what they have started in Houston this weekend. The Houston Astros have been overmatched by the hot as heck Dodgers, and they are at risk of being swept in the three-game series. Matt Kemp has been hitting monstrous homeruns for the past three games in a row, and with Andre Ethier batting after him the opposing team has a Catch-22 on their hands. Sure, pitch around Kemp! Dre will be right behind him and deliver the clutch hit. This is how I fondly remember the dynamic duo perform before Ethier’s knee injury came in to play. Even James Loney smacked his first homerun of the season to our shocking delight yesterday. Things are very good in the land of Blue right now. And just think, in another 9 days the sale of the team should be complete. All this winning has made me forget about the ownership drama for a bit, and that is very refreshing.
Chad Billingsley will go to the mound for the Dodgers to try to pick up his third win of the season. I cannot complain about how Bills has pitched thus far. Chad has struck out 17 batters in 20 1/3 innings pitched. He was a bit shaky in Milwaukee in the beginning of the game, but he settled down nicely thereafter. In Chad’s career against Houston, he is 4-3 with a 4.29 ERA. The current Astro lineup doesn’t have much experience batting against Bills. Chris Snyder has hit two homeruns against him.
Wandy Rodriguez, left-hander, has had some bad breaks to begin the season. He pitched 7 innings on Tuesday against the Nationals, and he only allowed 5 hits and 1 run to the Nats. Against the Dodgers, Wandy has a 4-4 record with a 2.45 ERA. All of the Dodgers have had some at bats against Rodriguez in the past. Matt Kemp is hitting .278 with 1 homerun in his 18 at bats against him in his career. Juan Uribe, who will be back in the lineup today after sitting out the past few days with an inflamed left wrist, has hit 1 homerun against Wandy.
Matt Kemp is electrically charged right now. His bat is like a stick of dynamite. He has a 10-game hitting streak, and he has hit homeruns in the past three consecutive games. He leads all of baseball with his .474 batting average, .523 OBP, 1.018 slugging percentage, and his 9 homeruns and 22 RBI.
With Kemp’s super stardom, Andre Ethier’s fantastic start to the season has been a bit overlooked. Ethier is hitting .293 with 21 RBI and 4 homeruns. The righty-lefty counterparts are looking like a modern day Ruth and Gehrig so far this season.
Let’s enjoy this final game at Minute Maid Park as we say so long for now to Tal’s Hill and the good people of Houston.
The early game will start at 11:00 am, and it will be televised on KCAL. Let’s sweep them Astros!