Dodgers Begin Weekend Set with Redbirds
By Scott Andes
Dodger Lineup vs. CardinalsDee GordonMark EllisBobby AbreuAndre EthierAdam KennedyJames LoneyA.J. EllisTony GwynnTed Lilly
Lance Lynn-6-1 vs. Ted Lilly-5-0
The Dodgers return home tonight for a weekend set against Manager Mike Matheny, and the World Champion St. Louis Cardinals. So while the rest of Baseball is beginning interleague play tonight, the Dodgers and the Cardinals will be the only non-interleague match-up this weekend. This is the first of 11 games between the two teams and there will be three series played.
The Cardinals are 22-16 and atop the NL Central division, by two and a half games over the Reds. The Dodgers are also in first place in their division (25-13), by six games over the Giants. The Dodgers currently have the best record in the National League. Last night the Dodgers beat the Padres 8-1, to earn a split before returning home, where they have the best home record in all of Baseball, at 16-4. Of course as I have said before, once Don Mattingly returned to a normal lineup, that wasn’t filled with B-players, and minor leaguers, we scored eight runs and easily won. Funny how that works isn’t it?
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE
Of course the Cardinals will be a much bigger challenge. Both teams however have been battling injuries. The Dodgers are still without their superstar MVP candidate and franchise player Matt Kemp, who won’t be returning from a strained left hamstring until May 29. Supersub Jerry Hairston is out until May 22, and nobody knows when Juan Rivera, and Juan Uribe will be returning from their injuries. The Cardinals have injuries to Allen Craig, and Carlos Beltran. Both have been bothered with knee injuries, Craig’s stemming from a recent surgery that was done in the off-season.
The pitching match-ups feature two of the hottest pitchers in the game. The Redbirds will be giving the -ball to second year starter Lance Lynn. The 25 year old righty from Indianapolis is 6-1 this season, with a 1.81 ERA. He has whiffed 44 in 44.2 innings, and has a 8.9 whiff per nine rate, and a WHIP under 1.00. The Cardinals had just been swept by the Braves, and Lynn’s last start he took his first loss against the Braves. Lynn has never faced the Dodgers before. According to Daniel, he used to be a reliever that they moved into the rotation.
The Dodgers will counter with lefty Ted Lilly. Ted is 5-0 on the season with a 2.11 ERA. He wasn’t particularly sharp in his last outing. Allowing four earned runs through 6.1 innings against Colorado. He still got the win though thanks to the Dodger offense scoring eleven runs in a 11-5 win. Can he continue his winning ways?
Lilly has always pitched well against the Redbirds. He is 7-3 with a 2.85 ERA against the Cards. He has held them to a collective .148 batting average against. No one is hitting above .215 except Carlos Beltran, who is hitting .273 (3 for 11) with two home runs. We will also see former beloved Dodger shortstop Rafael Furcal, also known as Hit Machine. HM was traded to the Cards last season for Alex Castellanos, and is hitting . 214 with a home run against Lilly. The other home runs against Lilly come from Lance Berkman and Yadier Molina.
The Cardinals are 13-9 at Dodger Stadium since 2005. With Bison still out, this will be a big test for the Dodgers. Game time is at 7:10PM, televised on Prime Ticket. Don’t forget to check out our Podcast with Daniel Shoptaw of C70 at the Bat. You can check that out here Dishing-up-the-Dodgers-LasordasLair Podcast. Daniel provided me with a lot of great information on his Redbirds. Know thy enemy!
For the Dodgers home has been where the wins are. That is a testament to the magic of Dodger Stadium and the great play from Donnie’s boys, during the sacred fiftieth anniversary season of Chavez Ravine. The Dodgers have the best winning percentage at home in all of Baseball. Let’s hope they can continue their winning ways. Only ten days until Bison returns. Hang on Boys, help is coming. Go Blue.