Dodgers Lineup: vs. ArizonaM.Ellis 4Victorino 7Gonzalez 3Kemp 8Ramirez 6Ethier 9Cruz 5Ellis 2Beckett 1
The Dodgers just can’t beat the Arizona Diamondbacks. After last night’s eleventh inning loss, the Dodgers have now lost eight in a row to the snakes and
10 of 12. The Boys in Blue showed a little more life last night as they battled back to tie the game at three apiece, but the absence of Kenley Jansen showed important in the eleventh inning when Don Mattingly brought in Matt Guerrier who hadn’t pitched in the Majors since early April. Shawn Tolleson, Brandon League, and Ronald Belisario all pitched scoreless innings in relief, but with a diluted bullpen an extra inning game put the advantage in Arizona’s corner. Matt Guerrier allowed a solo homerun to the first batter he faced in the eleventh, who also happened to be his former teammate Jason Kubel. The Dodgers tried to rally back in the bottom of the eleventh with no success. At 4 1/2 games back in the NL West standings, it’s becoming seemingly clear that the Dodgers will have to focus their effort on trying to snag that newly added second Wild Card spot.
The Dodgers will call up catcher Tim Federowicz and pitcher Javy Guerra for some extra help as rosters expand on this the first day of September. Other possible call ups include Bobby Abreu, Tony Gwynn Jr., Stephen Fife, John Ely, Scott Van Slyke, and Alex Castellanos.
Josh Beckett is 0-1 with a 4.76 ERA since joining the Dodgers and making one start for Los Angeles. Beckett’s Dodger debut in Coors Field was more than anyone could ask for. He allowed three runs on 7 hits including a solo homerun in 5 2/3 innings of work. He walked three batters and struck out six in the loss. His velocity has decreased, but he still has a good mix of pitches. In his career against Arizona, Josh is 1-4 with a 4.91 ERA. He has struck out 38 Snakes in 36 2/3 innings of work. Aaron Hill, Jason Kubel, and Miguel Montero have all gone deep against Beckett in the past.
Tyler Skaggs, a lefty, will go to the mound for the D-backs in hopes of securing the series win. This will be Skaggs third Major League start of his career, and his first start against the Dodgers. He won his first start against Miami while allowing two earned runs on three hits over 6 2/3 innings. Last time out, he lost his first game. Cincinnati beat him on two earned runs and five hits over his 5 2/3 innings of work. The young 21-year old southpaw was born in Woodland Hills and graduated from Santa Monica High School. The D-backs have the youngest pitching staff in the league, and the newbie hurlers have 21 wins which is good for most in the Majors for rookie pitchers.
The Dodgers have only won two games since making the August 25th blockbuster deal. Don Mattingly recently had a meeting with the newcomers Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Nick Punto, Randy Choate, Brandon League, Shane Victorino, and Hanley Ramirez. Mattingly’s cited the difficulty with meshing the new players into the mix this late in the season. The Dodgers had spoke of the great clubhouse atmosphere this season, but the large roster turnover has now caused some difficulties and lackluster results.
The time is now. The Dodgers will not make it into the playoffs with nonexistent offense and nonaggressive playing tactics. Last night Matt Kemp single handedly manufactured a run after fooling Upton and stealing a base. Even though Bison is banged up, he knows how urgent the situation is. The whole team needs to play as if every day is a playoff game.
First pitch will be at 6:10 pm, and it will be televised on Prime Ticket. Check back here after the game for our postgame recap.