Niese Counters Haren in Opening Game Of Weekend Set Against Mets
By Scott Andes
The Dodgers finally won a game when trailing after the seventh inning. It only took fur and a half months. But the Dodgers did it. They are not 1-46 when trailing after seven frames. Justin Turner’s two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth inning gave the Dodgers a 2-1 win over San Diego. It also gave the Dodges a series win, keeping them 3.5 games ahead of the Giants. Turner has been a huge boost to the club this year, and his clutch bat has been a secret weapon for the Dodgers. With all of their recent injuries, Turner has been a godsend.
Turner’s beautiful home run almost glosses over Clayton Kershaw’s magnificence. The left hander is 15-3, and last night was his fifth game with 10+ whiffs in 2014. His three-hit ten whiff performance gives him 184 whiffs and a 1.82 ERA. Tyson Ross doesn’t get any run support either. That was just the second run scored for him in his four games against the Dodgers this year. He’s lost all four of those games.
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Dodgers Lineup vs. New York
Van Slyke LF
Jon Niese-7-8 vs. Dan Haren-10-10
Lousy offense has been an issue for the Dodgers since they lost Hanley Ramirez and Juan Uribe. As Adrian so astutely noted, the Dodgers desperately need Hanley back in the lineup. Having to go from Hanley’s bat to the automatic outs of Miguel Rojas, and Darwin Barney has been killing the Dodger offense. Having three automatic outs at the bottom of the order is really hurting the club. When the bottom of your order is Rojas/Ellis/pitcher, well then you won’t be scoring many runs. Thankfully Hanley is due to be activated on Sunday against the Mets.
Speaking of the Mets, they come into Dodger Stadium for a three game weekend series. We haven’t seen them in a while. The Mets are in fourth place in the NL Eat, with a 60-68 record. They’re eight games behind Washington and have a 30-36 record on the road.
They’ll give the ball to left hander Jon Niese in the series opener. The Dodgers are familiar with the 27-year old left hander from Lime, Ohio. Niese is having a solid year, posting a 7-8 record, but a 3.50 ERA in 23 starts. He’s whiffed 102 and walked just 39 in 141.1 innings pitched. He has a career 3/91 ERA, and a 2.5 to 1 strikeout to walk ratio.
Niese beat the Dodgers in New York back on May 22. In that game he pitched seven innings, allowing three earned runs on four hits with five whiffs. The Mets beat the Dodgers 5-3. Niese has never lost to the Dodgers, and is 2-0 with a 4.03 ERA in five starts. At Dodger Stadium he is 1-0.
The Dodgers are batting .250 (16 for 64) against Niese with one home run and eight runs driven in. Matt Kemp is 4 for 13 against Niese. Darwin barney is 5 for 12 (.417), and Andre Ethier is 4 for 10. Last night’s hero Justin Turner has hit the only home run off of Niese.
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I just know Mattingly will put out his “lefty lineup” tonight. Which probably means Barney batting lead-off again, and Dee Gordon on the bench. I better not see that.
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
The Dodgers will counter with right hander Dan Haren. Danny boy got lit up like a Christmas tree in his last start against the Brewers. After two consecutive solid starts before that, it was disappointing. Can Haren right the ship again? Or will he get hammered in the first inning like he usually does?
Overall he is 10-10 with a 4.59 ERA in 25 starts. But he’s given up 24 home runs, and 156 hits in 143 frames. Against the Mets he is 3-3 but has a 5.25 ERA in ten career starts. This includes 54 whiffs against 10 walks, but 34 earned runs in 58 innings pitched.
Oh and btw, opposing batters are hitting .311 (33 for 106) against him with six home runs and nine walks allowed in the first innings. How do we get Haren through the first inning?
The Mets are batting .256 (30 for 117) against Haren, with five home runs and 35 whiffs against just two walks. Watch out for David Wright, he’s batting .333 (7 for 21) with two doubles, and two home runs.
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Here’s something to sink your teeth into. The Dodgers are unveiling the newest dog for the New York series. Simply dubbed the “New York Dog”, which contains sabrett’s onions in sauce with Sauerkraut and spicy brown mustard. Looks good.
You can sink your teeth into another of our lovely little recaps after the game. Stacie will be back to wet your appetite. I tell you what, I think we could also use a huge helping of runs tonight. Let’s hope the Dodgers quench our thirst.
Game Time – 7:10 PM