Twice Bitten, Dodgers Look to Avoid Sweep

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It was just a few weeks ago when the Dodgers were hitting grand slams and their offense was shooting off fireworks in Arizona. The first two games of the series against the D-backs at Chase Field have been really frustrating losses. The Snakes slithered their way to a series win, and the Dodgers ended up with a battered ace and two injured third baseman by the time game two ended on Saturday evening.

Zack Greinke (0-0, 1.50) vs. Josh Collmenter (0-1, 7.71)

Justin Turner, who was spiked by A.J. Pollock on his left hand, is listed as day-to-day. Turner’s hand is not broken according to Jerry Hairston Jr. who was texting with Turner after the game. Juan Uribe, who was hurt in the very next play after the Turner injury, is also day-to-day with hamstring tightness. The Dodgers will need to call up someone like Kike´ Hernandez in the Seattle series should Turner or Uribe end up on the D.L.

Yasiel Puig sat on Saturday night in favor of Andre Ethier who went 0-for-3 with a walk. Ethier is slated to start in left field for Carl Crawford in Sunday’s game. The offense was completely stalled out against impressive rookie Archie Bradley who outpitched the struggling ace Clayton Kershaw in his major league debut.

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Lineup:

Rollins SSPuig RFGonzalez 1BKendrick 2BGrandal CEthier LFGuerrero 3BPederson CFGreinke P

Kershaw has looked out of sorts during his first two starts, but in Saturday’s loss it was very apparent that Kershaw did not have his pitches working for him. Kersh is scheduled for a root canal on Monday, and perhaps the tooth injury he sustained during Spring Training is causing more discomfort for him than the Dodgers are divulging.

Zack Greinke will go to the mound on Sunday for his second start of the season. Greinke wasn’t involved in the decision in his first start against the Padres. He pitched 6 innings and allowed 1 run on 2 hits with 4 strikeouts and a walk on 94 pitches. The Dodgers lost the game 7-3.

Greinke is 5-3 with a 3.96 ERA against the D-backs in 12 career starts against the Snakes. He is 4-2 with a 4.40 ERA in 8 career starts at Chase Field. A.J. Pollack and Paul Goldschmidt have hit homeruns off of him in the past.

The Dodgers will have to try to muster some offense off veteran Josh Collmenter. Collmenter lost his first start this season to the San Francisco Giants. He allowed 5 runs on 10 hits with 4 strikeouts and a walk on 89 pitches in the Opening Day loss. Against the Dodgers, Collmenter is 4-7 with a 5.66 ERA in 15 career games (7 starts).

A.J. Ellis has hit well against Collmenter in the past with 2 homeruns in 13 at bats.

The Dodgers have looked listless at the plate this series, and Adrian Gonzalez hasn’t hit a homerun in days. The Dodgers will have to look to their benches early this season with a possible disability stint by Juan Uribe if his hamstring isn’t happy. Yasiel Puig did play third base briefly in Friday’s loss, maybe he can get some time at the hot corner should Turner and Uribe both be disabled.

In all seriousness, the Dodgers need to get their act together and play as a cohesive unit. The injuries have already taken an early toll on the team, but this is why the new front office bolstered the roster depth this offseason. We just don’t know how deep they will need to go.

Go Blue!

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