In my game preview a couple days ago, I semi-jokingly said that I didn’t care if the Dodgers got swept in this series as long as they escaped Coors Field healthy. I didn’t actually mean it, especially now that they’re on the verge of getting swept. However, good job of not clinching while I was at the Kanye concert. Feel free to clinch today though.
Sep 21, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) reacts to striking out in the fourth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
The Dodgers loss+Giants win last night kept the magic number at two. A win+Giants loss makes the Dodgers the final team to clinch a playoff berth in the National League. Today, Alex Wood gets his chance to be the pitcher that takes the Dodgers into the playoffs.
Wood is coming off two of his best starts as a Dodger. He’s allowed four hits and two runs in his last two starts (14 1/3 innings), and one of those came at Dodger Stadium against these Colorado Rockies. In that game, Wood went eight innings (matching his season high) and allowed only one hit. As the first two games have shown, Coors Field is a completely different animal and no lead is safe, so the offense will have to do some work against the Rockies and Chris Rusin.
Rusin started that 16-inning game against the Dodgers a few weeks ago and allowed three runs in six innings. He allowed one through the first six innings, and then allowed a couple baserunners in the seventh and got pulled before they both scored. Rusin actually owns a slightly lower ERA at Coors this season (5.31, compared to 5.46 on the road) but the Dodgers SHOULD still be able to get to him. Also, he throws with his left hand, thus:
Justin Ruggiano hitting leadoff against a lefty at Coors? Yes please. The rest of the lineup not so much. Corey Seager is getting another day off, hopefully so he can be extra fresh for the upcoming series in San Francisco that can actually be more nerve-wracking than it needs to be.
Adrian Gonzalez is also out of the lineup after being scratched from the lineup before yesterdays game with a sore back. At this point there’s not really any point in pushing a guy out there that’s not feeling 100 percent, especially in the Coors altitude. Hopefully he’ll be back and ready to go for the Giants series.
Magic number is still at two, so if they don’t clinch today they will need one win in San Francisco, whether the magic number remains at two or shrinks to one. It would be sweet to clinch up there in front of those fans. But it would also be really nice to not have to worry about getting BABIP’d to death in that series like they were early on. It also sounds as though Enrique Hernandez will be back and fully available in the Giants series, so it would really nice to not have to run Chris Heisey out there against MadBum.
First pitch is scheduled for 1:10 PST and will be shown on Sportsnet LA.