Dodgers Opening Day 2016 Game Preview

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Mar 13, 2016; Salt River Pima-Maricopa, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) stretches before a spring training game against the Colorado Rockies at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 13, 2016; Salt River Pima-Maricopa, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) stretches before a spring training game against the Colorado Rockies at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports /
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Wake up! Wake up! It’s Opening Day and the horrible five straight months we call the “offseason” have come to an end as the Dodgers face the San Diego Padres today at 4:05pm.

I am not sure about you, but today is my favorite day of the year. Where all baseball fans can come together and celebrate opening day knowing that every team is currently in first and last place. Where the stats and records of the 2015 season all disappear and the race for the World Series begins again.

The Dodgers are handing off the ball today at Petco Park in San Diego to the same guy they have every year on Opening Day since 2011, Clayton Kershaw. Kershaw is set to pitch his sixth consecutive Opening Day game for the Dodgers. The five previous Opening Day games he has started, the Dodgers left the game with a W and they are looking to do the same today against the Padres and Tyson Ross.

Kershaw ended last season with a record of 16-7 and he posted an ERA of 2.13. The most impressive stat from Kershaw’s 2015 season was the fact that he had 301 strikeouts in 232.2 innings. Last year Kershaw pitched three games against the Padres. One of which was Opening Day and another was his final game where he recorded his 301 strikeout as Melvin Upton Jr. swung and missed at a curveball. In those three games, Kershaw only gave up 12 hits and struckout 27 batters. The three time Cy Young winner looks to pick up where he left off last season.

The Dodgers will be facing Tyson Ross. Ross is entering his fourth season with the Padres. In 2015, he pitched in 196 innings and posted an ERA of 3.26. Ross faced the Dodgers two times and allowed 11 hits in those games. He also struckout seven batters in the two starts.

Below is your Dodgers Opening Day lineup:

No more guessing the lineup it is finally here! Everything looks to be the way Dave Roberts had planned. Carl Crawford was originally supposed to be a backup, but due to Andre Ethier’s injury, he got the start later today. A.J. Ellis also is batting eighth and in the starting lineup due to Yasmani Grandal’s injury. However, the combination of Kershaw and Ellis on Opening Day is not a new concept to the team. Roberts made it clear moving on into the season there will be no such thing as a “personal catcher”, but there is no denying that Ellis and Kershaw are a great match and always on the same page.

This is Chase Utley’s ninth Opening Day start and first time in the leadoff spot. Right after him is Corey Seager as he makes his first Opening Day appearance on a big league club. At just 21 years old, Seager is the youngest starting shortstop on Opening Day in 72 years.

First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 PM PST and will be shown on Sports Net LA and ESPN (if you live in the LA area, it will be blacked-out).

The good news is, we survived the offseason and it is time for Dodger baseball!

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