Dodgers Padres Game Two Preview

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May 15, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Alex Wood (57) pitches in the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
May 15, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Alex Wood (57) pitches in the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports /
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After a stunning walk-off loss, the Dodgers turn to Alex Wood to break their dry spell.

Amanda said it all in her title for yesterday’s recap. That game was such an emotional roller coaster. From “Oh god Kazmir stop walking everyone” to “PUIG DID A THING” to “oh damn it” to “TURNER”, it finally ended with Mr. Reliable giving up a walk off homer to the bad Upton brother (that’s been like 12 times better than his brother this year??).

It still counts as only one loss in the standings, but lord that was painful. The high of Justin Turner almost-game-winning home run to the low of watching a man named Melvin round the bases after winning the game. That one stung. There was reason to be optimistic (Louis Coleman/Adam Liberatore/Pedro Baez were pretty solid, the offense put up six runs and got 11 hits), but to still come away with a loss was pretty painful.

Alex Wood gets his shot today, and hopefully he thinks Petco Park is just Dodger Stadium South. Wood has made eight starts this season, with four coming at home and four on the road. In those four home starts, Wood has pitched like an ace. In his road starts, he’s pitched like the ceremonial first pitch thrower duped everyone and just kinda stayed on the mound. He’s given up 21 runs (17 earned) in 19 road innings, and has given up 4 earned runs in 26 innings at home.

One of those home starts came against these Padres, and Wood allowed a run and five hits in seven innings and struck out a season-high nine batters. Just do that again, tonight.

Cesar Vargas gets the ball for the Padres in his sixth start of the season. Vargas is still searching for his first win, but he’s been pretty solid this season. He got rocked by the Cubs a few starts ago, but in his four other starts he’s given up four earned runs combined. He’s tossed one scoreless outing, which came against the Dodgers because of course it did. He held the Dodgers to four hits in 5.1 innings in his second career start, but didn’t get the decision as the Dodgers tied the game, only to lose in the later innings.

Trayce Thompson remains in the starting lineup over Carl Crawford, even against a righty. While it hasn’t been made official that Thompson has taken over the starting spot in left, that’s really what it seems like. Crawford’s been slightly better at the plate of late, and while Trayce has yet to show his superior defense, the potential is there and he should be the everyday starter at least until Andre Ethier returns (and I’d say after as well).

Next: Offense Half-Empty or Half-Full?

Adrian Gonzalez appeared in yesterday’s game in a double switch and he played an inning in the field and got an at bat. He’s in today’s lineup, so it’s probably safe to assume he’s close to 100 percent and him not starting yesterday was more due to facing a lefty than his injury. He needs to get going, especially with runners in scoring position, and if he can revert to the “butter and eggs man” status that we’re so accustomed to, the lineup should fare better for it.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PST and will be shown on Sportsnet LA.

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