As most of the momentum has now shifted to the Astros side heading into Game 4 in Houston, the Dodgers will now turn to Alex Wood in hopes of holding the Houston offense at bay, while the Los Angeles bats intend to finally break free and generate some much needed runs.
The Dodgers will utilize the same batting order as their Game 3 lineup, Chris Taylor will leadoff and play center field, followed by Corey Seager at short, Justin Turner at third base and Cody Bellinger at first. Yasiel Puig will play right field and bat fifth, followed by Logan Forsythe at the keystone, Austin Barnes catching, Joc Pederson as the designated hitter, and Enrique Hernandez in left field, batting ninth.
Southpaw Alex Wood will do the pitching for Los Angeles.
Wood had a breakout season in his third year with the Dodgers, collecting a career-high
16 wins and posting a career-low 2.72 ERA. In 27 games during the regular season—25 which were starts—he went 16-3 with a 2.72 ERA over 152-1/3 innings pitched and has held batters to a .217 average, striking out 151 batters against 38 walks in the process.
In his lone start against the Astros in June of 2014 as a member of the Atlanta Braves, he gave up just three hits across an even seven scoreless innings, picking up the win in the Braves’ 4-0 victory at Minute Maid Park. In the contest, he struck out four batters against a lone walk on 79 pitches.
Los Angeles hopes to get some reasonable length from Wood, who lasted only 4-2/3 innings and 70 pitches while taking the loss in the Dodgers’ 3-2 defeat against the Cubs in Game 4 of the NLCS at Wrigley Field.
The Astros counter with righty veteran Charlie Morton who has a career 60-78 record with a 4.41 ERA and a 4.01 FIP over 186 starts in 10 big league seasons. This year, Morton posted a 14-7 mark with a 3.62 ERA and a 3.46 FIP in 146-2/3 innings alongside 163 strikeouts and 50 walks.
Lifetime during the postseason, Morton has a 1-2 record over four starts, posting a 5.30 ERA in 18-2/3 innings with 18 strikouts, nine walks and three home runs surrendered. In his career against the Dodgers, the 33-year-old New Jersey native has an 0-1 record in two starts, having surrendered 11 runs—eight of which were earned—on 16 hits and five walks over an even 11 innings.
The Astros will employ the exact same lineup which delivered a win on Friday night in Game 3.
In perhaps the biggest news for the Astros in the pregame, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred announced that Houston first baseman will be suspended five games at the beginning of the 2018 season for an offensive gesture he made towards Dodgers’ righty Yu Darvish in Game 3. Gurriel appeared to slant his eyes with his fingers as he was mocking Darvish preceding the right-hander’s exit in the second inning.
Gurriel’s suspension will be without pay, and the Astros already announced that they intend on donating the lost salary to charity. The 33-year-old Cuban-born infielder was also ordered to undergo sensitivity training.
Dodgers Game 4 lineup:
- Taylor CF
- Seager SS
- Turner 3B
- Bellinger 1B
- Puig RF
- Forsythe 2B
- Barnes C
- Pederson DH
- Hernandez LF
Astros Game 4 lineup:
- Springer CF
- Bregman 3B
- Altuve 2B
- Correa SS
- Gurriel 1B
- Reddick RF
- Gattis DH
- Gonzalez LF
- McCann C
First pitch is slated for 5:20 p.m. Los Angeles time.
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