Dodgers Head to Anaheim Hoping Offensive Momentum Continues

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(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Throughout the season, Los Angeles Dodgers offense has been raising concerns about extended slumps during this shortened season. On Thursday night, though, the bats exploded for 11 runs to remain undefeated in series play this year and split a four-game set with the Padres.

Mookie Betts looked like he was worth every penny of that $365 million deal, as he belted three home runs on a 4-for-4 night. That historical performance put him alongside Sammy Sosa and Johnny Mize as the only players in history with six career three-homer games. The home run has been the Dodgers offense best friend all year, and they hit six yesterday, with three coming in the first two innings off Padres’ starter Chris Paddack.

The night started with the Dodgers down after Julio Urias gave up back-to-back home runs on back-to-back pitches in the first. However, Urias did a nice job of settling down and retired 16 out of the next 17 batters. Corey Seager returned to the lineup and made his presence known as he hit a two-run home run in his first.

A.J. Pollock also went deep while continuing his hot start, and Chris Taylor, who’s been hitting extremely well, went 3-for-4 on the night. Austin Barnes also went deep for his first homer of the season and had a nice night going 2-for-4 with two RBI.

The win put the Dodgers record at 13-7 and in a first-place NL West tie with the Rockies. Even with all the past struggles, the Dodgers still find themselves with one of the best records in baseball. They won’t see the Rockies until late next week, as it could be a crucial series as far as the standings go.

With scoreboard watching not very customary 20 games into a regular season, it is strange keeping up with the standings with these records, but since a quarter of the season is gone and the halfway point is only ten games away, it might as well be.

After splitting with the Padres, the Dodgers will face a couple of American League opponents in the next few days. The first being the crosstown Angels in Anaheim for a three-game freeway series. Then, they will face the Seattle Mariners for four straight games, the first two in Los Angeles and the other two in Seattle.

With the freeway series next, there is always an extra urge for Dodger fans to beat the Angels with the teams playing so close from each other and fans sharing space whether that be work, school, or even their own household.

This will be the second series the Dodgers play with an American League team, the first being the two-game sweep of the Astros in Houston. The Dodgers did get a small sample size of the Angels back in Summer Camp when they faced them in the last exhibition game before the season started.

The Angels come in with a 7-12 record, but they still have Mike Trout, who once again is tearing it up. Last season, the Angels seemed to have the Dodgers number as they took all four games.

The three probable starters for the Dodgers for the three games series will be Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, and Dustin May.

Kershaw will take the ball Friday night for his third start of the season. He struggled in his last start giving up four runs and taking the loss and three homers.

The probable pitching matchup in the opener for Kershaw is against lefty Patrick Sandoval.

First pitch is set 6:40 p.m. pacific time.

 

10 thoughts on “Dodgers Head to Anaheim Hoping Offensive Momentum Continues

  1. No matter how good we are or how bad the Angels are, they always seem to play good baseball against us. Let’s hope their lack of pitching and our recently awakened offense allows us to take at least 2 of 3 this weekend.

    As I was watching Mookie’s performance last night a smile came to my face when I realized we have him for 12 more years. No going into the winter in the hopes we might be the lucky ones to sign him. It’s a very reassuring thought.

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    1. Yes the Angels always seem to have the Dodgers number for some reason, Mookie signing that extension gave all Dodgers a sense of relief knowing there wouldn’t be any offseason waiting and speculating

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  2. Unfortunately the hitters that are hitting, hit and the hitters that aren’t hitting, did not. We can’t count on 3 hitters scoring 11 runs to often. Actually the same thing in the previous game. Now I’m getting worried. Maybe angels triple A pitching staff can help solve the problem. Oh wait. Padres and giants also have triple A pitching staffs. Now I’m really worried.

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    1. Belli has hit the ball hard in the past couple of games, Muncy not so much.
      Don’t worry Gordon, between AAA pitching staffs and pitchers getting scratched with injuries (both deGrom and Montas scratched with injuries today), we won’t be facing an entire MLB pitching staff until the playoffs. Plenty of time to worry in October if Max, Belli and Joc are still hitting like this.

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    2. I would disagree about the Padres pitching staff being AAA quality. They have some very solid young arms that’s just need experience. I hope everyone realizes they are here to stay. Years of perpetual sucking and trading their best veteran players for young prospects years away from the big leagues is now paying off. I don’t think the Rockies can keep this up but SD is going to be a fight until the end.

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      1. You’re right about the Pads being here to stay. They are already impressive and will become more so as the kids get more playing time. As good as their young pitchers are, that staff, in my mind, is still not consistent enough to be scary. By next year it probably will be.

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  3. Solid young arms still means triple A. Got to give them a few more years then we’ll know. Just can’t see padres as a contender in the foreseeable future. Too many questions in my mind. Tatis and a few young pitchers with some potential. A aging team with a few young prospect’s. Not sure why everyone is so high on their potential.

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  4. According to Joe Kelly, Mookie likes nothing better than seeing his teammates succeed and has been spending time talking hitting with Barnes. Whether that is at all responsible for his better hitting in the last few days we may never know but it’s just one more reason to be thrilled with the signing.

    We all know how important talent is in putting a team together but AF has rightfully put a lot of weight on the character of the guys he’s signing and it’s paying off big time.

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  5. Good game last night. Had a few butterflies when the BP got knocked around a bit in the late innings. But overall I was very happy. Love how Barnsie has kept from going insane and learned how to hit again. Belli made solid contact 3 times and that is a vast improvement. Love the hustle the team has been showing the last couple of days. Seager and Pollock ran hard on grounders that would have probably been double plays and got RBI’s instead. The fire RVS chants should go away for a few days. Now lets see if Muncy and Joc can get untracked. Joc won’t play today with another lefty going, me, I would sit Muncy again and run the exact same lineup out there, but move Hernandez down into the 8 hole and Rios up.

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  6. Smith looks like he might be headed to the IL. He still has stiffness in his neck and is unable to move his head from side to side. I have had this happen before and it can take a week or more for it to go away. Ruiz may be on the horizon.

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