Dodgers Look to Finish Road Trip Strong in Tampa Bay

Last week, we talked about how the Los Angeles Dodgers pitching staff was going to have a big test ahead of them on their current road trip. As with everything else this season, some unexpected things happened in that regard, good and bad.

The Dodgers started their trip in St. Louis, and lost the last three of that four game series. Clayton Kershaw, still dealing with his mother’s recent death, only lasted 3.2 in the finale of the series, one of the shortest outings of his entire career. Tony Gonsolin was the only one who allowed no runs that series. However, he only lasted 5.0 innings because his pitch count got too high in the process.

The bullpen had to cover at least four innings of every game in St. Louis and at some points, the west and tear definitely showed.

The Dodgers fared better in Atlanta as far as outcomes, but needed to cover 13 innings. Bobby Miller had a spectacular debut, going 5.0 innings and allowing only one run against a dangerous Braves offense.

The offense was what helped the Dodgers be in contention for the win in all of those games. They scored 42 runs across the six games, and multiple times had a chance to take the lead in the ninth.

After a much needed day off in Tampa Bay, the Dodgers now face the top team in all of baseball. The Rays are 37-15, four games better than any team in the majors.

Tampa leads the majors in home runs, runs, stolen bases, one base percentage, slugging, and OPS, all while their pitching staff is top five in the majors.

But the Dodgers may be catching a break with regards to Tampa’s pitching. On Friday, they will face left hander Jalen Beeks, who will act as an opener. He is 1-2 in 18 games with a 4.68 ERA. Right hander Cooper Criswell is then expected to handle the bulk of the innings. In 11.1 innings of work, he has allowed 10 runs and 15 hits.

Noah Syndergaard will start for the Dodgers on Friday.

Saturday will see the return of Tyler Glasnow to the Rays rotation. Glasnow has been on the injured list dealing with an oblique injury. He threw four and six innings in his first two rehab starts with the Rays Triple-A team, and the team looks for him to throw about 80-90 pitches.

The Dodgers will counter with Clayton Kershaw, who on Friday was reinstated from the bereavement list. Before the short time away from the team, Kershaw said he had been dealing with some fatigue. He said on Friday that although he did not get to throw a bullpen this week, he feels fresh and ready to go.

In the corresponding move, Tayler Scott was optioned back to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Sunday’s game will be very early for fans in the Pacific time zone, as the game starts at 8:35am there, and 11:35am in Tampa. Gavin Stone is slated to make his third big league start, and Tampa has not yet announced who their starter will be.

Before Friday’s game, the team announced that they had claimed RHP Zack Burdi off waivers from the Rays, whom they DFA’d earlier this week. Burdi has an option year left, and was a teammate of Will Smith’s at Louisville. Tyler Cyr was moved to the 60-day IL in the corresponding move.

If the offense can stay as hot as it’s been, the Dodgers have a good chance of winning two out of three from the hottest team in baseball.

Dodgers Pitching Will Be Tested on Longest Road Trip of Season

The Los Angeles Dodgers are embarking on their longest road trip of the season, which will take them to three cities for 10 games.

The team was the last in the majors to play any American League teams, but finished their last home stand by taking two of three from the AL Central leading Minnesota Twins.

Now they hit the road to take on more first place teams, in a trip that will surely test their beleaguered pitching staff.

The bullpen has been stretched very thin by consecutive short outings by Noah Syndergaard and Clayton Kershaw. Syndergaard has been dealing with a blister that broke wide open during his previous outing. Then on Wednesday, the Dodgers lost Dustin May to what the team is calling “right flexor pronator strain”.

How long May will be out in unknown at this point. His strain is Grade 1, but his already repaired UCL is still intact. The current plan is for May to receive a PRP shot to try to avoid surgery, and best case scenario is a four to six week return.

Before Thursday’s game, the Dodgers placed May on the IL and recalled Andre Jackson and Justin Bruihl from Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Dylan Covey, who was originally on the taxi squad, was designated for assignment. Covey came in to cover for May after May left the game after only one inning, going 4.0 innings and allowing two solo home runs, keeping the Dodgers in the game.

The Dodgers will start their road trip Thursday evening with a four game series in St Louis, facing a Cardinals team that is much improved from when they met earlier this month. Over their last 10 games, after having been swept by the Dodgers, the Red Birds have gone 8-2 facing the Red Sox, Cubs, and Brewers.

Clayton Kershaw was expected to go on the bereavement list following his start Tuesday night, but that may be pushed back until after his Sunday start. Kershaw lost his mother last Saturday morning but has stayed with the team so far.

The pitching matchups for the Cardinals series will be Thursday, Julio Urías and Adam Wainwright. Friday, Tony Gonsolin and Steven Matz. Saturday, Noah Syndergaard and Miles Mikolas. Sunday will be Kershaw and Jack Flaherty.

After the Dodgers are done in St Louis, the Will head to Atlanta to take on the Braves, and then to Tampa Bay to battle the AL East leading Rays.

Dodgers Injury News and Notes – Syndergaard, Buehler Update and More

If the Los Angeles Dodgers could somehow manage to maintain their pace of one clunker game followed by two to three good ones, well then they’d be in great shape at the end of the season.

The Dodgers just finished a road trip which took them to San Diego and Milwaukee. The first game of each series was not great, but they managed to scrape two hard fought wins in San Diego, and then cruise to another two wins in Milwaukee.

Continue reading “Dodgers Injury News and Notes – Syndergaard, Buehler Update and More”

Thoughts on the Dodgers Season So Far

When the Los Angeles Dodgers would sputter in past seasons, I never really worried. Ever the eternal Dodgers optimist, I always knew they had enough talent to get through whatever team slump was happening and show what a strong team they were.

(This applied to the regular season only, obviously).

But this season is the first where I have seriously doubts about the team overall.

Continue reading “Thoughts on the Dodgers Season So Far”

Dodgers News and Notes – Kershaw Gets Win 200, Depth Woes and More

We as Los Angeles Dodgers fans are so lucky to be watching greatness every five to six days and on Tuesday night, Clayton Kershaw showed us exactly why.

Kershaw turned in a vintage performance for his 200th career win, going 7.0 scoreless innings, striking out nine and walking none. After Jason Heyward bobbled a line drive to right field, allowing the batter to reach third on the very first at bat of the game, Kershaw proceeded to strike out the next three, stranding that runner. He didn’t allow anyone else past second the rest of the game.

Continue reading “Dodgers News and Notes – Kershaw Gets Win 200, Depth Woes and More”

Dodgers News and Notes – Injury Updates, A Look at the Division, and More

The Los Angeles Dodgers are one week into the 2023 season, currently sporting a record of 4-2, and all alone in first place in the division.

The name of the game this early in the season is small sample size, of course, but we are still going to use it to compare and contrast players on the Dodgers and teams in the NL West.

Continue reading “Dodgers News and Notes – Injury Updates, A Look at the Division, and More”

Dodgers Announce Opening Day Roster, and Thoughts Going Into Season

The Los Angeles Dodgers are poised to begin another playoff run in 2023, what would be over a decade of making the playoffs for the Boys in Blue.

This season will start with a bit more uncertainty than a lot of those previous teams, however. Gone are many of the players that helped lead the team to breaking the team record in wins, twice.

Continue reading “Dodgers Announce Opening Day Roster, and Thoughts Going Into Season”

Dodgers News and Notes: Freeman Injury Update and More

The Los Angeles Dodgers now find themselves just two weeks away from the start of the 2023 season.

Several of the Dodgers players have been participating in the World Baseball Classic. Team USA, with Mookie Betts and Will Smith, and Team Mexico, with Julio Urías and Austin Barnes, have both moved on to the second round.

Teams Canada and Great Britain did not advance, meaning that Freddie Freeman and Trayce Thompson are both back at Dodgers camp.

Continue reading “Dodgers News and Notes: Freeman Injury Update and More”

Gavin Lux Likely Out for Season with Torn ACL

About that vaunted Los Angeles Dodgers depth…

This statement is indeed tongue in cheek, as normally the Dodgers do have a ton of depth at almost every position on the team and in the farm system. But, this season, they’re a little lean everywhere. And, of course, three games into Spring Training, a major player incurs a major injury.

Continue reading “Gavin Lux Likely Out for Season with Torn ACL”