Dodgers Ready For Another Home Opener

After dropping two of three in Pittsburgh, the Dodgers finish their season-opening trip in Miami.  Tonight is the home opener for the Marlins, the second of three home openers to be played by the Dodgers in a nine-day span.  The Dodgers have won 10 of their last 13 games at Sun Life Stadium. 

Hiroki Kuroda, who is starting tonight, has made his first start in San Diego in each of the last two seasons, allowing one run in a win in both 2008 and 2009.  Kuroda plans to honor a decade-long teammate who passed away this week, writes Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times.

The Marlins took two of three from the Mets at Citi Field in their first series of the year.  Chris Volstad, who has beaten the Dodgers twice in three career starts, takes the mound for Florida.  The Dodgers did touch up Volstad last season, scoring four runs off him in both of his starts.  Volstad allowed eight runs, 15 hits, and three home runs in 11 1/3 innings against the Dodgers last season, and had four walks against five strikeouts.

Kemp on a Steak Streak 

Matt Kemp had a sacrifice fly in the third inning Thursday, and an RBI double in the fifth, the third straight game to start the season that Kemp has had at least one run batted in:

Day RBI Details
Mon 2 Two-run single
Wed 1 RBI double
Thu   
2 Sac fly, RBI double

Since the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles, only four men have had longer RBI streaks to open the season:

RBI in Consecutive Team Games to Start Season
Player Year Games RBI
Ron Cey 1977 7 9
Jim Wynn 1974 6 12
J.D. Drew 2006 5 7
Eric Karros 1995 5 9
Ron Cey 1974 5 9
Thanks to the great Baseball-Reference.com

Olmedo Saenz (2005, 2006) and Paul Lo Duca (2001) had individual streaks longer than Kemp, but they both missed games in their streak.

Other Notes

  • Ronnie Belliard, who yesterday became just the eighth Los Angeles Dodger to hit a double, triple, and home run in the same game, now has a .690 slugging percentage in 90 plate appearances with the club, the highest in franchise history for anyone with as few as 20 plate appearances.  The only two other marks above .600 are Marlon Anderson (.644 in 102 PA) and Manny Ramirez (.601 in 671 PA).
  • Hong-Chih Kuo had a positive bullpen session yesterday and could return soon without the need of a minor league rehabilitation assignment, writes Tony Jackson of ESPN LA.
  • After missing opening day due to the birth of his daughter, Ramon Troncoso has pitched a scoreless inning in each of the last two games.  Last season, Troncoso pitched wonderfully in 16 appearances with zero days rest, allowing just one earned run in 18 innings.
  • The five Dodger reserves -- all of whom started the finale in Pittsburgh -- collectively have 11 hits in 26 at-bats with six extra-base hits, and are hitting .423/.429/.769 as a group through the first three games of the season.
  • Brad Ausmus, who Thursday moved into a tie with Al Lopez for seventh place for most games caught (1,918), also tied former Dodger Shawn Green for the all-time Jewish record for most games played (1.951), per JewishMajorLeaguers.org.
  • Thursday was minor league opening day, and the top four Dodgers' minor league affiliates are all on Twitter: Triple A (@ABQTopes), Double A (@ChattLookouts), High A (@66ersBaseball), and Low A (@GreatLakesLoons).  You can also follow them all at twitter.com/truebluela/minors

Scheduled Pitchers in Miami

Fri 4:18pm Hiroki Kuroda vs. Chris Volstad
Sat 4:10pm Vicente Padilla vs. Josh Johnson
Sun   10:10am    Charlie Haeger vs Anibal Sanchez

Tonight's Game

Check out Xeifrank's simulation of tonight's game here.

Time: 4:18pm

TV: Prime Ticket

Baseball Reference Preview | Box Score | Gameday

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