Ely, Dodgers Primed to Face Punchless Astros

The Dodgers go for their eighth straight win tonight, and just might have the perfect pitcher to face the struggling Astros.  However, without Andre Ethier and Rafael Furcal, the question just might be whether or not the Dodgers can score enough runs to beat the worst offensive team in baseball.

In his major league debut in New York, John Ely gave up four runs in the second inning, and one more in the third inning.  In the third inning, Ely intentionally walked the number eight hitter, Rod Barajas, to get to pitcher John Maine.  Ely struck out Maine, and retired 10 of his last 11 batters faced, and he hasn't looked back since.  Since walking Barrajas, Ely hasn't issued another free pass.  In fact, over those last 59 batters faced, he hasn't even allowed an extra-base hit, and opposing hitters are only hitting .186/.186/.186.

John Ely Since Last Walk
Batters Faced     
59
Strikeouts 16     27.1%
Line Drives 8 (5 hits)
13.6%
Grounders 20 (6 hits)
33.9%
OF Flyballs 9 15.3%
IF Popups 6 10.2%

Ely has made three major league starts, has two of the five no-walk starts by the Dodgers this season, and faces a team in Houston that just doesn't walk.  The entire National League walks in 9.2% of its plate appearances.  The team in 15th place is the Giants, a long-standing punchline for offensive impatience, and even they walk in 8.1% of their plate appearances. 

The Astros?  They have walked in an anemic 5.6% of their plate appearances, far and away the worst in the league.  The Astros have walked just 74 times all season, slightly over half as many walks as the Dodgers (141).

Other Notes

Xeifrank's simulation of today's game is here.

Game Time: 7:10pm

TV:  Prime Ticket

Baseball Reference Preview | Box Score | Gameday

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