Dodgers Face Old Nemesis in Francis

It has been so long since the Dodgers faced Jeff Francis that the last time he toed the rubber against Los Angeles the Rockies had won three straight series against the Dodgers.  That was a long time ago, on September 12, 2008.  The Dodgers won that night, ended up winning the series, and have won every series with Colorado since, eight in all.

Francis underwent shoulder surgery and missed all of last season, but has pitched well in his two starts since coming back this season.  He has thrown two quality starts, and after allowing a run in his first inning back, he hasn't given up a run in his last 12 1/3 innings.  In his career against the Dodgers, Francis has been a quality start machine, with 12 in 14 starts.  Francis is 5-3 with a 2.73 ERA against them, and has averaged 6.36 innings per start.

Perhaps the Dodgers should take advice on how to deal with Francis from the master:

Meanwhile, for the Dodgers, Carlos Monasterios shakes the rust off his arm to make his second big league start.  He last pitched on May 19, pitching three innings of scoreless relief against the Padres.  He had seven days of rest between outings before that start, and he will pitch tonight on eight days rest.

Heat Check

Each team has an infielder who has been scorching hot over the last 10 games:

Player PA 2B HR Runs RBI BA/OBP/SLG OPS
Troy Tulowitzki   43 2 5 10 9 .368/.442/.816 1.258
Casey Blake 41 2 4 7 8 .421/.463/.789 1.253

Just For Fun

Here's a look at the players from the trade with the White Sox this past winter, using Wins Above Replacement metrics from Fangraphs and Baseball Prospectus.

Player Team WAR WARP
John Ely LA 1.6 0.9
Jon Link LA 0.0 (0.4)
LA Totals 1.6 0.5

Juan Pierre   
CWS 0.5 0.5

Notes

  • Andre Ethier will play two games in Memphis with Triple A Albuquerque, tonight and tomorrow, on a rehabilitation assignment.  He will join the Dodgers Monday in Los Angeles, and could be activated
  • Scott Elbert is in Colorado (as first reported by commenter RxApple, and confirmed by Dylan Hernandez and Ken Gurnick).  Nick Green has been designated for assignment to make room for Elbert
  • At 13-4, the Dodgers have the best intra-divisional record in baseball
  • The Dodgers have won 19 of their last 25 games against the Rockies, including winning nine of the last 12 in Coors Field
  • New reliever Justin Miller is number 45 with the Dodgers
  • Carson Cistulli of Fangraphs is looking forward to the Sunday matchup of the series, specifically watching Clayton Kershaw throw his fastball
  • The Rockies are 14-7 at Coors Field this season, including six straight home wins.  They have won five straight games overall

Lineups

Dodgers      Rockies
SS Furcal

CF Gonzalez
C Martin LF
Smith
LF Manny

1B Helton   
CF Kemp SS Tulowitzki   
3B Blake
RF Hawpe   
1B Belliard        
C Olivo
RF Johnson 3B Stewart
2B Carroll
2B Barmes
P Monasterios
P Francis

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

Game Time: 6:10pm

TV:  KCAL

Baseball Reference Preview | Box Score | Gameday

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