The Dodgers will try to win their series against the Braves today, sending Clayton Kershaw to the hill against Jair Jurrjens of Atlanta. Kershaw has made two starts against the Braves in his career, and both games were at Dodger Stadium. In one game, Kershaw struck out 10 in seven scoreless innings and the Dodgers lost, and in the other game Kershaw allowed four runs (three earned) in 6 2/3 innings, a Dodger win.
Kershaw has only faced five current members of the Braves -- Martin Pardo, Nate McLouth, Dan Uggla, David Ross, and Jason Heyward -- and those five are a combined 2-for-24 with two walks and nine strikeouts. Heyward, who is 0-for-4 with four punchouts against Kershaw and a whopping 2-for-30 in his career at Dodger Stadium, is getting his first day off of the season today for the Braves. Old friend Ross, who is 1-for-4 with a walk against Kershaw, will give Brian McCann a rest behind the plate today.
Jon Garland's complete game last night pushes the Dodger starting staff's average to exactly 6.0 innings per start so far this season. In their last four games, Dodger starters have allowed three runs in 30 1/3 innings, lowering their collective ERA on the season to 3.95.
The flip side of that is that the bullpen has a 6.17 ERA, which is worst in the league. During the homestand, the Dodger bullpen has allowed 24 runs (21 earned) and 37 hits in 19 innings.
Jerry Sands gets his first day off today. Tony Gwynn is starting in left field, and leading off.
Game Time: 12:10 p.m.
TV: Prime Ticket