The reeling Dodgers look to snap their four-game losing streak on Wednesday afternoon with a great getaway day pitching matchup. Clayton Kershaw and Cliff Lee take the mound in the series finale against the Phillies, the first Dodgers game involving two former Cy Young Award winners starting against one another since Greg Maddux and Barry Zito dueled on September 19, 2008.
Kershaw opened his second half with a win Friday against the Padres, allowing one run in six innings. He has won his last two home starts.
Remember earlier in the season when Kershaw's strikeouts were down? Through 12 starts this year Kershaw struck out 21.5% of his batters faced, compared to 27.2% last season, and had at least as many strikeouts as innings pitched in just four starts. But since then Kershaw has done that six times in seven starts, striking out 29.8% of his hitters, and on the season now has 125 strikeouts in 126 2/3 innings.
When the Dodgers last saw Lee, he was delivering a typical Cliff Lee performance on them with 12 strikeouts and a 1-0 lead in the eighth inning on June 5 in Philadelphia. Lee ran his personal scoreless streak against the Dodgers to 30 consecutive innings before Elian Herrera played hero with a two-run double and a stunning Dodgers win.
Since that game, Lee has a 5.59 ERA in six starts though he did pick up his first win of the season on July 4. In 15 starts this season, Lee is averaging 6.89 innings per outing with a strikeout-to-walk ratio of nearly five (4.86, fourth-best in baseball this season) but he has just one win to show for it and a 3.92 ERA.
Lee (2.9 runs scored per 27 outs while he was in the game) and Kershaw (3.1) have received the fourth and fifth-lowest run support in the National League this season.
- The Dodgers have scored two runs or less in 16 of their last 26 games, averaging 2.27 runs per game during that span.
- Since the dead ball era ended, the only Dodgers teams to score as few as 59 runs in a 26-game span, as this year's team as done, were in 1968 (the year of the pitcher) and 1927 (one stretch of 58 runs in 26 games)
- The Dodgers are 6-19 since June 19, their worst 25-game stretch since losing 19 of 25 games from September 19, 1992 to April 15, 1993.
- In seven career starts against the Phillies, Kershaw is 0-4 with a 4.95 ERA, his highest ERA against any team he has faced more than once.
- The Phillies have beaten the Dodgers seven straight times at Dodger Stadium.
Game Time: 12:10 p.m.
TV: Prime Ticket