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Dodgers Return To The Land of Starter Relief

After the Dodgers saw their starting pitchers get torched at Coors Field over the weekend, to the tune of 19 hits, 13 walks, and a 10.43 ERA over 14.2 innings, the Dodgers need some relief from, if not for, their starters.

Enter the relative paradise of Pac Bell SBC AT&T Park.

In their past 18 games in San Francisco, Dodger starting pitchers have gone 9-0 with a 1.97 ERA and 1.13 WHIP over 105 innings, allowing only three home runs during that span. In fact, Dodger starters have allowed more than two runs only twice during that span. The last Dodger starting pitcher to get hung with a loss in San Francisco was Brad Penny in August 2006.

Randy Wolf, who has pitched 20 innings over his last three starts, will try to stabilize the shaky Dodger rotation as he takes the hill for tonight's 7:15 start on KCAL.

Barry Zito will start for the Giants, who have been having pitching problems of their own, notably in the bullpen.

Ken Gurnick tells us that after some rest the back end of the bullpen -- Jonathan Broxton, Hong-Chih Kuo, and Ronald Belisario -- should all be available for action Monday if needed.

Given that the rate of complaining about the lineup this year relative to it's stability, I found this passage from Ken Gurnick amusing:

Torre said he's received little static from players about his lineups, saying this club is "a pretty easy group right now. When you win, that's pretty much the case."

"Some guys spend so much time on the bench griping about not playing they forget it's time to get in the game," Torre said. "This club is very professional."

Speaking of lineups, Tony Jackson tells us that James Loney sits tonight against the lefty Zito:

Furcal SS
Hudson 2B
Ramirez LF
Kemp CF (Kemp has 15 career PA batting cleanup entering tonight)
Ethier RF
Martin C
Loretta 1B
Blake 3B
Wolf P

Get your guesses in the game score thread. There are only four more games left to win this book!

Box Score | Gameday