Chad Billingsley went to high school roughly 190 miles from Great American Ballpark, where the Dodgers open a three-game series today. Billingsley, who was drafted out of Defiance High School in 2003, was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame this year. He is 1-1 in two career starts in Cincinnati, but has only given up one run in each game.
In August, Billingsley has had four solid starts, albeit in somewhat limited action due to a pair of leg injuries. In his last 23 innings, Billingsley has a 2.35 ERA. Billingsley appears to be healthy now, and as Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reported:
Billingsley continues to pitch with his tender left hamstring wrapped and continues to say it doesn't bother him
Could it be that Billingsley is simply showing defiance?
Billingsley's mound opponent tonight, Homer Bailey, has simply been awful this season. In 12 starts, Bailey has a 6.82 ERA and a 5.74 FIP in 62 innings. The Dodgers hammered him for nine runs in 2.2 innings last month at Dodger Stadium.
To clear up some confusion, Tony Abreu, who was optioned to Triple A Albuquerque yesterday, cannot be called up for ten days or until the Isotopes' season ends, whichever comes first. This has been confirmed by the Dodgers. Of course, in case of injury (the Blake DeWitt gambit, if you will), Abreu could be recalled sooner if needed. However, Abreu will likely not be back with the Dodgers until September 6 at the earliest.
The Dodgers have won 20 of their last 23 games against the Reds, including their last nine. The Dodgers swept the Reds in Los Angeles just over a month ago:
July 22: Dodgers 7, Reds 5
July 23: Dodgers 12, Reds 3
July 24: Dodgers 6, Reds 2
The Dodgers are 8-3 in their last 11 games in Cincinnati.
Today: Chad Billingsley (12-7, 3.43 FIP) vs. Homer Bailey (3-4, 5.74 FIP), 4:10pm (KCAL)
Saturday: Charlie Haeger (1-1, 4.79 FIP) vs. Matt Maloney (0-2, 7.00 FIP), 1:10pm (Fox)
Sunday: Clayton Kershaw (8-7, 3.21 FIP) vs. Bronson Arroyo (11-12, 5.05 FIP), 10:10am (KCAL)
Get your guesses in for "Just A Bit Outside" here.
Game Time: 4:10pm