If it seems like the Dodgers have been playing a lot of early games lately, it's because they have been. They close out their series with the Marlins this morning with a rare 9:10 a.m. start (12:10 p.m. in Florida), their earliest game of the season. Today is the Dodgers' fifth day game in the last seven days, and it wouldn't be day baseball without Chad Billingsley on the mound.
Billingsley, who had a 0.94 ERA in six starts during the day in 2010, is making his third straight day start this season and fourth daytime start (our of six total starts) of the year. This season, Billingsley has a 3.12 ERA in three starts during the day, including giving up one earned run (two total) in 14 1/3 innings over his last two starts.
Superficially, Billingsley and Anibal Sanchez had very similar 2010 seasons:
Sanchez is fresh off a one-hitter in his last start, during which he shut down the Rockies, allowing one unearned run while striking out nine. It was one of three career complete games for Sanchez giving up one-hit or less, including his no-hitter back in 2006. By comparison, the Dodgers have had three one-hitters in the past eight years, by Hiroki Kuroda, Derek Lowe, and Kazuhisa Ishii.
Juan Uribe (fifth straight game) and Casey Blake (third straight game) sit again today, as does Jerry Sands. Rod Barajas (2-for-5 off Sanchez) starts, on a day game after a night game.
- Billingsley has made two career starts in Miami, and has given up one run in each game, both wins. But the starts were in 2006 and 2008
- Not too many Marlins have faced Billingsley. The only one with more than six plate appearances against Billingsley is Hanley Ramirez, who is 2-for-11 with a home run (.182/.308/.415) with two walks and five strikeouts
- No Dodger has faced Sanchez in more than six PA. Andre Ethier, he of the 23-game hitting streak, is 0-for-6 against Sanchez
- Today is the final game of a stretch of 20 games in 20 days for the Dodgers. They are 9-10 in the first 19 games, and are 12-13 on the season
Game Time: 9:10 a.m.
TV: Prime Ticket