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Dodgers have struggled against left-handed pitchers

Joe Sargent

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers try to snap their two-game losing streak on Friday night against the Pirates, and will do so against Francisco Liriano, trying to turn around their poor performance against left-handed pitchers this season.

The Dodgers are 6-6 in games started by opposing left-handed pitchers this season, but are hitting just .216/.268/.354 against southpaws on the season.

They are 25th in the majors in OPS against lefties, 30th in batting average, 29th in on-base percentage and 23rd in slugging percentage. Dodgers are hitting .224/.302/.362 against left-handed starters, and .206/.267/.367 against left-handed relievers.

Liriano has allowed 10 runs and 15 hits in 10 innings in his last two starts, with six walks and nine strikeouts. Only five current Dodgers have faced him. Chone Figgins is 4-for-16 (.250) with a double and seven strikeouts against him, and none of the rest have more than three plate appearances against Liriano.

Adrian Gonzalez is 1-for-2 with a walk, as is Justin Turner. Matt Kemp is 0-for-3 with two strikeouts, and Drew Butera is 0-for-1 with a walk.

Liriano's only career start against the Dodgers came in 2006, before the arm troubles, when he formed a dynamic ace duo with Johan Santana in Minnesota. Liriano struck out eight Dodgers and allowed two runs in seven innings on June 27 at the Metrodome. Kemp made his ninth career start in center field in that game, surpassing his eight starts in left field as a new primary position.

Kemp has normally crushed left-handers in his career to the tune of .332/.394/.552, but so far in 2014 is just 8-for-52 (.154) with three doubles against southpaws, including 0-for-his-last-13 with five strikeouts and a double play.

Josh Beckett tries to win his fourth straight start, and is making his first trip to the mound since his no-hitter on Sunday.

In his first start at home this season, on April 9 against Detroit, he lasted only four innings and gave up five runs, but he has been pretty steady since then, especially at home. In his last four starts at Dodger Stadium Beckett has allowed four total runs, putting up a 1.04 ERA with 23 strikeouts and eight walks in 26 innings during that span.

Beckett last won four consecutive starts from Sept. 4-21, 2007.

Only four active Pirates position players have faced Beckett in his career. Travis Snider is 5-for-14 (.357) with a home run and two walks, Russell Martin is 2-for-12 (.167) with a hit-by-pitch, Clint Barmes is 3-for-10 (.300), and Gaby Sanchez is 1-for-3 (.333).

Game info

Time: 7:10 p.m. PT

TV: SportsNet LA