Scott Van Slyke gets the start in left field, batting fifth, which was expected since Van Slyke will have now started 35 of the 36 games against left-handed starters this season. Van Slyke is back with the team after his wife Audrey gave birth to their second son, Elijah, on Wednesday morning.
The other switch is Dee Gordon getting a day off at second base. He has actually hit better against left-handers this season (.739 OPS) than right-handers (.689), but that is a change from both his career and minor league numbers. Manager Don Mattingly has said repeatedly in recent weeks that he has no plans to platoon Gordon, who is in a 3-for-29 slump overall, though two of those hits came on Wednesday in seven at-bats.
Another day of rest for Gordon isn't the worst thing in the world, since he's hitting .267/.287/.324 since the All-Star break, and Justin Turner is building a case for the best season by a Los Angeles Dodgers fifth infielder.
Turner, who homered on Wednesday, has six multi-hit games in his last eight starts and is hitting .385/.461/.526 since the beginning of August. He bats sixth.
With Gordon out, Yasiel Puig bats in the leadoff spot, in center field.
With the off day and the spot start by Carlos Frias on Wednesday, the Dodgers had some room to shuffle their starting rotation. Hyun-Jin Ryu will now pitch Saturday and Zack Greinke Sunday against the Diamondbacks. The original plan was to have Greinke pitch Saturday and Ryu Sunday. At the very least, it allows the Dodgers to not throw left-handers Ryu and Clayton Kershaw back-to-back against the Giants in their two upcoming series. No word yet if Greinke's recent elbow discomfort played a role in the switch.