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Dodgers scoring more in the first inning this season

Chase Utley and Corey Seager have the most plate appearances in the first inning for the Dodgers this season.
Chase Utley and Corey Seager have the most plate appearances in the first inning for the Dodgers this season.
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers try for a fourth straight series win in the finale of their road trip on Sunday afternoon, and to beat the Rockies will look for yet another hot start, in the very first inning.

In each of their last three games, the Dodgers have scored at least a run in the first inning, and on the season have outscored opponents in the opening frame 17-6, the best run differential in the first inning in the National League.

The only NL team to score more first-inning runs than the Dodgers this season are the Nationals, with 24 runs. Washington is off to a 13-4 start this season.

The Dodgers are hitting a collective .324/.370/.568 in the first inning, thanks in large part to Corey Seager going 6-for-14 (.429) with a double and a home run, and Chase Utley putting up a .333 on-base percentage in the most plate appearances on the team (15) but also with two triples and a double (.615 slugging percentage).

The club has scored in the first even with Justin Turner at 2-for-14 (.143) in the opening frame so far. Yasiel Puig has struggled as well; his double on Saturday made him 1-for-8 (.125) but with two walks.

But those slumps have been made up for some part-timers in that spot of the lineup. Kiké Hernandez is 3-for-3 with a home run, a double and a walk, all from the leadoff spot. Joc Pederson is 3-for-3, and Austin Barnes is 1-for-1.

Adrian Gonzalez is 3-for-8 (.375) with a home run and a team-best four RBI in the first inning.

The first-inning bonanza is different from last year, when the Dodgers scored 72 runs in the first inning, topping that total in the second, third, fifth and sixth frames. Those 72 runs were tied for 13th in the National League, and were fewer than the 86 runs given up by Dodgers pitchers in the first.

They will try to get off to another fast start on Sunday afternoon against Jordan Lyles, with a 6.00 ERA in three starts this season. Though in the first inning he has retired all nine batters faced to date.

Lyles has a career 5.12 ERA in 107 games, including 100 starts, and in just one of his five major league seasons (2013) he has had an ERA under 5.00. But in his career in the first inning his ERA is 3.78.

Alex Wood looks to get back on track after his four-inning start on Tuesday in Atlanta. He sports a 5.06 ERA in three starts this year, and has allowed two of his 12 runs in the first inning, with opposing batters 4-for-12 (.333) with a walk and a sacrifice fly.

Game info

Time: 1:10 p.m. PT

TV: SportsNet LA