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Kiké Hernandez and Scott Van Slyke to start against left-hander Jeff Locke

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Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH---  The Dodgers will have three players in their starting lineup on Saturday against the Pirates who have just a few starts in the last few weeks. Since June 12, Kiké Hernandez and Scott Van Slyke have started twice and A.J. Ellis has started three times.

Also Trayce Thompson returns to the lineup, his first start since Monday against Washington.

The Dodgers have not hit well against left-handed pitching this season.  As a team, they are hitting .225 which tied for last in the NL and their 665 OPS is fourteenth in the NL.  They don't have any player with more than 8 plate appearances hitting over. 300 against left-handed pitching.

"It's been a crazy year in the sense we've seen a lot of righties,' manager Dave Roberts said, "I've run a lot a lot of left-handed bats this year, maybe more than expected because we've seen so many right-handers."

"It will balance itself more, we've missed some lefties," Roberts said, "but in the next ten days, we'll see three lefties, I think it will balance itself out and those guys will get in a better rhythm."

If Hernandez and Van Slyke can return to the hitters who did well against lefties in recent years, that would help.  Hernandez hit .423/.471/.744 in 2015 against lefties, this season he is hitting .218/.317/.491.

Van Slyke has a career .861 OPS against left-handed pitching.  He has only 10 PA against lefties in 2016 but he does have one home run.

Roberts looking forward to seeing Taylor play

"I've seen a lot of Chris [Taylor] when he was with the Mariners and when I was with the Padres, you see him a lot during the season, spring training," Roberts said, "His athleticism, the way he can play pretty much anywhere on the field, he's athletic and the bat is coming, I'm looking forward to putting eyes on him."

Taylor has played primarily shortstop and second base in the minors, did start a game at third base for Oklahoma City.  Roberts plans to use Taylor's versatility both for in-game substitutions and starts,

"He'll get some starts, he'll start Monday against Liriano, I'm not sure where," Roberts said, "going forward, we'll figure out spots for him."

Urias may get one more start after Milwaukee

Roberts was asked about Julio Urias pitching one more start past his next scheduled one on Tuesday in Milwaukee.

"Yeah, we're trying to talk through that," Roberts said. "There is no final decision. Like I said before, these games are important as any in the season, especially where we are at."

Fifth spot in rotation is open right now

Roberts ruled out Brandon McCarthy or Hyun-jin Ryu pitching next week in the now open fifth spot saying they'll each pitch at least one more rehab start.

Carlos Frias is an option, though he would have to replace a player going on the disabled list to rejoin the team before Friday.

"In the last couple of starts out there, he's performed and he's pitched well and I think there is something to that," Roberts said. "Five [innings] in Triple-A is not where he needs to be and not where we want him to be but the stuff plays.

"Where we are at in the pen leading up to that Wednesday start. That will give us some clarity what direction we can and should go."