The Dodgers conclude their homestand with a weekend series against the Pirates. Here is a look at the probable starting pitching matchups, which for Los Angeles is very much still up in the air, heading into the three-game set at Dodger Stadium.
Friday, 7:10 p.m. PT (SportsNet LA)
This is the matchup that is the closest to being written in pen, with Ross Stripling starting the opener. Stripling will be making his 10th start, giving the Dodgers three rookie pitchers with 10 starts for the first time since 1952.
That Brooklyn team got 24 starts from Ben Wade, 21 from Billy Loes, and 11 more from Johnny Rutherford. The 1952 Dodgers went 96-57 and won the National League pennant.
Ivan Nova was arguably the least-inspiring acquisition at the non-waiver trade deadline, with a 4.90 ERA with the Yankees in 2016 and a 5.31 ERA in 212 innings since the start of 2014 at the time of the trade for the free-agent-to-be. The right-hander allowed three runs in seven innings in a Saturday win over the Reds in his Pirates debut, with five strikeouts and no walks.
Saturday, 1:05 p.m. (SportsNet LA, Fox Sports 1)
Ideally, this start goes to Brandon McCarthy, presumably after making whatever adjustments necessary in his bullpen sessions on Tuesday and Thursday. In his first 162 major league starts, McCarthy’s career worst was four walks, done eight times but not since way back in 2009. But in his last two starts the right-hander has walked five batters each time.
If McCarthy is deemed unavailable, Julio Urias would likely slot in here after pitching five innings on Monday. Urias turns 20 on Friday.
The Dodgers missed Gerrit Cole in Pittsburgh, as the Pirates ace missed five weeks with a right triceps strain. Since returning from the disabled list, the former UCLA star has a 3.34 ERA in five starts, with 28 strikeouts and eight walks in 29⅔ innings.
The Fox Sports 1 broadcast, with Justin Kuchar and Eric Karros on the call, won’t be blacked out in the LA market.
Sunday, 1:10 p.m. (SportsNet LA)
In another game that is up in the air, this start could go to Brett Anderson after he made three minor league rehab starts, or Urias might slot in here as well if he isn’t used on Saturday.
Anderson last pitched Monday night for Oklahoma City in Iowa, allowing two runs in five innings while throwing 71 pitches and striking out two. The left-hander was himself on the mound, inducing 10 ground outs and a single fly out, but he missed out on the postgame festivities with Yasiel Puig, et al.
Apparently I went to sleep too early in Des Moines.— Brett Anderson (@BrettAnderson35) August 9, 2016
Chad Kuhl got the win in his major league debut against Clayton Kershaw on ‘Sunday Night Baseball’ on June 26 in Pittsburgh, and the rookie right-hander is the only one of the two to pitch since then. Kuhl has a 3.91 ERA in five starts, with 17 strikeouts and nine walks in 25... innings, and has three quality starts in his last four outings.