The Dodgers continue to get by despite decreasing production from their starting rotation, but send their two healthiest starting pitchers to the mound in the first two games of their three-game series against the Phillies in Philadelphia.
Since Clayton Kershaw last pitched on June 26, the Dodgers are 24-16, trailing only Washington (25-15) among National League teams since then. But that is despite a starting rotation that has put up a 4.93 ERA in those 40 games, all while averaging 4.88 innings per start.
Dodgers starters in that span have failed to record an out in the sixth inning 24 times in 40 games, and have pitched a total of 195⅓ innings, barely more than the bullpen (173 innings, 4.33 per game) during the same time.
In August the cracks have started to show, with the starters owning a collective 6.54 ERA while averaging 4.36 innings per start. The Dodgers are 6-6 this month.
But in the first two games at Citizens Bank Park, the Dodgers send their two pitchers with more than 16 starts this season, a duo that combined to allow three runs in 11 innings against the Phillies last week at Dodger Stadium.
Here is the schedule and probable starters for this three-game series in Philadelphia.
Tuesday, 4:05 p.m. PT (SportsNet LA)
The Dodgers have won Kenta Maeda’s last four starts, with the right-hander putting up 17 strikeouts and two walks to go with his 3.57 ERA in 22⅔ innings during that span. He got the win against Philadelphia in his last start, last Tuesday, allowing three runs in five innings.
Maeda got the win thanks in large part to the Dodgers scoring nine runs in 4⅔ innings, including three home runs, against Vince Velasquez, who starts the opener for the Phillies. Velasquez allowed only three home runs total in his previous nine starts, with a 2.96 ERA during that span.
Wednesday, 4:05 p.m. (SportsNet LA)
Dodgers vs. Phillies
Dodgers vs. Phillies
Scott Kazmir has lasted at least six innings in every other start in his last 10 starts, though if that trend continues that means fewer than six innings on Wednesday. Kazmir pitched six scoreless innings against the Phillies last week before his two batters faced in the seventh inning both scored.
Jake Thompson was part of the haul from Texas last July for Cole Hamels, and the 22-year-old right-hander put up a 2.50 ERA in 21 starts for Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season before getting his first major league call. Thompson in two starts with the Phillies has allowed nine runs in 9⅓ innings, with five walks and seven strikeouts.
Thursday, 4:05 p.m. (SportsNet LA)
Bud Norris is scheduled to be activated from the disabled list to start the series finale, but a lot of Dodgers pitchers have been scheduled to do a lot of things this season. Norris pitched into the sixth inning last Saturday in his lone minor league rehab start for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga.
Jerad Eickhoff also came to the Phillies in the Hamels trade, and the 25-year-old leads the team with 143⅔ innings this season. With 120 strikeouts, Eickhoff is also one off the club strikeout lead; Philadelphia has four starters bunched together 121, 120, 120 and 119 strikeouts in 2016. When Eickhoff lasts at least six innings in a start this season, the Phillies are 9-6, and when he doesn’t they are 2-7.