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Maybe off day can spark early start for Dodgers offense

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Chicago Cubs Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers resume action after the rare no-travel off day on Tuesday, continuing their series against the Cubs on Wednesday night at Wrigley Field.

In 2016 the Dodgers were 7-10 in their first game after an off day, though only three of those off days were without travel. They were 2-3 in those games immediately after, including a rainout in Denver last Aug. 30 which resulted in a doubleheader on Aug. 31.

2016 Dodgers no-travel off days

Off day Scenario Next game result
Off day Scenario Next game result
May 5, 2016 Travel from Tampa to Toronto May 4 Blue Jays 5, Dodgers 2
July 18, 2016 Travel from LA to DC July 17 Dodgers 8, Nationals 4
July 28, 2016 Off day during homestand Dodgers 9, D-backs 7
August 11, 2016 Off day during homestand Pirates 5, Dodgers 1
August 30, 2016 Rainout in Colorado Rockies 7, Dodgers 0

There is no real conclusion to draw here, other than an off day with no travel is rare, and to be cherished.

The Dodgers will try to get back on track on Wednesday night, and perhaps the key is striking first.

The club has scored in the first inning of two games, and won both. They have allowed first-inning runs four times, and lost three of those games.

When the Dodgers score before their opponent, they are 3-0, and when they don’t they are 1-4. The Cubs scored first on Monday, with a run in the third inning.

There has only been one lead change in eight Dodgers games this season, and that came opening day. There have been ties in three of the other seven games.

Pitching matchup

Brandon McCarthy gets the start for the Dodgers on Wednesday, his second start of the year. He allowed two runs in six innings in a win last Thursday against the Padres, with four strikeouts and one walk.

John Lackey is also making his second start of the season. The veteran Cubs right-hander struck out seven Cardinals in six innings in a win last Thursday, allowing four runs (three earned) and two walks.

Lackey is making the 418th start of his career on Wednesday, third among active pitchers, behind only Bartolo Colon (502 starts) and CC Sabathia (484).


  • Dodgers starters have a ground ball rate of 42.1% but have allowed nine home runs to their 174 batters faced.
  • Dodgers relievers have a 36.8% ground ball rate and have allowed no home runs to their 105 batters faced.
  • Seventh-place hitters are 0-for-26 against Dodgers pitchers this season, with two walks and eight strikeouts.

Game info

Time: 5:05 p.m. PT

TV: SportsNet LA, KTLA, MLB Network