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Dodgers thriving in interleague play for a change

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Chicago White Sox Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers conclude their homestand with a pair of games against the Chicago White Sox, part of a quick five-game stretch of interleague games to finish off the American League portion of the club’s schedule this season. To date, this has been the best interleague season for the Dodgers since the practice began in 1997.

After these two games against the Sox and an off day for travel, the Dodgers open a seven-game road trip with three games in Detroit against the Tigers.

So far, the Dodgers are 12-3 against American League teams in 2017, the most interleague wins in the majors. The 12 interleague wins match a Dodgers record, set also in 2002 (12-6) and 2013 (12-8).

The Dodgers have won their last nine games against American League teams -- dating back to June 29 in Anaheim — their longest streak since interleague play began in 1997. The previous longest win streak was eight consecutive victories in 2003.

Historically the Dodgers haven’t fared all that well on the road in interleague play — their record is 72-105 (.407), compared to 98-74 (.570) at home — but haven’t had a losing overall record against the AL since 2012. From 2013-16, the Dodgers were 43-37, but this year has been a whole new level.

Best Dodgers interleague records

Year W-L Pct Home Road
Year W-L Pct Home Road
2017 12-3 0.800 7-1 5-2
2002 12-6 0.667 7-2 5-4
1998 8-5 0.615 3-2 5-3
2003 11-7 0.611 5-4 6-3
2013 12-8 0.600 7-3 5-5
1997 9-7 0.563 6-2 3-5
2004 10-8 0.556 6-3 4-5
2014 11-9 0.550 4-6 7-3
Source: Baseball-Reference

At home, the Dodgers are 7-1 against American League teams, with sweeps against the Royals and Twins and a two-game split against the Angels. At Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers have outscored the AL 36-22 this season.

The club record for home interleague wins is eight, set in 2015.

On the road, the Dodgers are 5-2 in interleague play, winning two of three in Cleveland, sweeping two in Chicago, and splitting two in Anaheim. They have outscored AL opponents on the road 36-27.

The Dodgers record for road interleague wins is seven, set in 2014.

The Dodgers’ batting leaders in interleague play this season:

  • Yasiel Puig: 20-for-53 (.377/.377/.679), 4 home runs, 2 doubles
  • Cody Bellinger: 13-for-50 (.260/.413/.620), 5 home runs, 12 RBI, 3 doubles, 13 walks
  • Kiké Hernandez: 7-for-25 (.280/.333/.680), 3 home runs, double
  • Chris Taylor: 21-for-57 (.368/.400/.596), 7 doubles, 2 home runs, 10 RBI
  • Joc Pederson: 10-for-46 (.217/.280/.609), 5 home runs, 3 doubles, 12 RBI

Dodgers starting pitchers have also been especially effective in interleague play this season, posting a 2.33 ERA in 88⅔ innings, and have allowed two or fewer runs in 12 of the 15 games.