When the Dodgers left Texas with their second consecutive sweep, it was only the second time this season they reeled off five wins in a row. Long winning streaks are a staple on any good team and it’s something the Dodgers have yet to do this year.
Comparing this version against last year’s team is futile but they won six or more consecutive games in six different streaks in 2017. The last Dodger team to go all season without a six game winning streak was in 2007, finishing 82-80 under Grady Little.
The most important series at this moment starts Thursday night against the Diamondbacks. The Dodgers could not only make it the 11th straight year with a six-game winning streak, it could give them the needed momentum to finally break through against Arizona.
Eight of the 12 games between these two clubs have gone Arizona’s way in 2018 and the Dodgers have dropped 19 of the last 31 going back to last year. The Diamondbacks were one of only two teams the Dodgers didn’t have at least a .500 record against last season, along with Colorado.
The Dodger offense will try to stay hot against Robbie Ray on Thursday. The lefty is a career 6-3 with a 2.69 ERA in 13 career starts against Los Angeles, including 3-0 in five starts last season. Since missing most of May and June, the Dbacks are 3-8 in the lefty’s 11 starts as Ray has given up 30 runs in 58 innings, including 10 home runs.
Ray presents a challenge for Justin Turner who is just 5-for-26 with nine strikeouts in 32 plate appearances against him. Turner has reached base by hit or walk in 23 of his last 24 games, hitting .398/.481/.710 and knocking in 20 runs over that time.
The middle portion of the Dodger lineup has had good success against Ray. Matt Kemp is 6-for-14 with two homers, Chris Taylor is 8-for-18 with a pair of doubles and Kiké Hernandez has three homers, a double, a triple and five walks in 32 plate appearances.
Rich Hill will be looking to buck the personal trend against Arizona. The left-hander had no success in two early starts at Dodger Stadium as the Snakes scored 12 runs in nine combined innings against him.
The Dodgers activated Josh Fields off the 60-day DL Thursday, optioning Yimi Garcia to Class-A Rancho and designating infielder Rob Segedin for assignment.
Fields missed the last 53 games with with right shoulder inflammation. The right-hander owns a 2.36 ERA out of the bullpen this season in 37 games. Fields appeared in the seventh inning or later in 32 of his 37 games and could be a factor in the back end if healthy.