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Quality paying off for the Dodgers

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Dodgers lead majors with 57 quality starts

MLB: Miami Marlins at Los Angeles Dodgers Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 Dodgers are doing something they have not done for several seasons. Their starting pitchers are pitching deeper into games and giving a little more breathing room to their bullpen.

This season, the Dodgers have 57 quality starts in 101 games. A quality start is one where the starter pitches six innings or more and gives up three or less earned runs. The Dodgers are 46-11 in those starts.

Hyun-Jin Ryu leads the team and is tied for the major league lead with 16 quality starts. Clayton Kershaw threw his 14th quality start last night and Walker Buehler enters today with 11 quality starts.

The Dodgers have been trending upwards since the 2016 season in terms of quality starts.

  • The 2016 Dodgers had 60 quality starts after having 95 quality starts in 2015
  • The 2017 Dodgers had 68 quality starts and last season, the team had 79 quality starts.

Right now, the Dodgers are on pace to have 91 quality starts this season.

Regular faces a hallmark of the 2019 season so far

As the Dodgers enter play today, they are on track to have seven position players qualify for the batting title and four pitchers qualify for the ERA title.

Per MLB rules, a player must have 502 plate appearances (3.1 per 162 games) to qualify for any rate stat title and a pitcher must have completed 162 innings (1 per game) to qualify for the ERA title.

The Dodgers have seven position players who could qualify for the batting title this season, the most since having seven qualified players finish the 2009 season. This year’s players are Cody Bellinger, Kiké Hernández, Max Muncy, Joc Pederson, Corey Seager, Justin Turner and Alex Verdugo.

Over the past three seasons, the Dodgers have had two pitchers who have thrown 162 or more innings in a season. In 2016, it was Kenta Maeda and in 2017, Clayton Kershaw qualified for the ERA title. Last season, no Dodger pitcher reached 162 innings.

This season, Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw, Kenta Maeda and Hyun-Jin Ryu are all currently qualified for the ERA title. The Dodgers are one of three teams, the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds are the other two, with four pitchers who have thrown 100 or more innings.

Jordan Yamamoto is 11th rookie starting pitcher against Dodgers this season

It isn’t every series where a rookie lines up to pitch against the Dodgers but this series against the Marlins have two rookies on the mound against the Dodgers. Zac Gallen started on Friday and pitched well, getting into the sixth inning and taking a tough loss.

Today, Jordan Yamamoto takes the mound and he is 4-0 with 34 strikeouts and 17 walks in 34 innings pitched.

The Dodgers have won six of the ten games against a rookie making his first start against the Dodgers. Three of these pitchers, Taylor Clarke, Peter Lambert and Chris Paddack, have made more than one start against the Dodgers this season.

2019 Rookie starting pitchers first start against Dodgers

Player▲ Date Team Result Decision IP H R ER BB SO
Player▲ Date Team Result Decision IP H R ER BB SO
Nick Margevicius 5/5/2019 SDP W 8-5 ND 5.2 7 3 3 3 0
Chris Paddack 5/14/2019 SDP L 3-6 Loss 4.2 5 6 3 1 3
Taylor Clarke 6/4/2019 ARI L 0-9 Loss 5 4 3 2 2 4
Jon Duplantier 6/5/2019 ARI W 3-2 ND 5 3 2 2 1 7
Griffin Canning 6/10/2019 LAA W 5-3 ND 6 5 3 3 0 5
Tyler Beede 6/17/2019 SFG W 3-2 Win 6 3 1 1 5 7
Shaun Anderson 6/18/2019 SFG L 0-9 Loss 5.2 7 3 3 3 2
Peter Lambert 6/22/2019 COL L 4-5 Loss 5 7 3 3 1 1
Merrill Kelly 7/3/2019 ARI L 4-5 Loss 6 6 3 3 0 2
Zac Gallen 7/19/2019 MIA L 1-2 Loss 5.1 3 2 1 4 5