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Dodgers vs. Padres NLDS Game 3 preview

With the series tied at one, the Dodgers send Tony Gonsolin to the mound against Blake Snell.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Los Angeles Dodgers Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers are betting on Tony Gonsolin in game three of the NLDS. He’ll take the mound against the San Diego Padres tonight after going two innings in his first start back from a forearm strain on October 3.

Despite his recent health struggles, Gonsolin went 16-1 in the regular season with a 2.14 ERA. He’s been building up his pitch count, and while the Dodgers don’t expect the righty to go far into tonight’s game, manager Dave Roberts is confident enough that he’ll get what he needs.

“We extended him in the live sim games that we had this past week,” Roberts said to reporters. “We feel good about the length and how he is throwing the baseball.”

And if Gonsolin needs an early exit, Roberts is prepared for that, too: “Obviously less is more, but if we have to use six arms tomorrow, we’ll do that,” he told Los Angeles Times writer Jack Harris yesterday.

Blake Snell will pitch for the Padres. He has a 2.54 ERA in 11 career starts against the Dodgers, but that doesn’t mean he’s guaranteed to have a good time. Snell went only 3 13 innings against the Mets in his most recent start, so it remains to be seen whether he’s recovered from that one.

When it comes to offense, Jurickson Profar and Manny Machado are both heating up for San Diego. Profar has reached in nine of 22 plate appearances, while Machado leads the team with four extra-base postseason hits. Trea Turner and Freddie Freeman are the bats to watch for the Dodgers, as the pair seem to be hitting homers with ease.

This could be anyone’s game — an unexpected reality for many Dodger fans, but there we have it.

Game info

Teams: Dodgers at Padres

Series: Tied, 1-1

Pitchers: Tony Gonsolin vs. Blake Snell

Location: Petco Park

Time: 5:37 p.m.