The two most talented teams in the NL West will face off for the first time this weekend when the Los Angeles Dodgers (11-2) visit the San Diego Padres (9-5). The Dodgers won last year’s World Series, while the Padres have built their franchise to win a title in the near future. Some of the game’s most talented players will battle it out over the next three days in San Diego.
Today’s game features a pair of veteran ace pitchers in Clayton Kershaw and Yu Darvish. This will be the first time the former teammates and offseason throwing partners will face each other as NL West division rivals. This should be a fun matchup.
Since last night’s game was completed after press time, let’s recap the previous series. The Dodgers finished up their sweep of Colorado Thursday night with a 7-5 win. Los Angeles got three-run bombs from Justin Turner and Max Muncy to get the win. Dave Roberts elected to rest several starters, including Corey Seager and Mookie Betts, in anticipation of this weekend’s series. That move paid off.
San Diego finished up their recent road trip 5-2 with an 8-3 win Thursday afternoon over the Pirates. Manny Machado’s first-inning home run capped a four-run inning to put the Friars in control. The win gave the Padres a series split as they took the first and last games, but lost the middle two.
One big name that will be missing is Cody Bellinger, who is currently working back from a calf injury. He is expected to miss the series.
Kershaw Gets the Nod in Game TwoClayton Kershaw gets the start in game two of this series against his former throwing partner and neighbor turned NL West rival Yu Darvish. Kershaw has been excellent to start the season, posting a 2.89 ERA, 1.58 FIP, and a 1.071 WHIP through his first three starts. In 18.2 innings, Kershaw has allowed six earned runs and 19 hits while striking out 16 and walking just one batter. In his last start against Washington, Kershaw pitched six scoreless innings, allowing just five hits while striking out six.
The Dodger bullpen is 2-1 this season with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.396 WHIP in 33.2 innings of work. They have allowed 14 earned runs on 30 hits, walking 17 and striking out 35.
The Max factor. pic.twitter.com/m9K3knWuVx— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) April 16, 2021
Over the past seven games, the Dodgers have slashed .243/.329/.493 with nine homers, 23 RBI, 19 walks, and 36 strikeouts. Against righties, the Dodgers have hit a torrid .298/.390/.353 with 15 home runs and 54 RBI. On the road, the Dodgers have slashed .310/.409/.492 with seven home runs and 42 RBI (four of the seven road games were played at Coors Field).
Individually, Justin Turner has been red hot over the past seven games, posting a .467/.500/1.000 slash line with two homers and four RBI. Against righties, Corey Seager has slashed .419/.538/.710 with one home run and eight RBI. Seager is also batting .423/.531/538 with seven RBI on the road this season.
Darvish To Start Opposite of KershawYu Darvish will face his former teammate and offseason throwing partner Clayton Kershaw for the first time as NL West division rivals. Darvish has compiled a 1-0 record this season, posting a 3.06 ERA, 3.70 FIP, and a 0.926 WHIP in 17.2 innings. He has allowed six earned runs and 14 hits while walking three and striking out 19. Darvish has allowed three home runs in his three starts. In his last game, Darvish got the win against the Pirates, limiting the Bucs to one run on three hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out six.
The Padres bullpen has been busy this season, posting a 5-3 record with a 2.08 ERA and a 1.012 WHIP. The relief corps has worked 56.1 innings, allowing 13 earned runs and 43 hits while walking 14 and striking out 67.
As a team, the Friars have slashed .247/.353/.394 with seven home runs, 20 RBI, 29 walks, and 33 strikeouts over the past seven days. Against lefties, the Padres have hit .282/.375/.447 with four homers and 14 RBI. At home, San Diego has slashed .252/.394/.398 with seven home runs and 27 RBI.
Individually, Jake Cronenworth comes into this series slashing .393/.438/.500 over his past seven games. Cronenworth has also hit lefties well, posting a .429/.467/.571 slash line. At Petco Park, Eric Hosmer is batting .391/.440/.739 with two homers and seven RBI.
- San Diego: Padres are 4-1 in their last 5 home games vs. a left-handed starter.
- San Diego: Padres are 5-2 in their last 7 overall.