Know Your Foe #42: The Perfect Remedy for the Dodgers Following a Series Loss? A Trip to Colorado!

"I don't care how good you think Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun are - this guy should be the MVP."

Los Angeles Dodgers (56-67 / 4th in the NL West / 12.5 GB)

2011 Record vs. Colorado: 6-6 (65 runs scored, 56 runs allowed)

Last Series vs. Rockies: July 25-27 (W 2-1 at Dodger Stadium)

It was an uneventful three days the last time these two teams met up, as the Dodgers won two of three despite doing their best to squander the series opener. The Dodgers got to Juan Nicasio and Esmil Rogers, tagging them for eight runs. Rafael Furcal, Aaron Miles, Andre Ethier, and Jamey Carroll each had two hits, while Ethier and Matt Kemp drew two walks apiece. The Rockies only had five hits, but they put together a furious ninth inning rally against Hong-Chih Kuo (three runs on two walks and a hit) and Mike MacDougal (one run on two walks and a hit). However, Javy Guerra came in and got Troy Tulowitzki to pop out and Seth Smith to ground out - both with the bases loaded - to end the game.

The second game featured Clayton Kershaw, who tosses 6.2 innings of two-run ball (although he allowed eight hits), as the Dodgers won 3-2 despite being outhit 8-4. A two-run double by Matt Kemp (after Ty Wigginton dropped a flyball to lead off the inning) was the key play in the game, as he would also come around to score on a sacrifice fly to second base (no joke). Dexter Fowler had three knocks for the Rockies.

Colorado avoided the sweep in the finale behind seven scoreless innings from Aaron Cook. Tulowitzki led the way with three hits and two RBI's for the Rox, while Fowler and Smith chipped in two hits apiece. Rod Barajas homered off of Huston Street in the ninth, but it was too little, too late for the Dodgers as they lost 3-1.

Latest Series Results: W 3-0 vs. Houston; L 1-3 at Milwaukee

Not much has changed since the last time the Rockies played the Dodgers; aside from Andre Ethier, Jamey Carroll, and this guy...


Matt Kemp

#27 / Center Field / Los Angeles Dodgers

6-3

215

R

R

Sep 23, 1984


AVG OBP SLG
2011 - Matt Kemp .319 .391 .571


...they still bear a strong resemblance to hot garbage at the plate. It is, however, worth noting that Juan Rivera has proved to be a good mid-season pickup (138 wRC+ in 100 plate appearances) for the Dodgers, and Trent Oeltjen has provided some good bench depth. In addition, you and I both know that James Loney (75 wRC+) turns into Babe Ruth against the Rockies, particularly at Coors Field. In short, as bad as this offense is, don't be surprised if they go to town on three average to below-average Colorado starters in this series. We've seen it happen too many times before against better Rockies hurlers.

Fortunately, we won't see Clayton Kershaw (15-5, 2.60 ERA, 2.80 xFIP) in this series. Kershaw, owner of a 5.3 WAR, has been on some kind of roll this season, and would definitely be way up the charts in terms of Cy Young consideration if his team wasn't so terrible. As it stands, he's probably up there anyway. We will, however, see Hiroki Kuroda (0-5, 5.81 vs. Colorado in his career), who has been a little bit lucky despite his 2.88 ERA on the season (3.57 xFIP), although his W-L record doesn't show it due to a severe lack of run support. Chad Billingsley (3.88) and Ted Lilly (3.94) sport much better xFIP numbers than ERA's, but the Rockies have victimized Billingsley to the tune of 12 runs and 30 (THIRTY) hits in 14.2 innings across three games in 2011. On the other hand, Lilly has been great in two starts against the Rox this season (2.25 ERA; two walks and 11 K's in 12 innings).

The Dodgers don't have a whole lot of great options out of the bullpen, as they have been bitten by the injury bug. Jonathan Broxton has not pitched since May 3rd, and even before that he was going through a steady decline. Meanwhile Kenley Jansen, who has struck out 61 batters in 37 innings, hasn't pitched since that last Rockies-Dodgers series due to an irregular heartbeat. That pretty much just leaves Javy Guerra, who has done a nice job stepping into the closer role, with 10 saves, a 1.57 ERA ,and 23 strikeouts in 28.2 innings. Aside from that, striking out batters and limiting walks has not been the Dodger bullpen's greatest strength.

The usual stuff after the jump...

Friday through Sunday: 3-game series at Coors Field

Expected Pitching Matchups
Friday, August 19, 2011 @ 6:40 PM MT

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Hiroki Kuroda 8-14 24 24 0 0 0 0 153.1 146 56 49 14 40 121 2.88 1.21


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Jason Hammel 7-11 24 24 0 0 0 0 143.0 154 88 79 17 60 76 4.97 1.50


Saturday, August 20, 2011 @ 6:10 PM MT

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Ted Lilly 7-13 26 25 0 0 0 0 144.2 143 75 73 26 32 112 4.54 1.21


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Esmil Rogers 6-2 13 7 0 0 0 0 45.0 55 30 30 5 27 37 6.00 1.82


Sunday, August 21, 2011 @ 1:10 PM MT

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Chad Billingsley 10-9 25 25 1 0 0 0 151.2 150 73 68 9 63 125 4.04 1.40


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Kevin Millwood 0-1 2 2 0 0 0 0 13.0 13 7 7 5 2 9 4.85 1.15

 

Expected Lineup

Name Position AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ HR RBI
Aaron Miles 2B .288 .310 .353 .293 83 1 33
Casey Blake 3B .250 .342 .362 .312 97 4 23
Andre Ethier RF .295 .369 .426 .347 121 10 51
Matt Kemp CF .319 .391 .571 .417 168 28 89
Juan Rivera LF .267 .323 .398 .315 101 8 43
James Loney 1B .255 .306 .329 .281 75 5 36
Rod Barajas C .222 .276 .400 .292 83 11 29
Jamey Carroll SS .293 .362 .358 .328 107 0 11

 

Bench

Name Position AVG OBP SLG wOBA wRC+ HR RBI
Dioner Navarro C .199 .282 .337 .269 67 5 17
Justin Sellers IF .190 .261 .333 .278 73 1 3
Tony Gwynn OF .260 .313 .349 .307 93 1 16
Trent Oeltjen OF .214 .364 .357 .329 108 1 4
Eugenio Velez Util .000 .087 .000 .071 -68 0 0

Closer

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Javy Guerra 2-0 30 0 0 0 10 0 29.2 26 6 6 0 8 24 1.82 1.15

 

Injuries


Los Angeles Dodgers Injuries

Questionable

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Casey Blake shoulder 08/19/2011

15-Day

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Jonathan Broxton elbow 05/04/2011
Kenley Jansen other-excused 07/27/2011
Rubby De La Rosa elbow 08/01/2011
Dee Gordon shoulder 08/10/2011

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