Nolan Arenado is once again penciled into the No. 2 spot in the Rockies lineup and will look to tack on to his 14-game hitting streak on Friday against the Dodgers.
Walt Weiss inserted Arenado behind leadoff hitter Charlie Blackmon at the beginning of the Giants series at Coors Field, and the 23-year-old third baseman responded by going 4-for-15 in three games. That doesn't match the level of production that Michael Cuddyer was putting up from the No. 2 hole, but Arenado profiles well for that spot in the order because of his propensity to make contact. It would be nice if he reached base at a better clip, sure, but until Colorado gets its desired lineup healthy, Arenado is about as good as the Rox can do in that place in the lineup.
If Arenado can continue his hitting streak tonight, it will set the Rockies up well, as Carlos Gonzalez is back in the lineup and presumably feeling better after tweaking his knee on Sunday. CarGo is in a pretty woeful stretch at the plate, and Dodger Stadium isn't exactly the best place for hitters to get right. But, having him in the lineup will, if nothing else, help Troy Tulowitzki and Justin Morneau -- two players who have been on an absolute tear as of late.
Jordan Lyles is on the mound for the Rockies. He's been one of the most surprising pitchers in all of baseball at this point, turning in a 3.04 ERA through four starts. The key for him is limiting walks and keeping the ball on the ground; Lyles currently boasts a career-best walk rate of 2.3 per nine innings and has a 1.29 GB/FB ratio.
Josh Beckett, who appears healthy for the first time in quite a while, will start for the Dodgers. Beckett has whiffed 16 batters and allowed only eight hits through 14 innings spanning three starts but has been a bit susceptible to walking batters, surrendering eight free passes thus far.