Preview: Joc Pederson Bats Leadoff, Dodgers Can Complete Season Sweep Of Reds

Preview: Joc Pederson Bats Leadoff, Dodgers Can Complete Season Sweep Of Reds

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers are guaranteed to finish with a winning record on their six-game road trip, but they can punctuate it with a sweep of the Cincinnati Reds. By doing so, Los Angeles also will have swept the season series (six games) from Cincinnati.

The Dodgers enter play one game back of the National League West-leading Colorado Rockies who are on a four-game winning streak. The Arizona Diamondbacks have the same record as the Dodgers (43-26) and are in the midst of a six-game winning streak.

Los Angeles sends out a lineup for the Father’s Day matchup that differs from what’s regularly been seen from manager Dave Roberts.

Joc Pederson, in his fifth game back from the concussion disabled list, bats leadoff for the eighth time this season. Pederson has slugged a home run in each of the past two games.

Yasiel Puig, who hit a pair of home runs in Saturday’s blowout victory, is hitting fifth. He’s spent much of the season in the eight-hole.

As for matters on the mound, Kenta Maeda makes a spot start that’s providing the rotation with an additional day of rest prior to their next turn. Manager Dave Roberts saw it beneficial to do so with his club going through a stretch of 20 games in 20 days.

Maeda’s last time pitching was out of the bullpen on June 9 against the same Reds. His first relief appearance amounted to a four-inning save in which Maeda collected six strikeouts and only allowed one run on three hits (a solo home run in the ninth).

Overall this season, the 29-year-old is 4-3 with a 4.95 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 11 games (10 starts). Maeda said he intends to pitch aggressively and attack the strike zone, which was a mentality that suited him well during the relief appearance.

The Reds counter with Bronson Arroyo, who enters 3-5 with a 7.01 ERA and 1.56 WHIP in 13 starts. Arroyo, who was briefly with the Dodgers, is coming off an outing in which he allowed nine runs on 13 hits to the San Diego Padres in 4.2 innings.

The veteran right-hander has allowed at least four runs in seven of his starts. Andre Ethier and Adrian Gonzalez have noteworthy experience against Arroyo, but both players remain on the disabled list.

After them is Chase Utley, who is a lifetime 7-for-23 off Arroyo, with two home runs and four RBI. Though, Utley is not in the lineup. Puig is 4-for-4 with one walk.

Justin Turner returns after a game off. He’s riding a 12-game hitting streak, batting .465/.540/.605 with three doubles, one home run and four RBI during that span.

Billy Hamilton, Devin Mesoraco and Jose Peraza each tripled on Saturday, though none of them scored. Only Hamilton remains in the Reds lineup, as Mesoraco gives way to Tucker Barnhart, and Scooter Gennett starts at second base.

The Dodgers recalled Brock Stewart and optioned Josh Ravin to Triple-A Oklahoma City prior to the series finale. Stewart will provide long relief in the event Maeda fails to pitch deep into his start.

Dodgers lineup:

CF: Joc Pederson
SS: Corey Seager
3B: Justin Turner
1B: Cody Bellinger
RF: Yasiel Puig
2B: Logan Forsythe
C: Austin Barnes
LF: Kiké Hernandez
P: Kenta Maeda

Reds lineup:

CF: Billy Hamilton
2B: Scooter Gennett
1B: Joey Votto
LF: Adam Duvall
RF: Scott Schebler
3B: Eugenio Suarez
SS: Arismendy Alcantara
C: Tuker Barnhart
P: Bronson Arroyo