Dodgers Vs. Mets Game Preview: Mookie Betts Back At 2nd Base In Chance For Sweep

Following a two-win day in the doubleheader on Tuesday, the Los Angeles Dodgers aim for a series sweep over the New York Mets at Citi Field.

The Dodgers currently have a 5.5 game lead in the National League West over the San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres. Splitting their last 10 games, the pitching staff has carried a big load for the club while the offense works through some cold streaks.

James Paxton takes the mound against the Mets, entering play with a 5-0 record, 3.49 ERA, 1.43 WHIP and just 28 strikeouts over 49 innings pitched.

The 35-year-old is coming off a tough start against the Cincinnati Reds, when he allowed five earned runs on five hits over 4.2 innings. However, the results vary because of the volatility of Great American Ballpark and how tough it is to limit runs.

At times, Paxton has been a very efficient option for the Dodgers and is navigating his way through starts without overwhelmingly positive metrics. The Dodgers have increased the usage on his four-seam fastball and knuckle curve, making him a two-pitch pitcher.

The tricky part of that arsenal is opposing batters being able to key-in during certain spots, but to this point, he’s managed.

The Mets reinstated left-hander Dave Peterson ahead of Wednesday’s game, where he’ll make his regular season debut. He’s spent the first two months on the injured list as he completes his rehab from offseason surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left hip.

In his rehab outings in the minors, Peterson posted a 1.14 ERA with 35 strikeouts over 23.2 innings (six appearances).

Peterson draws a difficult matchup in his debut start, as the Dodgers’ offense ranks fourth in Major League Baseball and first in the NL this month against left-handers with a 135 wRC+. Alongside a 19.2% strikeout rate against southpaws in May, they’ve done a fine job of making the most of each at-bat.

Shohei Ohtani is back in the lineup after sitting in the second game of the doubleheader while he nurses a hamstring contusion. Catcher Will Smith enters play as the fourth ranked hitter in baseball with a 250 wRC+ against lefties, with outfielder Teoscar Hernández at 29th with a 167 wRC+.

Mookie Betts draws the start at second base with Miguel Rojas at shortstop.

Dodgers lineup

2B: Mookie Betts
DH: Shohei Ohtani
1B: Freddie Freeman
C: Will Smith
RF: Teoscar Hernández
CF: Andy Pages
3B: Kiké Hernández
SS: Miguel Rojas
LF: Miguel Vargas

Mets lineup

SS: Francisco Lindor
1B: Pete Alonso
DH: J.D. Martinez
3B: Mark Vientos
RF: Starling Marte
LF: Tyrone Taylor
2B: Jeff McNeil
CF: Harrison Bader
C: Tomas Nido

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