Dodgers Vs. Padres Game Preview: Max Muncy Returns To Lineup

Max Muncy returns to the Los Angeles Dodgers lineup as they look to win an eighth consecutive series against the San Diego Padres since being swept by them from June 21-23, 2021.

Muncy missed the past two games after receiving a cortisone injection to treat left knee discomfort he’s dealt with for multiple weeks. Muncy believes the pain may have stemmed from incorporating the move to step back while a pitch is being delivered.

The unique adjustment led to Muncy turning his season around and after going through a slump, he’s on the upswing once again. Muncy enters play Sunday on a five-game hitting streak and has homered in two straight.

Muncy and the Dodgers look to provide run support for Andrew Heaney, who in turn is trying to correct recent struggles with allowing home runs. Heaney is coming off allowing a career-high-tying four homers, and he’s given up at least one in four consecutive starts.

Heaney enters 2-2 with a 2.94 ERA and 1.08 WHIP in 11 starts this season. One of those outings came against the Padres on Aug. 6, when the left-hander allowed three runs (all earned) over 4.2 innings.

Heaney is opposed by Joe Musgrove, who similarly is looking to bounce back from a rough start. Musgrove was chased in the fifth inning and allowed five runs (four earned) in a no-decision against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits over seven innings when he last faced the Dodgers at the end of June.

A win on Sunday would make the Dodgers the first team in baseball to clinch a 2022 MLB postseason berth. The Cincinnati Reds defeating the Milwaukee Brewers would also punch the Dodgers’ ticket. The earliest they can clinch the National League West remains Tuesday, regardless of the outcome in the series finale at Petco Park.

Dodgers lineup

RF: Mookie Betts
SS: Trea Turner
1B: Freddie Freeman
C: Will Smith
DH: Max Muncy
3B: Justin Turner
LF: Joey Gallo
2B: Chris Taylor
CF: Cody Bellinger

Padres lineup

SS: Ha-Seong Kim
RF: Juan Soto
3B: Manny Machado
DH: Josh Bell
1B: Wil Myers
2B: Jake Cronenworth
LF: Jurickson Profar
C: Austin Nola
CF: José Azocar

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