The Los Angeles Dodgers begin a seven-game road trip Tuesday in what’s Chase Utley’s first time playing at Citizens Bank Park since he was traded by the Philadelphia Phillies last August.
It’s the second series between the Dodgers and Phillies in the past week, with Los Angeles taking two of three at Dodger Stadium. Utley went 3-for-13 during the three-game set, and said he was looking forward to his first game back in Philadelphia.
Tuesday’s series opener is a rematch of Kenta Maeda and Vince Velasquez. Maeda tossed five innings and allowed three runs on six hits the last time he faced the Phillies.
Maeda this season is 11-7 with a 3.31 ERA and 1.09 WHIP over in 23 starts of what’s been a successful rookie season. He leads the team with 130.2 innings pitched.
Velasquez is the midst of a solid first year with the Phillies after being acquired in the offseason trade that sent Ken Giles to the Houston Astros. The right-hander enters 8-4 with a 3.94 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP and 120 strikeouts in 107.1 innings of work.
Velasquez put together a few solid outings before giving up nine runs to the Dodgers on Aug. 9. He allowed doubles to Adrian Gonzalez, Howie Kendrick and Maeda, and home runs to Yasmani Grandal, Kendrick and Justin Turner.
In the two starts prior to that loss, Velasquez allowed four runs in 11 innings while striking out 11. He’ll face a Dodgers lineup that sees the return of Turner after he missed the past two games with a right hand contusion.
Turner has hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games. Los Angeles enters play one-half game back of the San Francisco Giants for first place in the National League West.
The Dodgers took two of three games at Citizens Bank Park last season, and are 10-3 there dating back to the start of the 2012 season (20-11 overall).
2B: Chase Utley
SS: Corey Seager
3B: Justin Turner
RF: Josh Reddick
1B: Adrian Gonzalez
C: Yasmani Grandal
CF: Joc Pederson
LF: Howie Kendrick
P: Kenta Maeda
2B: Cesar Hernandez
CF: Odubel Herrera
LF: Aaron Altherr
3B: Maikel Franco
1B: Ryan Howard
C: Cameron Rupp
SS: Freddy Galvis
RF: Peter Bourjos
P: Vine Velasquez