Preview: Cody Bellinger Returns To Lineup, Dodgers Begin 9-Game Homestand By Facing Braves In Rematch Of 2018 NLDS
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off a 3-3 showing against the San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres on their road trip up and down the California coast, the Los Angeles Dodgers return home to face the Atlanta Braves in the opener of a nine-game homestand.

The Dodgers pace all of baseball with 22 wins this season and continue to hold a slim one-game lead over the second-place Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League West. Meanwhile, the Braves enter play with a three-game winning streak and trail the first-place Philadelphia Phillies by 1.5 games in the NL East.

Monday marks the first meeting between the two clubs since the 2018 NL Division Series. The Dodgers defeated the Braves, 3-1, and went on to advance to their third consecutive NL Championship Series.

Walker Buehler makes his seventh start of the season and looks to improve on his most recent outing against the Giants. In 5.1 innings of work, he allowed three runs on six hits and recorded six strikeouts. He earned his third win of the year and enters play with a perfect 3-0 record.

Buehler faced the Braves in Game 3 of the 2018 NLDS and did not fare well, surrendering five runs in five innings of work. Four of those runs came off the bat of Ronald Acuña Jr., whose two-out grand slam in the second inning ultimately propelled Atlanta to their only win of the series.

The Braves counter with Kevin Gausman, who additionally makes his seventh start of the season. His last outing against the Miami Marlins on May 3 was cut short, as he lasted just 1.2 innings pitched after yielding one hit and one run.

The right-hander is 1-2 with a 4.83 ERA, 4.19 FIP and 1.07 WHIP in 31.2 innings pitched this season. His is striking out a career-best 9.7 batters per nine but has also struggled with the home run ball thus far, yielding five in the early going.

Gausman made just one appearance against the Dodgers in the 2018 NLDS, logging two innings out of the bullpen in Game 3. He allowed a two-run home run to Chris Taylor in the fifth inning, but Atlanta still managed to hang on to a 6-5 victory.

The Dodgers receive a boost to their lineup as Cody Bellinger returns after being limited to pinch-hitting the past two games because of a dislocated right shoulder.

Dodgers lineup:

LF: Joc Pederson
RF: Cody Bellinger
3B: Justin Turner
SS: Corey Seager
1B: Max Muncy
2B: Chris Taylor
CF: Alex Verdugo
C: Austin Barnes
P: Walker Buehler

Braves lineup:

2B: Ozzie Albies
3B: Josh Donaldson
1B: Freddie Freeman
LF: Ronald Acuña Jr.
RF: Nick Markakis
SS: Dansby Swanson
C: Brian McCann
CF: Ender Inciarte
P: Kevin Gausman