The Los Angeles Dodgers opened a key series against the Arizona Diamondbacks with a win, and on Wednesday can put further distance between themselves and the second-place team in the National League West.
Alex Wood, one of the Dodgers’ two All-Star snubs, takes the mound with an opportunity to reach double-digit wins and remain undefeated. The 26-year-old has been one of the best starters in baseball, going 9-0 with a 1.83 ERA, 2.12 FIP and 0.91 WHIP in 14 games (12 starts). He has struck out 87 batters while walking 20 in 73.2 innings.
Wood had one of his worst outings of the season on April 25 against the Diamondbacks, surrendering seven hits and four runs in 4.2 innings. He has had some success against them in his career though, going 3-3 with a 3.60 ERA in 10 games (six starts).
The left-hander has been consistent both at home and on the road this season, yielding the same 1.83 ERA for both splits.
Like the Dodgers with Wood, the Diamondbacks counter with a pitcher who has been a pleasant surprise in Zack Godley. The right-hander began the season in Triple-A, but has made 10 starts since being called up.
Godley is 3-2 with a 2.67 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, 59 strikeouts and 20 walks in 63 innings. Five of Godley’s starts have come on the road this season, where he is 1-1 with a 2.84 ERA and 1.14 WHIP.
He has pitched 11 career innings in five games (one start) against Los Angeles, yielding a 2.45 ERA. No Dodgers player has more at-bats against Godley than Justin Turner’s six, which he’s hitless in.
Joc Pederson is batting .305/.446/.695 with six home runs and 13 RBIs in 20 games since returning from the concussion disabled list.
After starting off the season slow, Logan Forsythe has also come on as of late, slashing .464/.545/.607 with four doubles in his last eight games. He also had back-to-back four hit games during that span for the first time in his career.
Chase Utley is leading off for the Dodgers and playing first base. The 38-year-old has 999 career RBIs in 15 seasons. He will become just the ninth active player to drive in 1,000 runs.
Paul Goldschmidt and A.J. Pollock have both had success off Wood in their careers. Goldschmidt is 4-for-14 with two home runs, while Pollock has also taken Wood deep twice, going 6-for-13.
Goldschmidt is having an MVP caliber season for Arizona. He leads the Major Leagues with 66 RBIs, while also ranking fourth with a 1.022 on-base plus slugging percentage.
1B: Chase Utley
SS: Corey Seager
3B: Justin Turner
RF: Cody Bellinger
CF: Joc Pederson
LF: Chris Taylor
C: Yasmani Grandal
2B: Logan Forsythe
P: Alex Wood
CF: A.J. Pollock
RF: David Peralta
1B: Paul Goldschmidt
SS: Chris Owings
2B: Brandon Drury
C: Chris Iannetta
LF: Daniel Descalso
3B: Ketel Marte
P: Zack Godley