The Los Angeles Dodgers were unable to end their losing streak on Friday night, as Matt Kemp’s three RBIs propelled the San Diego Padres to a win. San Diego’s victory snapped their five-game losing skid.
Starting pitching hasn’t necessarily been the issue, though the Dodgers’ offensive woes have certainly placed their starters under plenty of stress to hold opponents to one run or less. Ross Stripling is now tasked with keeping the Padres in check for the middle of the three-game series.
The rookie right-hander is 0-1 with a 3.22 ERA, 3.57 FIP and 1.29 WHIP through his first four starts. Since a strong Major Leaue debut in which he threw 7.1 no-hit innings, Stripling labored through the next three outings.
He’s allowed three runs on eight hits to the Miami Marlins over 5.1 innings. Prior to that, he allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits in just 3.2 innings pitched against the Atlanta Braves.
Stripling came away from his last start wanting to be more efficient moving forward. He’s thrown at least six innings only twice thus far. San Diego’s rookie starter, Colin Rea, can also benefit from being more efficient.
He limited the St. Louis Cardinals to three runs (two earned) in his last outing, but needed 101 pitches to get through five innings. The only time Rea has gone more than five innings in any of his four starts this season was when he tossed seven frames against the Philadelphia Phillies on April 13.
Rea allowed one run over one inning of relief against the Dodgers on Opening Day. In five games (four starts), the right-hander is 1-1 with a 5.06 ERA, 4.34 FIP and 1.69 WHIP. Rea allowed two runs and had six strikeouts over five innings in a start against the Dodgers last season.
Kiké Hernandez starts in right field, with Dodgers manager Dave Roberts giving Yasiel Puig a night off. Roberts believes Puig has been among the Dodgers pressing at the plate, and sitting on Saturday gives the dynamic outfielder a chance to “clear his mind.”
Roberts added the same applies to Howie Kendrick, who also isn’t in the lineup. The Dodgers otherwise have their regular starters on the field as they look to avoid a six-game losing streak for the first time since losing eight straight in May 2013.
2B: Chase Utley
SS: Corey Seager
3B: Justin Turner
1B: Adrian Gonzalez
C: Yasmani Grandal
RF: Kiké Hernandez
LF: Carl Crawford
CF: Joc Pederson
P: Ross Stripling
CF: Jon Jay
1B: Wil Myers
RF: Matt Kemp
LF: Melvin Upton Jr.
SS: Alexei Ramirez
C: Derek Norris
2B: Jemile Weeks
3B: Adam Rosales
P: Colin Rea