The Los Angeles Dodgers lost a second consecutive game Friday night but still managed to stay within one game of the San Francisco Giants, who were handed a home defeat by the Baltimore Orioles.
Saturday’s afternoon matchup with the Pittsburgh Pirates features a pair of right-handers who have endured their share of recent struggles. After struggling in his past three starts, Brandon McCarthy threw a pair of bullpen sessions this week to sort out mechanical issues.
McCarthy tossed just 3.2 innings in his last start, matching a career high with five walks and throwing several pitches to the backstop.
The 33-year-old is is 1-2 with a 4.74 ERA and 1.68 WHIP in four career games (three starts) against the Pirates. McCarthy last faced them in 2014.
He enters with a 2-2 record this season, 3.00 ERA, 3.62 FIP and 1.12 WHIP in seven starts. The Pirates counter with ace Gerrit Cole. In his last start, the 25-year-old struggled against the slumping Cincinnati Reds.
In a loss at PNC Park, Cole allowed three hits, three walks, and four runs in 5.2 innings pitched. The UCLA product has lost three of his last five starts, allowing 16 hits and 10 runs (nine earned) in that span.
Cole is 3-0 with a 4.32 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in four career starts against the Dodgers. He allowed three runs on six hits in a victory at Dodger Stadium last September. On the season he’s 7-7 with a 2.94 ERA, 2.85 FIP and 1.27 WHIP.
Justin Turner was a late scratch from the Dodgers lineup due to a right hand contusion. He’s replaced at third base by Rob Segedin, who makes his fourth career start. Segedin is 3-for-11 (.273) with six RBIs.
Andrew McCutchen hit one of the Pirates’ two home runs Friday night, and drove in two of their five runs. He’s a lifetime 4-for-10 with one double and one RBI off McCarthy. Starling Marte is 5-for-10 with one double and two RBIs against the Dodgers’ starter.
2B: Chase Utley
RF: Josh Reddick
SS: Corey Seager
1B: Adrian Gonzalez
CF: Joc Pederson
LF: Howie Kendrick
3B: Rob Segedin
C: A.J. Ellis
P: Brandon McCarthy
2B: Adam Frazier
LF: Starling Marte
CF: Andrew McCutchen
RF: Gregory Polanco
3B: Jung Ho-Kang
1B: John Jaso
C: Francisco Cervelli
SS: Jordy Mercer
P: Gerrit Cole