The La Russa Heartbreakometer
|Ender Inciarte - RF||Justin Ruggiano - LF|
|Aaron Hill - 2B||Jimmy Rollins - SS|
|A.J. Pollock - CF||Justin Turner - 3B|
|Paul Goldschmidt - 1B||Howie Kendrick - 2B|
|Welington Castillo - C||Scott Van Slyke - 1B|
|Yasmany Tomas - LF||A.J. Ellis - C|
|Brandon Drury - 3B||Chris Heisey - CF|
|Chris Owings - SS||Scott Schebler - RF|
|Patrick Corbin - LHP||Clayton Kershaw - LHP|
Why, no, I did not entirely forget that today's series finale against the Dodgers was an afternoon game. I always write my best recaps, propelled by a sense of impending doom and a realization that first pitch is not more than an hour away.... Having failed to take advantage of the opportunity provided by Zack Greinke's absenxe yesterday - well, that's rather more on the bullpen and (lack of) offense than anything else - we now enter Boss Level, and if we're to leave Los Angeles with our first series win there since June of 2013 (having lost the last six in a row), the road is going to go through the reigning Cy Young winner.
That said, we have had our moments against Kershaw, as I'm sure you don't need reminding. Unfortunately, he has also had his moments against us as well. His last six starts against the Diamondbacks have all involved him allowed either one run, or six-plus. There is absolutely no middle ground: on that basis, if we get a second tally this afternoon, I'm taking it as a sign that the floodgates are inevitably going to happen. The historical record does not lie in regard to such things. But overall, we have probably done as good a job as anyone of handling him: over his last 11 starts against us, the Dodgers have gone 3-8, though all three wins are since the start of 2014.
It does look a little bit like a B-lineup for Los Angeles as well, since they're apparently stacking their line-up to face Corbin. No Grandal, Gonzalez, Ethier, Pederson or Seager, which would definitely seem to be helpful. Corbin has continued to look strong as he recovers from Tommy John. His last five starts have all been at least six innings, with a 1.44 ERA in that time, and a K:BB ratio of 25"2. He has not allowed a walk this month, and will be going for his fifth consecutive walk-free start, which is something not often done in team history. It's our ace against their ace, so let's do this thing!