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Dodgers Padres Square Off In First Meeting In LA This Year

It will take more bats to come out on top in LA/Padres series/ William Coppola

Los Angeles, California: The Padres, who are 1.5 games back of the Dodgers in the NL West, are in LA for a 4 game series this weekend. It will be the first time the Padres play the Dodgers in Los Angeles this year. Their only other meeting was April 22-24 in San Diego where they lost 2 of 3 to the boys in blue. They did lead the National League in road game wins (25-15, .615) going into this series, so this looks to be a weekend that should have one of these teams in first place by a game or two or at least tied at the halfway point of the season.

The Dodgers are still without Mookie Betts (right rib fracture). Today he took swings from the cage for about 10 minutes thrown from 40 feet. All hits went to center or right as he did not try to pull any balls. Throwing remains a problem, according to Manager Dave Roberts, who added that he is “very optimistic” that Betts will be back before the All-Star break, probably as the DH.

As for the injured stars on the Padres, Fernando Tatis Jr., San Pedro De Macoris, Dominican Republic, is expected to begin swinging a bat full speed in two weeks. Tatis said, “It’s timing, seeing pitches.” Third baseman Manny Machado, who has missed nine games because of a left ankle sprain will be the DH tonight.

The 53,094 people who came to Chavez Ravine, the 9th sellout at Dodger Stadium this year, got to see some old school baseball at its best when Padres C.J. Abrams bunted safely on a 0-1 count with 1 out and runners on first and second. Then with the bases loaded leadoff hitter Jurickson Profar, Willemstad, Curacao hit a sure RBI fly out to Chris Taylor in right who then gunned down Trent Grisham at home. Assisted by a great catch and tag by Will Smith at the plate. I feel Smith is the best catcher in baseball right now.

Dodger starter, RHP Mitch White, 1-1,  4.25 ERA, went 4.2 innings, 6 hits, 1 run. That was all the Dodgers needed from him and probably more than they expected.

Padres starter, RHP Joe Musgrove, 8-1, 2.12 ERA, was sailing along after 6 innings with 9 strikeouts, 3 hits and 1 run when he walked his first batter of the night and was then greeted by the second of Justin Turner’s 2 home runs and his 3rd RBI of the night. Turner accounted for all of the Dodger runs tonight. Musgrove finished with a line of 7 innings, 5 hits, 3 runs, 2 HR, 1 walk, 9 strikeouts.

A miss-play by Gavin Lux in the first inning on a Machado single to left turned that single into a double allowing him to later score on a routine single to centerfield by Dominican born Nomar Mazara. It accounted for the only run by San Diego.

Tomorrow’s starters will be Blake Snell 0-5, 5.60 ERA for the Padres and Tony Gonsolin 9-0, 1.58 ERA for the Dodgers.

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