Rogers' ESPN Sunday Night SHOWDOWN >> GIANTS @ DODGERS!
San Francisco vs. LA Dodgers,
04/01/2018 20:37 EDT,
Score: 0 - 9
Money Line: -171 LA Dodgers
The set-up: The Dodgers opened the season by getting shutout in back-to-back 1-0 losses to the hated Giants, then broke through for the first time in 2018 by beating the Giants on Saturday with a shutout of their own, 5-0. The Dodgers had just four hits in the win, after getting only a combined seven in losing Thursday and Friday. The team's lack of offense is a concern but the starting pitching has been outstanding, with Kenta Maeda being no exception in last night's win. He struck out 10 over five innings in Saturday’s 5-0 victory as the Dodgers recorded their first win following those back-to-back 1-0 losses. Joe Panik’s two solo HRs on Thursday and Friday were enough for the Giants to open 2-0 but last night, the team's nine hits did not produce a run, as the Giants went 0-10 with RISP and left 10 men on base. The Giants’ bullpen has been outstanding, with Hunter Strickland taking for Mark Melancon (right elbow) to lead a rejuvenated group that hasn’t allowed a run over nine innings in the first three games.
The pitching matchup: Chris Stratton (2017: 4-4, 3.68 ERA) will start for the Giants and LA sends lefty Rich Hill (2017: 12-8, 3.32 ERA) to the mound. Stratton has bounced between the minors and majors for the last two seasons but earned a spot in the rotation after posting a 3.29 ERA over 27 1/3 innings this spring,while drawing raves for his improved curveball. He owns a 1-1 record and 6.75 ERA in three career games (two starts) against the Dodgers. In contrast to Stratton, Hill registered a 7.30 ERA across 12 1/3 innings in four spring training games, including a rough five-inning stint against the Los Angeles Angels on Monday. He has battled blister problems over the past two years but the Dodgers won 14 of his last 21 starts in 2017, before going 3-1 in his four postseason starts. He is 5-2 with a 2.43 ERA in 11 career starts versus the Giants, including 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA in three starts last season.
The pick: Sure, the Giants won the first two games of this series but the Giants are batting .131 as a team, are 1-for-21 with runners in scoring position, have struck out 27 times in their first 27 innings and newcomer Evan Longoria is hitless in his first 11 at-bats. It's no surprise then to learn that LA pitching owns an 0.67 ERA and 0.89 WHIP in the three-game series so far. No team had a better home record than LA did last year (57-24), while no team performed worse on the road than the Giants (26-55). Make LA an 8* play.