DODGERS (30-17) AT REDS (21-25)
1:10 p.m. ET; FS-O, SNLA, MLB.TV
Seven of the past 10 games for the Los Angeles Dodgers have involved a shutout, one way or another, and left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu has played a big role in the run.
Ryu hasn’t allowed a run in his past two starts and has pitched 24 straight scoreless innings overall. He’ll try to continue his stretch of dominant pitching when the Dodgers visit the Cincinnati Reds in the finale of their three-game series on Sunday afternoon.
Ryu (5-1, 1.72 ERA) comes in with the second lowest ERA in the majors behind Zach Davies of the Milwaukee Brewers (1.54).
“He’s off to a tremendous start,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.
He carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning of his last start, a 6-0 victory against the visiting Washington Nationals. Before that, he threw a 93-pitch complete game in a 9-0 victory against the visiting Atlanta Braves.
Ryu’s dominance hasn’t been limited to his recent outings either. He hasn’t allowed more than two runs in any of his eight starts this season.
“This is just a continuance of what we saw last year,” Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said. “Hyun-Jin does his homework, he prepares extremely well. He knows the areas he’s going to each at-bat. He never tries to do too much of the same thing to the same guy. He has so many weapons to keep them off guard.”
The Dodgers shut out the Reds 6-0 in the series opener on Friday night, their second straight shutout, but it was the Reds who were putting up the zeros on Saturday, limiting Los Angeles to four hits in a 4-0 victory.
Tanner Roark (3-2, 3.50 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Reds in the rubber game of the series. He last faced the Dodgers exactly one year ago Sunday when he was with the Nationals, allowing three runs in seven innings of a 4-1 defeat.
Cincinnati manager David Bell said the Dodgers present a challenge for his pitching staff, particularly the right-handers like Roark.
“We definitely have to find ways to get out their left-handed hitters,” Bell said. “Not only are they left-handed, but they’re good left-handed hitters. We believe in our starters’ ability to be able to do that.”
The most dangerous left-handed bat in the Los Angeles lineup has been right fielder Cody Bellinger. He went 2-for-3 on Saturday to raise his batting average to a major-league leading .409.
Fellow lefty bats Corey Seager, Joc Pederson, Alex Verdugo and Max Muncy also batted in the top five of the lineup for the Dodgers on Saturday and will likely occupy those spots against Roark.
Jose Peraza is expected back in the Reds lineup after he rested on Saturday. The right-handed hitting second baseman is hitting just .203 after hitting .288 in 157 games last season. He’s 4-for-7 in his career off Ryu.
Reds first baseman Joey Votto has had similar success off Ryu. He is 4-for-11 with a home run.
Los Angeles third baseman Justin Turner did not start Saturday after fouling a pitch off his shin Friday night, but he pinch hit in the ninth and grounded out to end the game.
–Field Level Media