The Dodgers have assured themselves of no worse than a series split, but they’ll head back to American Family Field in Milwaukee this morning to try to beat Corbin Burnes and the Brewers for a series victory. The Dodgers will send the surprising Andrew Heaney to the mound against Burnes, looking to continue his unexpectedly great season.
In Heaney’s last start, on Saturday in Kansas City, Bobby Witt Jr. hit a 106.5-mph line drive up the middle that glanced off Heaney’s upper left (throwing) arm. Heaney stayed in the game and finished the inning by striking out Salvador Perez and Hunter Dozier on three pitches each, but with Heaney’s health history and the Dodgers 8-2 lead, manager Dave Roberts decided to pull Heaney from the game for precautionary reasons. Everything came back clean, and he’s well rested and ready to go in Milwaukee.
Only three current Brewers have ever faced Heaney, and they’re a combined 5-for-25, although Andrew McCutchen, Willy Adames, and Rowdy Tellez have each homered off him.
Beating Burnes will be a tough feat. His ERA this year is actually a bit better than last year, when he led the majors in ERA and won the NL Cy Young Award. But the underlying numbers say he hasn’t been quite as dominant this year. His strikeout rate, while still excellent, is down a bit from last year, he has already walked more batters than he did in 2021, and his home run rate is nearly triple what it was last year. Beating him won’t be easy, but the Dodgers offense has been mostly quiet the last couple days and might be looking for a breakout.
Nine different Dodgers have faced Burnes, and they’re a combined 8-for-20 (.400) with an OPS over 1.000 against him. Cody Bellinger is 2-for-6 with a homer, and Justin Turner is 2-for-4 with a double and a homer.
— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) August 18, 2022
The Dodgers are looking for their 27th series win of the season. Cody Bellinger is back in the lineup and batting ninth. Mookie Betts gets a day off, with Joey Gallo starting in right field and the rest of the big four just moving up one spot at the top of the lineup.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) August 18, 2022
Today’s game will mark the 117th game of the season for LA. They are currently 81-35, on pace for just over 113 wins. First pitch is scheduled for 11:10 AM PT.
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