Spiegel’s LA vs MIL Pre-Game: The triumphant return

Break out the red carpet! Pop the champagne! He has finally returned!

Nathan Eovaldi is back!!!!

Okay, so Matt Kemp‘s return might overshadow Eovaldi’s 2012 debut, but needless to say there are multiple reasons to be excited in Los Angeles today.

After spending two nights mashing in Albuquerque, Kemp will make his triumphant return to Los Angeles tonight to face Milwuakie’s Michael Fiers, who is making his first start of the year.

For the Dodgers, Eovaldi will make his first 2012 start after making quite an impression in limited action last season. In six starts, Eovaldi threw 32 innings and allowed just 11 runs – five of which came in one start. The 22-year-old Texan is one of the Dodgers’ top pitching prospects, so it was only a matter of time before he returned to the bigs.

Milwaukee Brewers (20-28) at Los Angeles Dodgers (32-16)
5:10 PM PST, May 29, 2012
Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, California
Radio: 570 AM (English), 1020 AM (Spanish)
Game-Time Weather: 71 degrees, Mostly Sunny

Brewers Projected Starters:
P: Mi
chael Fiers
C: Jonathan Lucroy
1B: Brooks Conrad
2B: Rickie Weeks
SS: Cody Ransom
3B: Aramis Ramirez
LF: Ryan Braun
CF: Nyjer Morgan
RF: Corey Hart

Key Bench Players: OF Norichika AokiOF Carlos Gomez

Dodgers Last 10: (7-3): L vs MIL, W vs HOU, W vs HOU, L vs HOU, L @ ARI, W @ ARI, W @ ARI, W vs STL, W vs STL, W vs STL. 
Brewers Last 10:
 (4-6): W @ LAD, L @ ARI, L @ ARI, W @ ARI, W vs SF,  L vs SF, L vs SF,  W vs MIN, L vs MIN, L vs MIN.

Fun Facts:

  • As a team, the Dodgers are batting 1.000 against Fiers in their career. The only problem is, Mark Eliis, who is 1/1 lifetime, is currently on the disabled list. No active Dodger has seen Fiers pitch.
  • Eovaldi made one start against the Brewers last season, lasting six innings and allowing two earned runs in a 3-1 Dodgers loss.
  • Last night’s one-run loss was the Dodgers’ first since Matt Kemp went on the disabled list, and it was also the first time since he was out that the Giants gained a game on L.A.

Keys to a Dodger Victory:

– Spark the home crowd

While the home attendance has been steadily improving, the return of Kemp should bring a raucous environment to Chavez Ravine tonight – something the Dodgers could really benefit from feeding off of. An early Kemp hit would do wonders for their confidence.

-Don’t give up now

While numerous guys have picked up the slack in Kemp’s absence, now that he has returned, Don Mattingly needs to make sure his team stays focused and doesn’t take their foot off the gas. Sure, the best hitter in baseball is back, but he still needs some help.

Best-Case Prediction: Dodgers 6, Brewers 2
 Brewers 5, Dodgers 4

Staff Writer

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