Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Dodgers – 08/27/13

Game One Hundred Thirty-Two: Cubs (55-76) vs. Dodgers (77-54)

  • Game Time – 9:10pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 183/844
  • Location – Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles

Travis Wood (7-10, 3.22/1.11/3.88) vs. Clayton Kershaw (13-7, 1.72/0.86/2.39)

The Cubs series in Los Angeles continues tonight with Travis Wood taking the hill against Clayton Kershaw.

The Cubs have dropped eight in a row to the Dodgers for the first time since 1975 and it does not figure to get any easier tonight facing the best starting pitcher in the game. The Cubs snapped a string of 31 2/3 scoreless innings against Dodgers’ pitching by scoring two runs in the ninth inning on Monday and runs figure to be few and far between with Kershaw on the mound.

The Cubs have not scored a single run in support for Travis Wood over his last three starts (20 innings) and Dale Sveum is expected to run out his right-handed lineup. Dioner Navarro should be behind the plate with Darnell McDonald in left and Cole Gillespie in right. Nate Schierholtz and Welington Castillo are both nursing injuries and looked like on Sunday they would not be in Monday’s lineup.

Tonight it all starts with Travis Wood

Travis Wood pitched better against the Nationals than his final line indicates. Wood settled down after a rough start and really pitched well. Wood was charged with four runs on seven hits with two walks and four strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings. The Nationals scored two of their four runs off Wood on two home runs. Wood was taken off the hook after the offense scored four times against Stephen Strasburg in the eighth and ninth innings.

Travis Wood has pitched well in stretches since the break but not with the same consistency as in the first half. Wood is 1-4 in his last seven starts with a 4.46 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP.

Like the rest of his teammates, Travis Wood has performed much better on the road this season than at Wrigley Field. Wood is 3-3 in 10 road starts with a 2.89 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP.

Travis Wood’s worst start of the season and arguably his worst start in a Cubs’ uniform came against the Dodgers at Wrigley Field on August 2. Travis Wood had zero command and gave up five runs on seven hits in 3 1/3 innings. Wood issued a season-high five walks. Wood is 1-2 in four career starts against the Dodgers with a 7.65 ERA and a 2.05 WHIP … at Dodger Stadium, 1-0 in one start with a 1.50 ERA and a 1.67 WHIP (one run on five hits with five walks and two strikeouts in six innings).

Dodgers Career Numbers against Travis Wood

  • Mark Ellis – 2-for-6 with a double and a walk
  • A.J. Ellis – 0-for-2 with two walks
  • Andre Ethier – 3-for-8 with two doubles and a walk
  • Adrian Gonzalez – 2-for-6 with a double
  • Jerry Hairston Jr. – 1-for-1
  • Yasiel Puig – 1-for-1 with a walk
  • Nick Punto – 2-for-8 with a double
  • Hanley Ramirez – 2-for-5 with two doubles
  • Juan Uribe – 1-for-5 with two walks

What can be said about Clayton Kershaw that already hasn’t been published hundreds of times? Kershaw is the best southpaw in the game and arguably the best pitcher in all of baseball. All the 25-year old lefty does is win games, and when he doesn’t, it is because the Dodgers did not score enough runs.

Kershaw has allowed more than two runs one time in his last ten starts and the Dodgers are 7-3 during that span. And the last time Kershaw allowed a run was on August 11 against the Rays. Kershaw is an amazing 5-1 in his last seven starts with a 1.02 ERA and a 0.72 WHIP (49 strikeouts, eight walks and 30 hits allowed in 53 innings) and 3-1 in his last four outings with a 0.90 ERA and a 0.83 WHIP.

The last time a Cubs’ team faced a Dodgers’ southpaw on this kind of a run was Sandy Koufax on September 9, 1965 at Dodger Stadium.

Clayton Kershaw makes his fifth career start against the Cubs tonight. Kershaw is 3-1 in the first four with a 1.61 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Clayton Kershaw

  • Darwin Barney (.234) – 1-for-7
  • Welington Castillo (.345) – 1-for-3
  • Starlin Castro (.286) – 0-for-13
  • Cole Gillespie (.323) – 1-for-8
  • Darnell McDonald (.154) – 1-for-2 with a home run and a walk
  • Donnie Murphy (.316) – 0-for-3
  • Cody Ransom (.250) – 1-for-5 with a home run and two walks
  • Anthony Rizzo (.252) – 0-for-3
  • Nate Schierholtz (.297) – 2-for-6 with a double and a walk

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