Game One Hundred Twenty-Seven: Cubs (73-53) vs. Dodgers (70-56)
- Game Time – 9:10pm CDT
- Coverage – TV: WGN-TV Ch. 9, MLB Network – Radio: WBBM 780, Cubs Radio Network, XM Radio Channels 184, 844
- Location – Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles
Jason Hammel (7-5, 3.35/1.10/3.64) vs. Clayton Kershaw (10-6, 2.29/0.92/2.12)
The six-game West Coast road trip continues tonight with the first of three in Los Angeles. The Cubs turn to Jason Hammel to put an end to the two-game skid against Clayton Kershaw.
The Cubs split the four game series with the Dodgers at Wrigley at the end of June (June 22-25) and the series started with a win over Clayton Kershaw. Kris Bryant took him deep for a two-run shot in the third and lights at the old ballyard gave Joe Maddon a reason to put him on ice for a short-time.
After tonight’s match-up of Jason Hammel and Clayton Kershaw, Jon Lester is scheduled to face Mat Latos on Saturday. The series wraps Sunday night on the World Wide Leader with Jake Arrieta taking on lefty Alex Wood.
Dexter Fowler is not expected in the starting lineup, but the Cubs are hoping he will be able to play at some point this weekend. With the Cubs facing a pair of lefties, if Fowler is out it’s likely Kris Bryant could see more time in the outfield.
The Cubs must make the Dodgers’ starters work this weekend and get into Don Mattingly’s bullpen as soon as possible. The bridge between the starting staff and Kenley Jansen is shaky at best on a good day.
Chase Utley makes his first appearance in a Dodgers’ jersey tonight at Dodger Stadium. Utley wanted to be dealt to the Dodgers and viewed the Cubs as a back-up option. The Cubs staff must make sure he doesn’t have an impact for his new team this weekend. Utley has always hit Cubs’ pitching rather well, but he is only 4-for-21 with two doubles and a walk since the trade.
Tonight all starts with Jason Hammel …
It’s imperative for the Cubs that Jason Hammel gets back to his first half form. And Hammel took a big leap forward in his last start against the Braves. Hammel had his best outing against July 3. The numbers were good against a not-so-good team (two runs on six hits with a walk and eight strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings) but beyond the stat line Hammel kept the ball down and he looked a lot more comfortable on the mound. Hammel repeated his mechanics and appeared to throw free and easy.
Hammel is 1-0 in his last four starts with a 4.74 ERA and 1.42 WHIP. Hammel has allowed 10 runs on 22 hits with five walks and 23 strikeouts in 19 innings. Hammel is 5-3 in 11 road starts this year with a 3.17 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP. And he faces the Dodgers for the second time on the season tonight.
One of Hammel’s best starts of the year came against the Dodgers and Zack Greinke on June 23. Hammel tossed 7 2/3 innings of shutout ball and gave up only two hits and two walks to the Dodgers. Hammel struck out six in a game the Cubs eventually won 1-0.
Jason Hammel is 2-5 in 15 career appearances, 11 starts, versus the Dodgers with a 4.90 ERA and 1.53 WHIP … at Dodger Stadium, Hammel is 0-3 in seven games, four starts, with a 4.82 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.
Dodgers Career Numbers against Jason Hammel
- Adrian Gonzalez: 6-for-35 with two doubles, one home run and four walks
- Andre Ethier: 9-for-27 with one double, two home runs and five walks
- Jimmy Rollins: 3-for-19 with one home run and three walks
- Chase Utley: 4-for-7 with one home run and one walk
- Clayton Kershaw: 1-for-5
- Carl Crawford: 1-for-3 with one double
- A.J. Ellis: 0-for-3
- Yasmani Grandal: 0-for-3
- Kike Hernandez: 1-for-3
- Joc Pederson: 0-for-3
- Yasiel Puig: 1-for-3 with one triple
- Justin Turner: 1-for-1 with one walk
The Cubs have the pleasure of facing Clayton Kershaw tonight. Kershaw is the best lefty starter in the National League. The media tried to say Kershaw was having a bad season earlier in the year. Guess what, he was not and he’s been very, very good this season.
Kershaw is coming off an excellent outing against the Astros. Kershaw allowed just one run on seven hits with no walks and 10 strikeouts in eight innings. Kershaw received a no-decision after another Dodgers’ bullpen issue.
In seven starts since the break, Clayton Kershaw is 4-0 with a 1.00 ERA and 0.69 WHIP. Kershaw has allowed six runs on 32 hits with five walks and 62 strikeouts in 54 innings. Kershaw is 7-2 in 11 starts at Dodger Stadium with a 1.49 ERA and 0.80 WHIP.
The Cubs beat Kershaw at Wrigley back on June 22. The Cubs scored three runs on four hits with two walks in seven innings. Kershaw struck out nine Cubs in the loss. Clayton Kershaw is 4-3 in seven career starts against the Cubs with a 2.36 ERA and 1.14 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Clayton Kershaw
- Dexter Fowler: 17-for-40 with two doubles, one triple and four walks
- Chris Denorfia: 9-for-35 with two doubles, three home runs and six walks
- Miguel Montero: 6-for-29 with three doubles
- Starlin Castro: 2-for-20
- Jonathan Herrera: 2-for-13 with one double and one walk
- Anthony Rizzo: 2-for-8 with one double
- Chris Coghlan: 1-for-8
- Jason Hammel: 0-for-4 with two walks
- Tommy La Stella: 1-for-4
- Matt Szczur: 2-for-4 with one double and one home run
- Kris Bryant: 1-for-2 with one home run and one walk
- Addison Russell: 0-for-3
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …