The Dodgers have landed in Monterrey, Mexico and are set to kick off a 3-game series tonight against the San Diego Padres (11-21). The Dodgers are trying to get things back on track after a worrisome start to the season (14-17), but things are looking up after stealing the final two games in Arizona. To get you ready for the upcoming series, here are a few things to know about this series in Mexico.
- This is the first baseball game played in Mexico since 1999 when the Padres played the Rockies in a one-game season opener.
- The two teams will play at the newly renovated Estadio de Beisbol in Monterrey, Mexico, which is the home field of the Sultanes Monterrey Mexican League baseball team. The field holds 27,000 seats and is the largest baseball stadium in Mexico. The dimensions of the field are 325ft to Left, 405ft to Center, 325ft to Right, so it’s relatively similar to Dodger Stadium.
Friday, May 4th @ 6:10pm (SNLA): Walker Buehler (1-0, 1.80) vs. Joey Lucchesi (3-1, 2.78)
This matchup features both team’s top pitching prospects within their organization. Buehler is the number 1 pitching prospect in the Dodgers organization, and Lucchesi is the 4th best prospect in the Padres organization. It should be a good matchup of the future of both team’s rotations.
Saturday, May 5th @7:10pm (FS1): Kenta Maeda (2-2, 3.76) vs. Bryan Mitchell (0-3, 6.07)
This offseason Bryan Mitchell was traded from the Yankees along with Chase Headley in exchange for Jabari Blash. Mitchell has struggled with his command this season with an atrocious 0.6K/BB ratio. Maeda has a 4.93 ERA in his last four starts, including a start where he allowed 4 earned runs in 5 2/3rd against the Padres on April 18th. Maeda did strikeout 10 Padres in that start, however.
Sunday, May 6th @ 4:00pm (ESPN): Rich Hill (1-1, 6.00) vs Eric Lauer (0-1, 10.13)
Rich Hill will be making his return from the DL for the first time since April 14th when he suffered an infection in his finger. In 3 starts this season, Hill is allowing hitters to hit .293 with 3 home runs. Hill has pitched well against the Padres in the past with a 0.87 ERA, and a 4-0 record in 31 innings pitched.
*Dodgers bullpen has been overworked the past 4 games, pitching over 17 2/3 innings.*
Hitters to Watch:
Dodgers: Alex Verdugo has been impressive since his call-up on April 28th. He’s hitting .353 with an OBP of .421 and 4 doubles. He’s only failed to get a hit in one game and has been struck out only once in 17 at-bats.
Padres: Eric Hosmer is tearing the cover off the ball his past 7 games he owns a .458/.536/.833 slash rate with 6 extra base hits. He’s hitting .343 against right-handed pitching so he could make an impact early in the series against Buehler and Maeda.
Series Takeaways and Predictions:
The Dodgers are in prime position to get back to .500 on the season with a series sweep against a weak Padres team. The Padres have a very pesky lineup, but the pitching in this series should favor the Dodgers. I’m hoping to see Buehler pitch past the 5th inning for the first time and will be watching Hill’s return very closely. It’s great to have major league baseball back in Mexico, and the Dodgers will not be low on support below the border. Two of the three games will be nationally televised so be sure to tune in this weekend. Always remember that if you can’t tune in, just set up mobile notifications on our Twitter page @RavineFiends.