The Dodgers return to Dodger Stadium after being swept by the Cincinnati Reds. Each game was decided by one run and unfortunately the Dodgers weren’t able to gain any ground on the Atlanta Braves. Luckily for the Dodgers, the Braves have lost four in a row as the  best record in the NL is still within reach.

After leading the division for the beginning portion of the season, Diamondbacks are trying to catch the Dodgers in the NL West  as they start a three-game series at Chavez Ravine tonight. While they’ll begin the series 11 games behind, the two teams will play each other seven times in the next 10 days.

At Dodger Stadium, the Diamondbacks are 5-1 this season and 7-5 overall against the Dodgers. Although they haven’t played since early July, the D-Backs still have slim hopes of getting back in the race for the NL West and they’re going to need every game against the Dodgers.

Here are they keys to the series:

1. Offense:

The Dodgers were swept by the Reds and each time they lost, it was by a single run. They combined to score seven runs in the entire series and facing a good Reds team isn’t going to cut it. Against the DBacks, the Dodgers will need to get their bats going as sluggers Yasiel Puig, Andre Ethier and Adrian Gonzalez will need to wake up.

2. Edinson Volquez:

Volquez will get the ball for the second game against the Diamondbacks and after his first start against the Rockies didn’t go as planned, he’ll need to prove he’s fixed some things. In his only start against the DBacks this season, Volquez picked up the win in 6.2 innings, allowing one run on four hits, but that was back in May.

3. Score early on Patrick Corbin:

Corbin will face Hyun-Jin Ryu in the series finale at Dodger Stadium and he’s already beaten the Dodgers twice this season. While he’s been in the conversation for NL Cy Young, the left hander hasn’t won since August 20th. If the Dodgers can get up early against Corbin, they’ll be in great position the rest of the game.

Prediction:

The Dodgers will win two out of three and after losing four in a row, a series win against one of their NL West rivals should help as they prepare for a deep postseason run.

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In case you missed it, be sure to find out more about Matt Kemp’s rehab.

About The Author

Staff writer for Dodgers Nation and excited to cover the best team in baseball. Follow him on Twitter at @uclakers38

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