Today the Dodgers announced that All-Star pitcher Walker Buehler will start game 1 of the 2019 National League Division Series on Thursday at Dodger Stadium. Buehler will match up against left-handed pitcher Patrick Corbin of the Washington Nationals.
Walker Buehler will start Game 1 of the NLDS
— Dodger Insider (@DodgerInsider) October 2, 2019
Walker got the nod over NL Cy Young hopeful Hyun-Jin Ryu, and 3-time Cy Young award winner Clayton Kershaw.
On the season, the right-handed flame thrower made a career high 30 starts, recording a 14-4 record and 3.26 ERA in 182.1 innings pitched. In 3 career games (2 starts) against Washington, Buehler has allowed 5 earned runs in 13.1 innings for a 3.38 ERA.
The 25 year-old made his first All-Star roster in 2019, tossing one inning and allowing one run while striking out 2.
With his off and on struggles with home/road splits this season, it’s not overly surprising that manager Dave Roberts went with Buehler at home. This would also conceivably line Buehler up to start a potential NLDS game 5 at home against Washington, or game 1 of the NLCS at home.
A side note to the story is that this marks the second consecutive season that Kershaw doesn’t take the ball in a game 1.
#Dodgers starter, Game 1 NLDS:
2013-17: Clayton Kershaw
2018: Hyun-Jin Ryu
2019: Walker Buehler
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) October 2, 2019
Patrick Corbin will start Game 1 of the NLDS against the Dodgers, per Dave Martinez.
— Jamal Collier (@JamalCollier) October 2, 2019
In his first season with the Nats, Corbin went 14-7 with a 3.25 ERA in 33 starts. Moreover, the long time Arizona Diamondback has pitched well in his career against the Dodgers. In 21 previous matchups (19 starts) the lefty owns a 5-9 record against LA, but a solid 3.36 ERA in 109.2 innings pitched. At Dodger Stadium, his ERA drops to 2.97 over 60.2 innings.
But he’s been even better in recent vintage. Including 7 shutout innings in 2019, Corbin has allowed only 2 earned runs over his last 30.1 innings (5 starts) against the Dodgers.
Game 1 of the NLDS will kick off at Dodger Stadium at 5:37pm PST on Thursday.