The Interleague series between the Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Dodgers started off with a stellar pitching performance from both teams as Dan Haren, Brian Wilson and Kenley Jansen held the Indians to one hit in a win.
Taking the mound for the Dodgers Tuesday is Josh Beckett, who makes his 16th start this season. Beckett is 5-4 with a 2.11 ERA, which is currently fifth in the Major Leagues among qualified pitchers. The right-hander has not given up an earned run in three of his last six starts, and has not given up more than three earned runs in a start this year.
The Dodgers have also won three of Beckett’s last four starts. With Beckett’s WHIP of 1.00, which is currently fourth in the National League, he has emerged into the starting pitcher the Dodgers hoped they were receiving in the trade with the Boston Red Sox. In Beckett’s last start, he pitched seven shutout innings and only allowed four hits against the St. Louis Cardinals team.
In his career, Beckett has made 11 starts against the Indians and has not faired all that well. The right-hander is 4-6, with a dismal ERA of 5.65.
After a strong outing from Corey Kluber Monday, the Indians turn the ball over to Justin Masterson. The right-handed pitcher has not had the kind of season the Indians were expecting out of their perennial ace. Masterson is 4-5 with a disappointing ERA of 5.03 in 17 starts.
Masterson has been plagued all season by a sore knee and that finally resulted in his last start being pushed back two days. In his last start, Masterson surrendered five runs on seven hits and walked four in just four innings of work.
In his six seasons in the Majors, Masterson has never faced the Dodgers. The San Diego State alumni will look to put together a start that will convince the staff that he has healed from the sore knee and can continue to pitch.
After yesterday’s win, the Dodgers now have gained sole possession of the NL West from the San Francisco Giants and lead by half a game. Carlos Triunfel replaces Miguel Rojas at shortstop with Hanley Ramirez still on the mend and Drew Butera spells A.J. Ellis behind the plate.
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