Next up on the Los Angeles Dodgers’ compressed Spring Training schedule is split-squad games. The first game, at 12:05 p.m., will pit the Dodgers against the Texas Rangers, who they beat 2-1 at Camelback Ranch on Friday. In the second game, which is set for a 6:05 p.m. start, the Dodgers will host the Seattle Mariners, who they lost to on March 4.
Taking the mound for the Dodgers in the afternoon game and making his first start this spring will be Paul Maholm. The left-hander has made one appearance thus far, pitching two innings as he looks to earn the final spot in the starting rotation. Starting opposite Maholm will be right-hander Tanner Scheppers, who is also making his first spring start. Scheppers has a career record of 7-3 and three saves with the Rangers in two seasons.
Maholm’s teammate but competition for the fifth spot, Josh Beckett, will start against the Mariners. Beckett threw two innings against the San Diego Padres on March 2, allowing one hit and striking out three. If Beckett is able to remain healthy, he figures to hold an advantage over Maholm to make the five-man rotation. The starting pitcher for the Mariners is Blake Beavan. Beavan’s made one start this spring and seems to also be in a competition for the fifth spot in Seattle’s rotation.
Promising outfielder Joc Pederson is the only Dodger who’s slated to start in both games on Saturday. His day will begin in right field against the Rangers and he’ll then slide over to start in center field against the Mariners. The Dodgers announced Yasiel Puig won’t be in either lineup as he has been excused to tend to a personal matter. He’s expected to be back in camp on Sunday and will be in the lineup against the San Francisco Giants.
Chone Figgins and Dee Gordon will serve as the starting second basemen in their respective games. For Figgins, it’s back to second base after he started the last two games at third base and right field. Gordon will be looking to continue his impressive spring and will be making a second consecutive start at second base. His last start came against the Cincinnati Reds as the center fielder. As has been the case in the last couple of games, the starters should play for six innings as Opening Day in Australia is now two weeks away.
Between both games, six Dodgers will be playing in both. Infielders Miguel Rojas, Brendan Harris, Clint Robinson and Alex Guerrero along with outfielder Joc Pederson and Mike Baxter will face both the Rangers and Mariners.
SportsNet LA won’t be carrying the afternoon game, but will have coverage for the night game against the Mariners. The Dodgers radio network, AM 570, will have the game against the Rangers with Charley Steiner and Orel Hershiser.
Dodgers lineup (vs. Rangers):
Dodgers lineup (vs. Mariners):
RF: Van Slyke