The Los Angeles Dodgers (13-2, 7-2 away) aim to sweep the San Diego Padres (9-7, 4-5 home) and win their ninth-straight game in a row. The Dodgers won the opening two games against the Padres, 11-6 and 2-0.
Sunday’s first pitch is at 4:10 p.m. EST inside PETCO Park in San Diego, CA. The Dodgers are favored (-120), and the total is 7.5 in the series finale against two National League West rivals.
What to Know – Los Angeles Dodgers
The defending World Series champions haven’t missed a beat this season, putting together one of the best starts by a team in recent memory. L.A.’s victories over the Padres have moved the Dodgers into a comfortable 4.5 game lead in the NL West standings.
Right-hander Trevor Bauer (2-0, 2.70 WHIP, 0.60 ERA) looks to keep his record perfect in his fourth start of the 2021 campaign. Bauer’s best start came in his last, firing 7.0 innings of scoreless ball, allowing one hit, two walks, and striking out nine. The 30-year old won the NL Cy Young Award last season playing for the Cincinnati Reds.
The Dodgers offense ranks at or near the top of about every offensive category in the majors. L.A. ranks third in team batting average (.271), while the Dodgers are second in RBI (82) and lead the league in hits (141).
Third baseman Justin Turner is off to a scorching start at the plate, hitting .426 (23-of-54) with five home runs, 16 RBI, and 13 runs scored. 25-year old Zach McKinstry has been a surprise, with three home runs and 13 RBI in 14 games played.
What to Know – San Diego Padres
San Diego welcomed back Frenando Tatis Jr. to the lineup, but the young phenom hasn’t provided the spark the Padres needed. The Padres are just 2-4 over their last six, including a 2-2 record in a four-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Padres send 28-year old Blake Snell (0-0, 4.35 ERA, 1.65 WHIP) to the mound. Snell lasted through just two outs in his last start, scattering three hits, issuing two walks, and plating three runs against Pittsburgh. The lefty was brought into the Padres rotation this offseason after competing with the Tampa Bay Rays last year.
San Diego is third in the majors in hits (131) but ranks 15th in runs (64). Timely hitting has been an issue for the Padres through the first month of the season. The team sports a .245 team batting average.
Veteran Eric Hosmer is off to a great start at the dish, hitting .333 with three home runs and a team-high 12 RBI. The versatile Wil Myers has also put together an excellent start at the plate, batting .333 with three home runs and 11 RBI.
The Pick is In
The Padres desperately need a victory and do not want to get swept by their divisional rivals. Only a handful of batters have ever faced Bauer, so it’ll be interesting to see how the team does early on in the game.
Snell has struggled early on this season, and that is not a good receipt for success against one of the best lineups in baseball. Bauer keeps the Padres lineup in check, and the Dodgers head up the coast with a series sweep over San Diego.
Pick: Los Angeles Dodgers ML