Nationals @ Dodgers May 15, 2013: It’s Greinke Time

May 15, 2013 at 7:29 pm | Posted in Game Threads | Leave a comment

dodger_stadium_openingday2013Zack Greinke is back. It’s probably too soon, and we all pray it’s not. I think that’s been made pretty clear over the last few days, so all we can do is enjoy the fact that he’s on the mound tonight rather than Matt Magill, and hope that’s able to be effective. Don’t look now, but if the Dodgers win tonight, they’ll head into tomorrow’s off day having won four of five.

So what’s news? Josh Beckett is off to the disabled list with a strained groin, as absolutely all of us expected. He is, believe it or not, the sixth different Dodger starting pitcher to go on the DL this year. It’s May 15. But hey, fire Don Mattingly, you guys.

Nationals
Dodgers
CF
Span
SS
Gordon
LF
Lombardozzi
2B
Punto
3B
Zimmerman
CF
Kemp
1B
LaRoche
1B
Gonzalez
SS
Desmond
C
A.Ellis
C
Ramos
RF
Ethier
2B
Espinosa
LF
Van Slyke
RF
Bernadina
3B
Uribe
P
Detwiler
P
Greinke

After tomorrow’s day off, Hyun-jin Ryu & Chris Capuano are lined up to start the first two games in Atlanta this weekend. That most likely lines up Magill to make the Sunday start; it’s not confirmed yet, but unless you really want Ted Lilly on three days rest — or any days rest, ever, at any time — the other options are limited.

I’ll tell you who it won’t be, however, because apparently I can’t avoid talking about him any longer: it won’t be Jonathan Sanchez, who did sign a minor league deal with the Dodgers today. Pedro Gomez of ESPN broke the news, and the way he keeps describing it on Twitter is that Albuquerque is just a pit stop for Sanchez on the way to Los Angeles.

But let’s be honest here: Sanchez is available now because he’s awful. He was DFA’d by Kansas City last year because he’s awful. He wasn’t retained by Colorado last year because he’s awful. He was cut loose by Pittsburgh this year after only four starts because he was, wait for it, awful. (And kind of a jerk, too) Those are three teams who are generally so desperate for pitching that anyone with a pulse and a left arm is valuable to them, and all three said, “thanks, but no thanks.”

So what do the Dodgers want with him? Here’s five names: Matt Palmer, Aaron Laffey, Blake Johnson, Angel Castro, & Anthony Ortega. That quintet, at least while Sean White & Stephen Fife are hurt and Magill is with the Dodgers, is currently the Albuquerque starting rotation. That’s bad; that’s real bad, and while Sanchez is probably not much better, do remember that this is a minor league deal that has a July 1 opt-out. If Sanchez is starting for the Dodgers by then, then I’m guessing this club has much, much bigger problems.

All of which brings us back to tonight’s lineup, which in theory could be considered “a much bigger problem” since Carl Crawford is taking a seat against lefty Ross Detwiler, which allows Dee Gordon to get another chance to lead off. But you know what? I don’t hate this as much as you’d think I’d would. Mattingly has been good about keeping Gordon out of the leadoff spot with Crawford around, and it’s not like there’s another obvious option here, and I do like that he’s got Andre Ethier behind A.J. Ellis against the lefty and that Scott Van Slyke gets a chance instead of trying to force Skip Schumaker into the lineup.

Mostly, I just like that Luis Cruz is nowhere to be found, and as Mark Ellis & Jerry Hairston continue to rehab, I truly think that the day where we’re Cruz-free is coming soon.

Anyway, this is the last home game before the team heads out on the road, so be sure to check out some Dodgers tickets.

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