The Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres take center stage on Sunday Night Baseball in San Diego with a pair of veteran pitchers acquired at the trade deadline looking to help their team’s playoff hopes.
Los Angeles Dodgers (-120, 9.5) vs. San Diego Padres
The Dodgers give Lance Lynn his second start on the mound since acquiring him, with Lynn winning his first start despite allowing three home runs to Oakland Athletics along the way.
Lynn has had a tough time keeping the ball in the park, allowing 2.2 home runs per nine innings, which is a big reason his ERA is 6.32 this season, but his fielding independent is a full point lower at 5.32 and is getting 10.7 strikeouts per nine innings.
With Lynn’s hard contact issues, this being a road start might be to his benefit as the Padres average over 1.5 home runs per on the road compared to fewer than 1.1 home runs per game at home with Petco Park being one of the best pitchers parks in the league.
Also at Lynn’s disposal is a Dodgers bullpen that has performed much better of late, leading the league with a 2.84 bullpen ERA since June 30 entering Saturdays while the Padres entered the weekend 25th in bullpen ERA in that span.
For the Padres, the oldest active pitcher in the league, Rich Hill, gets his first start as a member of the San Diego Padres after going 7-10 with a 4.76 ERA with 7.9 strikeouts and 3.6 walks per nine innings.
Hill’s task is to hold down a Dodgers offense that entered the weekend leading the league in runs per game on the road and ranking second in the National League in both total home runs and home runs per game on the road.
With both veteran starting pitchers having struggles this season, this game will be decided by the cores that surround them and with the Dodgers bullpen stepping up, it will earn Lynn and the team a win on Sunday.
The Play: Dodgers -120