Los Angeles Dodgers (85-34 SU, 67-52 RL, 56-59-4 O/U) vs Detroit Tigers (53-67 SU, 57-63 RL, 65-49-6 O/U)
When: 4:05 PM EDT, Saturday, August 19, 2017
Where: Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan
Lines: Los Angeles -143/ Detroit +133
A little interleague MLB action this afternoon as the Los Angeles Dodgers will invade Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan to rumble with the Detroit Tigers in game two of their two-game series. The Dodgers are 14-3 against the AL this year, but the Tigers have won their last five home games in this series. Pitching Probables: The Dodgers will trot out Hyun-Jin Ryu (4-6, 3.63 ERA) and he will be opposed by Michael Fulmer (10-10, 3.78 ERA).
Dodgers Look To Stay Hot In The Motor City
The Dodgers have been hot all season as they continue to chase history. The Dodgers have 85 wins on the year and are on pace for 115.7 wins and that is just below the MLB record of 116 wins, which was set by the Cubs in 1906 and the Mariners in 2001. It will be close and there is the possibility of the Dodgers resting players down the stretch as they will have little to play for over the last two weeks or so of the season. The Dodgers came into this series having won their last four in a row and 19 of their last 22. They are also 50-8 in their last 58 games and have one two-game losing streak over that stretch. They have a strong offense, great starting pitching and the 2nd best bullpen in the league, plus they are above average on defense. This team is more complete than last year’s Cubs team that won it all. The Dodgers are 34-20 on the road and have scored 4.91 rpg and have allowed 3.56 rpg in those games. Taking the hill for the Dodgers in this one will be Hyun-Jin Ryu and he has gone 4-6 with a 3.63 ERA in 18 games (17 starts) on the year, including 1-0 with a 1.42 ERA in his last three starts and 2-4 with a 3.56 ERA in eight starts on the road. In his career, he has gone 7–3 with a 2.35 ERA in 12 starts in August and 11-7 with a 3.77 ERA in 22 day starts, plus he is 3-3 with a 4.47 ERA in 10 interleague starts, including 0-1 with a 27.00 ERA in one start against the Tigers.
The Dodgers have been a very solid offensive team so far as they come in ranked 5th in the league in scoring, putting up 5.12 rpg, while also ranking 13th in hitting at .258 and 9th in homers with 173. On the mound they have been the best in the league so far as they come in with an ERA of 3.11, while also ranking 1st in WHIP at 1.12.
The Tigers Are Just Playing Out the String
The Detroit Tigers came into this series on Friday night sitting 13.5 games out of first in the American League Central and 8.5 games out of a wildcard slot in the American League. They really have little chance of making of the ground needed in either race to get in the playoffs, so they are just playing out the string and hoping that next year will be better. They could be up for this series, though, as they will be taking on the best team in baseball right now and every player loves that challenge. The Tigers have been struggling of late as they are just 2-10 in their last 12 games and they are a very mediocre at home, where they have gone 29-28 so far. For the Tigers to challenge for a playoff spot next year, they will need to fix their pitching, which is among the worst in the league. With their offense, even average pitching would have them competing for a playoff spot. The Tigers have averaged 5.47 rpg and have allowed 4.95 rpg at home for the year. Getting the nod for the Tigers will be Michael Fulmer and he has gone 10-10 with a 3.78 ERA in 22 starts on the year, including 0-3 with a 6.63 ERA in his last three starts and 6-3 with a 3.69 ERA in 11 starts here at home. Fulmer has gone 21-17 with a 3.40 ERA in 48 career starts overall, including 9-3 with a 2.71 ERA in 17 starts in the daytime and 2-1 with a 3.15 ERA in three interleague starts. This will be his first career start against the Dodgers.
The Tigers have been a good offensive team so far as they come in ranked 10th in the league in scoring, putting up 4.82 rpg, while also ranking 9th in hitting at .260 and 22nd in homers with 140. On the mound they have been poor so far this year as they come in ranked 29th in the league in ERA at 5.11, while also ranking 27th in WHIP at 1.45.
Los Angeles is:
- 12-1 in their last 13 vs. American League Central
- 30-8 in Ryu’s last 38 starts vs. a team with a losing record
- 4-9 in their last 13 interleague games
- 0-5 in their last five games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30
The Dodgers are the best team in the league, but they can expect a tough fight from a Detroit team that would love to hang a loss or two on them. Still, it will not happen here. Hyun-Jin Ryu has been pitching well of late as he has allowed two ERs or less in seven of his last eight starts and he has a 1.42 ERA in his last three starts. Let’s also note that he has the 2nd best pen in the league backing him up. The Tigers will send out Michael Fulmer in this one and he has had a decent year overall, but he is 0-4 with a 7.89 ERA in his last four starts and backing him up is by far the worst pen in the league. The Dodgers have the edge on offense, on the mound and a huge edge in the pen, so they should walk away with a solid win in this one.