After their game was washed out on Monday, the Los Angeles Dodgers (17-12) and the Chicago Cubs (12-16) are set to kick off a three-game series with a split doubleheader on Tuesday. First pitch for the nightcap is scheduled for 7:40 pm ET from Wrigley Field.
The Dodgers come into this one on a bit of a slide. They lost three of four over the weekend to the Milwaukee Brewers and now sit in second in the N.L. West behind the San Francisco Giants. Even though Monday turned into an off day, the team still took a hit as it was announced starter Dustin May will undergo Tommy John surgery.
Over the weekend, the Cubs lost two of three to the Cincinnati Reds and now sit in last in the N.L. Central. On Sunday, they lost in extra innings 13-12. In the loss, the Cubs hit five home runs, including two from Kris Bryant.
In the second game of the doubleheader Tuesday, the Dodgers are the favorites despite playing on the road. They are -175 to win while the Cubs’ moneyline sits at +150.
Since it is a doubleheader, both the makeup game and Tuesday night’s regularly scheduled game will be seven inning contests.
The Dodgers will send ace Clayton Kershaw (4-2, 2.09 ERA) to the mound Tuesday evening. In his last outing against the Cincinnati Reds, Kershaw threw seven scoreless innings while striking out eight.
On the other side, the Cubs will send righty Adbert Alzolay (1-2, 4.71 ERA) to the bump to take on Kershaw. Alzolay is coming off of his first career quality start as he went six innings and struck out six against the Braves.
By The Numbers
Offensively, the Dodgers have been one of the best teams in baseball. They currently rank third in scoring averaging 5.10 runs per game. The Cubs rank 13th, averaging 4.61 runs per game.
Defensively, it is once again the Dodgers who have the big advantage. They rank third in the majors allowing opponents just 3.55 runs per game. The Cubs fall to 25th, allowing 5.11 runs per game.
Dodgers Look To Get Back To Winning Ways
After dropping three of four to the Brewers, the Dodgers are looking to get back into the win column and reclaim their division lead in a loaded N.L. West.
With Kershaw on the mound, the Dodgers may not need to score as many runs, but they have an offense that can put them up in a hurry.
Leading the way for Los Angeles is third baseman, Justin Turner. In 101 at bats, he is hitting .337/.415/.584 with a team-leading six home runs and 21 runs batted in.
In the last week, outfielder AJ Pollock has been on fire. He is hitting .333/.364/.810 with three home runs and ten runs batted in.
Cubs Trying To Pull Out Of The Cellar
The Cubs have put themselves in quite a hole early in the season and are looking to bounce back quickly. At 12-16 overall and 3-7 in the last ten games, the Cubs sit dead last in the division and are five games behind the first-place Brewers.
One shining light for the Cubs has been Kris Bryant. He is hitting like the Bryant of old with a slash line of .323/.405/.708 with nine home runs and 22 runs batted in.
In the last week, he has been even better, hitting .450/.522/1.050 with three home runs and six runs batted in.
Javier Baez has been a bit better in that time too. In his last 17 at bats, he is hitting .294/.263/.588 with a home run, triple and five runs batted in.
Dodgers And Kershaw Hard To Bet Against
The Cubs already have their hands full facing the Dodgers, but it is, even more, deflating with Kershaw on the mound.
Granted, if they hit like they did in Cincinnati on Sunday, they could have a chance, but it would be pretty challenging to do that against Kershaw. The Cubs are 8-7 at home, but the smarter bet is still on the Dodgers at -175.