The World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers will look to continue their early season dominance Thursday on Jackie Robinson Day as they search for a second consecutive series sweep.
The annual celebration, on the date of Robinson’s major-league debut in 1947, is especially relevant in Los Angeles, an area where Robinson grew up before he made his debut with the Dodgers when the team was located in Brooklyn.
The Dodgers will host the Colorado Rockies, a team that could use some inspiration. While the Dodgers enter on a five-game winning streak and have not lost at home this season, the Rockies have lost five straight and are 1-5 against Los Angeles.
The latest Dodgers victory over the Rockies came Wednesday in a 4-2 decision that was backed by home runs from Justin Turner and rookie Zach McKinstry. It was a rare bumpy ride for a Dodgers starter as Dustin May lasted just 4 1/3 innings.
With 10 victories in their first 12 games, the Dodgers will send left-hander Julio Urias to the mound in the series finale. The World Series hero, who earned the final seven outs of the team’s Game 6 clinching victory last October, has continued his postseason success into April.
Urias (2-0, 2.84 ERA) gave up just one run on three hits over seven innings in his first start of the season, a victory at Colorado on April 4. He wasn’t as sharp Saturday when he gave up three runs on nine hits over 5 2/3 innings of a victory against the Washington Nationals.
The Dodgers were carried by their offense that day with nine runs on nine hits and seven walks in the 9-5 win. Urias knew where the credit belonged and he will hope for even more Thursday night.
“It’s incredible,” Urias said of the team’s succession of quality hitters. “It’s a blessing not to have to face them because we know how good this lineup is. It’s from one through nine, and the guys on the bench are waiting for their moment to do their jobs.”
After going 3-0 during the shortened 2020 season, Urias has not lost a decision in the regular season since August 2019. In 11 career appearances (eight starts) against the Rockies, he is 1-1 with a 5.01 ERA.
The Rockies were competitive Wednesday but still fell on a night when manager Bud Black was ejected for arguing balls and strikes. Black will hope for a better night when he sends left-hander Austin Gomber (0-2, 2.89) to the mound.
Gomber gave up just one hit to the Dodgers on April 4 in his Rockies debut but allowed seven walks while taking the loss. He had another one-hit outing against the San Francisco Giants on Friday but walked another four and Colorado fell 3-1.
“I thought it was a really good start,” Gomber said about facing the Giants. “I’m trying to keep it to less than one baserunner an inning. I threw 6 1/3 (innings) and had four walks and one hit … but I still gave up only two runs. So we were in the game.”
In three career starts against the Dodgers, Gomber is 0-2 with an 8.18 ERA and has walked 12 in 11 innings with nine strikeouts.
–Field Level Media