The Los Angeles Dodgers and Pittsburgh Pirates will wrap up their brief three game series on Wednesday evening. The Dodgers will be going for a sweep, after winning the first two games of the series. Pittsburgh will be wrapping up a long 9 game road trip on Wednesday as well, and have gone 4-4 on the trip so far.
For much of the first half of the season, the Pirates looked like a better team than the Dodgers, but those roles have now shifted. It appears that the Pirates will become sellers at the trade deadline, while Los Angeles will be looking to add pieces to their already great team. The Los Angeles Dodgers are -205 over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.
Dodgers Closing in on Diamondbacks
After a very rough first two months of the season, the Dodgers have finally started to play with some consistency. It looked like the Arizona Diamondbacks were going to run away from the pack in the National League West, but the Dodgers have closed the gap quickly. The Diamondbacks lead is now down to just 1.5 games over Los Angeles. The Dodgers were the preseason favorite, and it looks like the division will be theirs soon.
Veteran Matt Kemp has been the offensive star for the Dodgers in 2018. Kemp is having the best season of his career, and leads Los Angeles in most offensive categories. Kemp’s .323 batting average ranks near the top of the National League, as does his 55 runs batted in. The Dodgers were hoping that Kemp could be a serviceable player for them this season, but he’s putting up MVP numbers.
Lack of Power Hurting Pirates
The Pirates traded away Andrew McCutcheon this winter, but they thought that they had players to fill the void on the roster. Pittsburgh has really struggled to hit home runs this season, and their run total has taken a huge hit from that. Gregory Polanco is the only Pirates player that has reached double digits in home runs. The Pirates must find a way to hit for more power in the second half of the season.
Young right hander, Joe Musgrove, was originally supposed to make the start for Pittsburgh in the series finale. Musgrove went to the disabled list on Tuesday. Now, Clay Holmes will get the start for the Pirates, and face a red hot Los Angeles Dodgers lineup.
Dodgers Win 4th of July Matchup
The Pirates hope that they will be the ones providing the fireworks during this 4th of July matchup. Pittsburgh has a very young roster, but they have enough talent to compete for a playoff spot. If the Pirates find a way to hit more home runs, they wins will start to follow.
Los Angeles has been baseball’s best team since the middle of May. The Dodgers looked buried in the National League West standings, but are now right back near the top. Rich Hill makes the start for the Dodgers, and he should have his way with the Pirates lineup.Take the Dodgers -205 over the Pirates on Wednesday.