Originally posted on Dodgers Rumors  |  Last updated 7/4/12



By SBRForum.com
What does it mean when a team scores as many runs in one game as it had in its previous eight games combined? Well, it could mean a couple of things. On the one hand it might mean that team exploded and lit up the scoreboard , and on the other it might mean that team has been struggling mightily recently with its bats.
These situations can be tricky to decipher, and even more so for the average baseball fan. Fortunately for you, we are here to break down this matchup and provide our free MLB picks and predictions for this showdown. Will the Dodgers bats continue to crack, or will pitching rule the day keeping the scoreboards dim?
Unfortunately for the LA Dodgers, the truth lies with the latter of those propositions.
LA just salvaged one game from a four-game weekend set vs. the New York Mets with an 8-3 victory Sunday. The Dodgers only got seven hits Sunday but were the recipients of five bases on balls and the beneficiaries of three New York errors.
That win came after losing by scores of 3-2, 9-0 and 5-0 Friday, Saturday and Sunday. In fact, LA, fading badly recently with MVP candidate Matt Kemp on the shelf, has been shut-out five times over its last seven games.
The Dodgers are now 21-23 without Kemp in the lineup this season.
So heading into this week's play Los Angeles, at 44-36, sits in second place in the NL West, a game behind first-place San Francisco.
The Dodgers now host the NL Central-leading Cincinnati Reds for a three-game series beginning Monday night, then head to Phoenix for four games with the resurgent Diamondbacks starting Thursday.
This will be the first meeting this season between LA and its former NL West rivals, the Reds, who come into this series having just split four games in San Fran.
With Clayton Kershaw picking up the win Sunday the Dodgers will throw Chad Billingsley Monday, Chris Capuano Tuesday and Aaron Harang Wednesday against Homer Bailey, All-Star snub Johnny Cueto and Mike Leake for Cincy.
LA might catch a break in that Reds slugger Joey Votto tweaked a knee Saturday, missed Sunday's game and is questionable for Monday and beyond..
Looking ahead the Dodgers lead the season series with Arizona three games to two. Nathan Eovaldi will start that series opener for LA Thursday, before the rotation turns back to Kershaw Friday.
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