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Game 26 Preview: Tampa Bay Rays vs Los Angeles Dodgers

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Today's Starting Pitchers:

2016 W L IP GS ERA FIP K% BB% HR AVG BABIP fWAR GS
Alex Wood 1 2 28 5 4.82 3.53 16.7% 9.5% 1 .277 .333 0.5 5
Drew Smyly 1 3 34.2 5 2.60 3.18 32.0% 4.7% 5 .149 .173 0.8 5

Drew Smyly has been fantastic this year so far for the Rays and actually tied David Price's record for strikeouts in the month of April during his last outing -- although that would be quickly shattered by Chris Archer's performance the night after -- however, he has had a problem with the home run ball, particularly to the Blue Jays. He has given up five home runs this season, with two coming in his last start, and they've all been against the Toronto offense, as he has three others where he's kept the ball in the park.

Nonetheless, even with the two homers, Smyly still delivered six innings, giving up just the two runs on two hits (both homers) while he walked one and struck out eight, somehow picking up his already third loss of the year.

Alex Wood Scouting Report:

So far in 2016, young Alex Wood has failed to stay consistent for the Dodgers as he has put up two excellent starts but has combined those with three terrible ones. His last time out was one of the good ones however as he went seven innings, gave up just a run on five hits while he walked one and struck out nine. The walk and strikeout numbers are encouraging for him as that has been one of his weaknesses thus far.

His arsenal:

PITCH AVG. VELO. FREQUENCY vs LHB vs RHB
Fastball 91.9 MPH

0.5% vs LHB

***

0.5% vs RHB

Rarely throws Rarely throws
Sinker 91.2 MPH

55.5% vs LHB

***

56.6% vs RHB

Buries it in the bottom of the zone, going from corner to corner Low and away in the zone
Curveball 82.5 MPH

27.2% vs LHB

***

23.1% vs RHB

Low and away from the zone Low and inside, hooks it off the plate
Change-up 84.6 MPH

16.6% vs LHB

***

19.6% vs RHB

Stays middle-in Tends to stay in the bottom of, or below the zone, usually away

His splits:

2016 TBF wOBA AVG OBP SLG HR K% BB%
vs LHB 34 .452 .393 .500 .536 0 14.7% 14.7%
vs RHB 92 .274 .238 .304 .301 1 17.4% 7.6%
HOME 52 .253 .208 .269 .292 1 23.1% 7.7%
AWAY 74 .370 .328 .419 .413 0 12.2% 10.8%

Some observations from above

  • Wood has really struggled against LHB, whether it be walking them or allowing hits. So he has shown reverse splits this year in a SSS, but that goes against his career rates as usually does much better against LHB.
  • Puig is good

Today's Lineups

LOS ANGELES DODGERS TAMPA BAY RAYS
Enrique Hernandez - LF Logan Forsythe - 2B
Yasiel Puig - RF Brandon Guyer - CF
Adrian Gonzalez - 1B Evan Longoria - 3B
Justin Turner - DH Steve Pearce - 1B
Howie Kendrick - 2B Steven Souza - RF
Trayce Thompson - CF Corey Dickerson - DH
Yasmani Grandal - C Desmond Jennings - LF
Corey Seager - SS Tim Beckham - SS
Charlie Culberson - 3B Curt Casali - C
Alex Wood - LHP Drew Smyly - LHP