Dodgers start Derek Lowe, RHP (5-5, 3.32) vs. Paul Maholm, LHP (2-7, 5.35).
Dodgers: 33-23 (T-1st place NL West (with AZ and SD), W1)
Pirates: 24-32 (T-3rd place NL Central, 7.5 GB, L1)
From Dodgers.com, the scouting report on the starters:
Dodgers: With a little more run support, Lowe would be right there with Brad Penny for the team victory lead. He shut down the Nationals over seven innings in his most recent start, which gave him eight quality starts out of 12. The Dodgers have scored seven runs in his five losses and he's allowed only six runs in his five wins.
Pirates: Maholm lasted more than seven innings for the second straight outing and kept the Pirates in the game in his last start Wednesday against the Padres. He was effective because he threw strikes early in the count to put the hitters in a hole and keep his pitch count low.
Jim Tracy clearly has it in for the Dodgers, scheduling a night game in Pittsburgh before the Dodgers have to fly to San Diego for tomorrow's inter-divisional matchup. Meanwhile, the Padres and Diamondbacks, who share the NL West lead with the Dodgers, get the day off (and the Giants, who play vs. Philly today, are almost done with their morning game as we write this). Hopefully last night's come-from-behind victory doesn't leave lasting negative impacts from Takashi Saito's hamstring injury, and the Dodgers can walk out of the Steel City this evening with a series win, nor further injuries, and a maybe even a case of Yuengling beer for the flight home (only a half-a-beer per Dodger allowed; let's stay safe).
The lineup, from ITD (MLB) (who by the way has a long post asking people to stop being negative about the Dodgers--okay, well how about you go (a) buy a power bat; (b) fix the still-flawed parking system; (c) make concessions easier and quicker to purchase, if not less expensive; (d) FREE JAMES LONEY; and (e) play a little bit more Nancy Bea, and maybe we'll be less negative. Oh wait, too late.)
Clark, LF (.714 average in his career off Maholm)
Abreu gets a start, hitting right above Clark. Gonzo gets a rest.