Chad Billingsley (5-0, 2.21) vs. Barry Zito (0-2, 3.99).
COMMENTS: Did you get a chance to take a break from Mannymania (the sad kind, not the happy kind)? Good, because it's time to start refocusing on the team. Last night was a bummer, but the bullpen was overdue for a hiccup (okay, a pukefest) after such a smooth stretch.
If there were ever a time for Billingsley to cement his status as the Dodgers' ace and stopper, tonight would be it. Chad the Brave represents stability and consistency—everything these past two days haven't been. Seven strong innings would indeed be a soul-soother.
Zito continues to improve with each start, so he may match Billingsley pitch for pitch. But our bats are primed, fresh off a nine-run night. Russell Martin (2-for-3 with an RBI) and maybe Casey Blake (a home run short of the cycle) are heating up. Now we just need Rafael Furcal (0-for-5 with 3 K's) to get off the ice.
Times are tough for Dodger fans, and you know Giants fans would just love to crap in the punch bowl this weekend. It's already a pity the team's 50th-anniversary celebration of the 1959 World Champion Dodgers was overshadowed last night. Here's hoping the 2009 Dodgers' new winning streak gets the attention it deserves.