Chad Billingsley (12-10, 4.07) vs. Cesar Ramos (0-1, 1.69).
COMMENTS: The Dodgers need one win in their last five games, or one Colorado loss in its last six games, to clinch the NL West. 11 opportunities, and only one has to go the Dodgers' way. And this one won't be it.
No, not with Chad Billingsley on the mound, after his last performance which had a promising start (no ball left the infield until the fourth inning) turned into a disaster on one pitch (a game-tying Ryan Zimmerman three-run HR, leaving Bills with an ND). Not with Manny Ramirez and Casey Blake nursing sore hamstrings. Not with a closer who couldn't take advantage of a three-run lead gift-wrapped to him in the ninth inning on Sunday afternoon. Not with a team who lost three of four in PNC Park, putting them 3-4 on this roadtrip against the majors' worst. Not with a Padre pitcher making the first big-league start of his career.
Nope, it's not going to happen today. Might as well wait until tomorrow.
illustration: My Medicated Cartoon Life