The Rattle Take: Brace yourselves; it will be a difficult weekend.
Humberto Castellano's night was a long one. Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman each doubled to start the game. Freeman was scored on a Will Smith single, giving the Dodgers a 2-0 lead. The Dodgers pounded out five hits and drew a walk in the second to a four-run inning, including a Freddie Freeman home run.
Castellanos ended his night after four innings with six earned runs, allowed ten hits, and had a single strikeout. After Castellanos hit the showers, the D-Backs bullpen didn't help much either. The relievers allowed eight more runs between Frias, Smith, and Hager. The game ended for Arizona with a 14-1 loss, being Walker the only to get one with a home run blast to left field.
It is pretty early, but the Diamondbacks are doing much better with the offense coming along. The team is slashing .216/.299/.381 with a .680 OPS. Of course, it could be better, but comparing it to how the group started is a massive improvement. But, again, this weekend series might be brutal to watch. The Dodgers are bringing big guns to start the games in Ryan Pepiot (RHP, 3.86 ERA), Tony Gonsolin (RHP, 1.62 ERA), and Tyler Anderson (LHP, 3.30 ERA). The D-Backs are hitting .219/.307/.398 against right-handers and .208/.277/.338 against lefties.
The Dodgers, on the other hand, Los Angeles is ranking number four in batting average (.254), number one in on-base percentage (.340), slugging (.429), and in OPS (.769). Based on the Baseball Reference website projections, the Dodgers have a 46.2% chance of reaching the World Series and a 33.5% chance of winning it all. In World Series victory probabilities, the following two teams after the Dodgers are the Astros (11.0%) and the Yankees (9.7%). Translating that Arizona has not a chance against "The Boys in Blue."
Let's take a look at Friday's starter, Madison Bumgardner. The long-time starting pitcher has faced the Dodgers for 239.1 innings, has allowed 213 hits, 30 homers, 55 walks, and has a winning percentage of .484 in 38 starts. Yet, even MadBum looks questionable against this year's dominant Dodgers squad. On Saturday, Meryll Kelly is scheduled to start. Then, for the rubber match, Zach Davies.
The Diamondbacks are a way better team than expected. Even if he is flying out a lot, the power has a comeback for Walker; Smith is putting the ball in play; Varsho, WOW! Peralta is consistent; Marte is getting better; Thomas has a case to stay in the bigs; Luplow is a spark to the offense.