Ricky Nolasco hopes to keep his unbeaten streak intact when the Los Angeles Dodgers target a sixth straight win Tuesday in the second matchup of a three-game set against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.
Nolasco is 5-0 with a 1.64 earned run average in his last six starts and hasn't given up a run in each of his previous two outings. He threw eight scoreless innings of two-hit ball in a 2-0 win over Boston on Aug. 23, then kept the Chicago Cubs off the board through eight innings in last Wednesday's 4-0 triumph to improve to 6-1 in 10 starts with L.A.
The former Miami Marlin struck out 11 batters and yielded just three hits versus the Cubs and Los Angeles is 7-1 in his last eight starts. Nolasco has made 10 appearances (9 starts) against the Rockies, going 6-3 with a 4.82 ERA.
The NL West-leading Dodgers handed Colorado a 10-8 loss in Monday's series opener, as Andre Ethier finished 3-for-4 with a home run, three RBI and three runs scored. Juan Uribe and starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw both knocked in two runs and the latter picked up the win even though he was touched for five runs and a career-high 11 hits in five innings.
"It happens and hopefully I get these runs out of the way before it counts," Kershaw said of his shaky start.
Yasiel Puig had a hit and a run scored, and could miss Tuesday's game because of a right knee strain. Puig left Monday's game in the sixth inning and the injury isn't deemed serious for the rookie phenom.
The Dodgers recently acquired third baseman Michael Young from the Philadelphia Phillies and the veteran is expected to start Tuesday.
Colorado had won five of seven games until Monday's loss. The club blew a 3-1 lead early on and didn't get much help from starting pitcher Chad Bettis in his no-decision. Bettis gave up five runs in 4 2/3 innings and Jeff Manship was dealt the loss in relief, giving up three runs (2 earned).
"I wasn't efficient as I would've like today," Bettis said.
Once a contender in the NL wild card race, the Rockies are pretty much playing out the string. Jhoulys Chacin has been one of the few bright spots for the Rockies and will take the mound Tuesday.
Chacin is 4-2 in his last six decisions and is coming off a superb outing against San Francisco last Wednesday in which he struck out nine batters and allowed one hit and an unearned run over seven innings. In 26 starts this season, Chacin is 13-7 with a 3.08 ERA and owns an 8-5 record in 15 career games (14 starts) against the Dodgers.
Colorado and Los Angeles have split 14 meetings this season.