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St. Louis Cardinals (22-19) at Los Angeles Dodgers (26-19)
Tuesday, May 23 - 10:10 PM EST
Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, California
St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina has hit safely in 11 straight contests and carries a 16-game on-base streak into Tuesday's encounter with Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the opener of a three-game series at Chavez Ravine. Molina is batting a respectable .250 in his career versus the three-time National League Cy Young Award winner, however Kershaw has authored four scoreless outings in his last eight regular-season meetings with St. Louis.
While Molina was limited to a harmless single on Sunday, Randal Grichuk drove in a season-high four runs with a pair of doubles as the Cardinals snapped a four-game losing skid with an 8-3 victory over San Francisco. St. Louis opens a six-game road trip and looks to duplicate the success of its last trek away from Busch Stadium, as it erupted for 43 runs en route to back-to-back sweeps of Atlanta and Miami from May 5-10. Los Angeles' offense has cranked it up a notch with 32 runs in its last five games (4-1), including Adrian Gonzalez collecting his first three-hit performance this season to go along with three RBIs in Sunday's 6-3 triumph over the Marlins. Yasmani Grandal also had three hits for the fifth time in 16 games on Sunday and is batting a robust 25-for-60 in that stretch.
TV: 10 p.m. ET, ESPN, FSN Midwest (St. Louis), SportsNet LA
PITCHING MATCHUP: Cardinals RH Lance Lynn (4-2, 2.78 ERA) vs. Dodgers LH Clayton Kershaw (7-2, 2.15)
Lynn surrendered two homers for the second straight start last Tuesday to absorb his first loss since April 11 with a 6-3 setback versus Boston. The 30-year-old worked at least six innings for the fifth time in his last six trips to the mound, with St. Louis winning all but one of these outings. Lynn owns a 3-1 career mark in six starts versus the Dodgers, although his 1.52 WHIP leaves a bit to be desired.
Kershaw penned a brilliant performance in his last outing on Wednesday, scattering three hits over seven scoreless innings in a 6-1 victory at San Francisco. The 29-year-old fanned five in the outing and has seen his strikeout rate dip to 8.9 per nine innings this season. Kershaw has fared well against St. Louis in the regular season, posting a 6-5 career mark with a 3.18 ERA in 15 outings, as opposed to an 0-4 record in the playoffs.
1. Los Angeles INF Logan Forsythe (toe) is expected to be activated from the disabled list prior to the game to play at third base until Justin Turner (hamstring) returns to the team.
2. St. Louis 2B Kolten Wong, who has hit safely in 18 of his last 21 contests, likely will return to the lineup after sitting out one game with discomfort around his left elbow.
3. Dodgers 2B Chase Utley has 12 hits and seven RBIs in his last 11 contests as he attempts to rebound from a horrific start to the season.
PREDICTION: Dodgers 3, Cardinals 1