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The month of September is two-thirds over, and we can smell the playoff baseball of October just on the horizon. These times are always exciting because teams in tight divisional races either become greater when the lights brighten or lose the steam that they initially possessed. Friday night will be an NL West divisional showdown between the first-place Los Angeles Dodgers and the last place San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium in the temperate Los Angeles. Padres left Eric Lauer will go toe-to-toe with Dodgers left-hander Rich Hill starting at 7:10 PM Pacific time. Even though the Padres are out of the playoff race, they’re still going to come into Los Angeles with a sense of pride to protect. LA has every reason in the world to cop a W on Friday night, because the Colorado Rockies are breathing down their necks at second place by a margin of only 2. 5 games. Eric Laur is a promising rookie for the Rockies who has put up a 5-7 record on the year with a 4. 74 ERA.
The Rockies management actually moved his start up so they can see how he fares against one of baseball’s hottest teams. He has had five days off his since his last start, so he should be walking out onto the mound with a fresh arm. Rich Hill, on the other hand, has been a veteran rock in the Dodger’s rotation. He sports a 9-5 record on the year with a 4. 02 ERA. Lately, he has been getting a ton of run support from his boys on the bench, with an average of 9. 8 runs scored behind him in his last five starts. They could surely carry that trend into the night on Friday, as their bats, particularly Yasiel Puig’s, have been red-hot and powerful. Puig has been a one-man show for the Boys in Blue. He basically crushed the Rockies with his own two hands with his unbelievable and timely home run hitting. He has six freakin’ dingers in his last 18 at-bats, including a pinch-hit game-winning home run on Wednesday night to complete the sweep of their division rivals. His confidence is brimming, and it’s bleeding into the jovial spirits of the goofballs in the dugout. We will see if Yasiel has more magic in store for Los Angeles on Friday, or if the Padres can be a roadblock in LA’s quest for a division crown.
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