Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman responded to his All-Star Game snub by going on an offensive tear.
Freeman is 11-for-13 with a walk, a hit by pitch, four RBIs and four runs in his last three games.
Freeman will try to stay hot on Thursday night when the Dodgers face the host St. Louis Cardinals in the finale of their three-game series.
“You get into those little zones where you get pitches to hit and you don’t miss them,” Freeman said. “You just try to ride it as long as you possibly can because it’s going to end soon.”
The Cardinals won the series opener 7-6 on Tuesday, and the Dodgers answered with a victory by the same score on Wednesday for their 12th victory in 14 games.
The Dodgers will start left-hander Tyler Anderson (9-1, 3.15 ERA) in Thursday’s series finale.
Anderson received a no-decision on Friday after allowing three runs on five hits in seven innings against the Chicago Cubs in his last start.
“Tyler being able to get us that last inning, that seventh inning, was huge,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “Another quality start for Tyler, and (it) gave us a chance to use the right guys in the pen.”
Anderson cruised the first time through the Cubs’ batting order, then struggled during his second turn.
“I thought the changeup was really good early,” Anderson said. “I think my fastball command was better today than it had been in the last couple. Later, they were kind of sitting changeup and I was throwing a little more middle of the plate than I did early. Sometimes games like that happen.”
Anderson is 0-2 with a 7.90 ERA in three career starts against the Cardinals.
Cardinals right-hander Dakota Hudson (6-5, 4.00) will get the start on Thursday.
Hudson scattered two hits and walked two over six scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Philadelphia Phillies on Saturday.
The Cardinals lost that game 1-0, but Hudson’s progress was the silver lining. In his previous three starts, he allowed 14 runs, 22 hits and seven walks.
“We’re trying to win,” Hudson told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “I’m not trying to hand games away. I’m trying to add some consistency to the rotation and pull my weight.”
Hudson changed his slider grip to record a better change-of-pace complement to his fastball.
“It forced them not to be able to sit on one pitch,” he said. “The ability to vary speeds was very big for me.”
Hudson is 1-0 with a 1.08 ERA in four career outings (one start) against the Dodgers.
The Cardinals made a bullpen adjustment Wednesday, activating Drew VerHagen from the 15-day injured list after he had been sidelined with a shoulder impingement. Matthew Liberatore returned to Triple-A Memphis to make room for VerHagen.
With the Dodgers starting a left-hander, the Cardinals could bring outfielder Tyler O’Neill off the 10-day injured list. He has been sidelined by a hamstring strain and a wrist contusion.
“My wrist is definitely feeling good,” O’Neill said. “I think everyone has been surprised with how quick the turnaround has been, but thankfully the recovery process has been pretty quick this time.”
–Field Level Media