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Dodgers pitching duo looking good heading into new season

Written by Andrew Scofield   
Monday, 06 April 2015 19:30
The Los Angeles Dodgers breathed a sigh of relief as their two best starting pitchers ended their preseason campaigns in promising form and without any injury issues, giving fans confidence that this rotation could have what it takes to be as strong as it was in 2014. Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke are both coming off incredible seasons in which they were crucial to the Dodgers success, and the duo are set to be as integral to the franchise's hopes in 2015, currently priced at 7/2 with Betfair to top the National League.

Reigning National League Cy Young and MVP award winner Kershaw is heading into the new season fresh from a solid three-inning showing against the Kansas City Royals, in which he allowed one run on a couple of hits with two walks and two strikeouts. This time last year, Kershaw was firing a remarkable 9.20 ERA in spring training only to struggle with a back injury during the early stages of the season. It's been a different story this spring, though, with Kershaw recording a 1.61 ERA during preseason and looking like the pitcher he was during a sensational 2014.
Dodgers pitching duo looking good heading into new season

Greinke, meanwhile, was given his final run-out of the spring in an minor league intrasquad scrimmage, striking out nine batters and allowing just five hits from his 85 pitches and conceding two solo home runs, retiring the final nine batters in order and striking out four in a row. The two-time All Star will be given an extra day rest to Kershaw, expected to start the Dodgers second game of the new season. The 31-year-old was one of the franchise's star performers last year, finishing the season with a career-high 17-8 record with a 2.71 ERA in his 32 starts, topping off a brilliant season by being named as the best fielding pitcher in the National League.

With Kershaw and Greinke on their roster, it's no surprise the Dodgers are being backed by so many to be major contenders in 2015, not only in terms of the National League but also in regards to the World Series. While there are some very talented teams in the race for the World Series this season, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly will know that this could be the franchise's best chance of ending their 27-year wait to win baseball's grand prize. This might not be the best all-round Dodgers team since that 1988 World Series side, when Kirk Gibson hit the game-winning run, but this pitching line-up could well be the franchise's strongest in a long time and one capable of taking this team all the way this year.
Last Updated on Monday, 06 April 2015 19:39
 
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