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Kershaw to Be the Difference for the Dodgers Tonight

Friday features a full schedule of games in Major League Baseball, including the start of several key weekend series. Here’s a look at a few of the matchups slated for today.

Cubs Continue Road Trip In Arizona

The Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks will play the first game of their weekend series at Chase Field in Phoenix tonight. Chicago won their most recent series against the Padres in San Diego after losing five straight at Wrigley Field.

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The Diamondbacks have turned things around after an 11-12 start to the season and are now two games over .500 and just four games behind the first-place Dodgers in the NL West. After winning just 52 games last season, Arizona is happy with its current position.

After giving up 27 runs on their last homestand, the long trip to the west coast has been a relief for the Cubs. They wrapped up their series against the Padres with a dramatic 7-5 win on Wednesday as Alfonso Rivas hit a two-run single in the eighth inning to break the tie. The San Diego native and La Jolla Country Day School alumnus thrived in this series in front of his family and friends as he also homered in the second game of the series to lead Chicago.

Arizona will win at home to get to 5-2 on their current homestand.

Angels and A’s Begin Four-Game Set

The Los Angeles Angels and Oakland Athletics will match up for the first time this season on Friday night at RingCentral Coliseum. The Angels won their last series against Tampa Bay and looked great in the first two games, outscoring their opponents 23-3. Oakland also played great in their previous series against the Detroit Tigers, outscoring them 26-7 and shutting them out twice in five games while winning four.

The Angels have had a solid start and are a half-game behind the Houston Astros, who have won ten straight games in the AL West. They are third in the Majors with 4.97 runs per game and sixth in batting average, hitting .248.

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Oakland has won three straight but is at the bottom of the division with a 14-19 record, seven games behind Los Angeles. They also must face the potent Angels offense with Daulton Jeffries on the mound tonight. He’s 1-5 with a 5.22 ERA this season.

LA will get on the scoreboard early and take a big win tonight.

Phillies Look for Second Victory In LA

The Philadelphia Phillies and Los Angeles Dodgers will square off in the second game of their four-game series at Dodger Stadium. The visiting team held on to win in last night’s matchup when after leading by six runs, the Phillies let the Dodgers come back to tie the game at 7-7 but scored two runs in the ninth to get the win. Bryce Harper homered and drove in three runs for Philly in the victory.

The Phillies have one of the top offenses and are fifth in the league with a .249 batting average. They’re also third in OPS at .727 but are still two games below .500 and 6.5 games behind the New York Mets in the NL East standings.

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The Dodgers have the National League’s best record at 20-10, and their pitching has dominated all opponents this season with a 2.48 ERA to lead the Major Leagues.

The Dodgers get the win with Clayton Kershaw making the start tonight.

Erik is a writer and a sports nut who has had the good fortune to be able to experience a wide variety of world sports action up close and personal. He enjoys staying on top of the changing world of athletics and capitalizing on his writing skills to offer a unique take on what's going on in the ever-changing athletics ecosystem.

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