Reds’ four-game winning streak on line vs. Dodgers

Cincinnati Reds right-hander Homer Bailey is one of two active pitchers in the major leagues with multiple no-hitters, but he would be satisfied with just a victory on Saturday night against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Bailey (0-5, 5.61 ERA) is scheduled to make his ninth start of the season for the Reds, who have lost in each of his previous eight appearances.

However, Cincinnati (12-27) should be buoyed by a season-long four-game winning streak, its longest since last June. The Reds have taken advantage of the reeling Dodgers to win the first two games of the series.

Los Angeles (16-22) returned home this week after a 4-7 road trip and have lost three of four in the homestand so far.

“It’s just not happening,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told reporters following a 6-2 loss to the Reds on Friday night. “Everyone, they’re all trying hard and it’s just not happening. Guys are getting on base and you’re waiting for that hit, that productive out, but right now for our guys, collectively, it’s just not happening.”

Overall, the Dodgers have dropped five of their past six games, with four of those losses coming against the Reds and San Diego Padres, owners of the two worst records in the NL.

“Keep grinding,” Roberts said. “That’s all we can do.”

Limiting home runs would likely help Bailey end his losing streak. He has surrendered nine home runs in his past four starts covering 19 2/3 innings.

Bailey told reporters after his latest defeat, a 7-6 loss to the New York Mets on Monday, that he’s focused on correcting mechanical flaws in his delivery that have affected the command of his fastball.

“I noticed a few things,” he said. “It’s going to take little bit of time to sort them out.”

Bailey gave up six runs on eight hits in four innings in that Monday game. But Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman told that he saw some positive signs during Bailey’s latest outing.

“We talk about velocity, sometimes we gauge how somebody feels by that,” he said. “The velocity was there, maybe better than it has been.”

Bailey has made 10 career starts against the Dodgers and is 4-4 with a 4.57 ERA.

His last outing against Los Angeles was one of the worst of his career. He gave up six runs and nine hits in 2 1/3 innings on Aug. 22, 2016, three weeks after returning from Tommy John surgery, and the Reds eventually lost 18-9.

Bailey is probably glad to see the Dodgers no longer have first baseman Adrian Gonzalez in their lineup. Gonzalez, in his first season with the Mets, is 13-for-27 in his career against Bailey with seven home runs.

Ross Stripling (0-1, 1.93) is scheduled to make his third start of the season on Saturday after coming out of the bullpen in 11 other games.

He made his last start Sunday and shut out the Padres over four innings in a 3-0 loss in Monterrey, Mexico.

Stripling has made just one appearance against the Reds in his career, throwing two innings of relief last June and giving up a two-run homer to catcher Devin Mesoraco in the 9-7 win by Los Angeles.

Mesoraco was traded earlier in the week for right-handed pitcher Matt Harvey, the starting pitcher for the Reds on Friday night. Harvey pitched four shutout innings, allowing just one hit, in his Cincinnati debut, and the Reds won the game.