MILWAUKEE — After snapping their season-long five-game losing streak with a 5-4 victory Monday afternoon at Pittsburgh, the Los Angeles Dodgers will try to keep the momentum going when they open a three-game series Tuesday night against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
"It was resiliency," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. "We spotted them four in the first (inning), and (Scott Kazmir) goes out there and throws up four zeroes and we responded, put up a crooked number and found a way to win a baseball game."
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The Dodgers and Brewers met just over a week ago at Dodger Stadium, where Los Angeles took three of the four meetings. Only one of those, however, was a decisive victory: the Brewers posted an 8-6 win in the first contest, blew a 5-2 lead in third game before dropping a 10-6 decision and lost the other two by a single run.
Los Angeles will open the series behind rookie right-hander Julio Urias, who is still looking for his first major league victory but has recorded 21 strikeouts in 27 innings of work.
The 19-year-old phenom has recovered nicely from two rocky outings to start his career, posting a 2.33 ERA in his last four outings, covering 19 1/3 innings of work.
His best outing of the year came at the Brewers’ expense. Urias held Milwaukee scoreless for five innings, allowing a walk and five hits while striking out a career-high eight in the Dodgers’ 3-2 victory on June 17.
Urias will be on a short leash though, as the Dodgers try to manage his workload. He threw 80 innings all of last season and is at 68 already in 2016.
"We need him right now," Roberts told the Los Angeles Times prior to his last start. "These are valuable starts for our club, and so it makes sense for him to be here as long as he can be."
Urias would prefer to keep pitching but understands the decision is out of his control.
"The decision is the team’s," Urias said. "If the team tells me I’m going to take a break, I’ll be fine with that. If the team tells me I’m going to continue pitching, I’ll be prepared for that."
Milwaukee will counter with right-hander Chase Anderson, who hasn’t pitched since allowing seven runs in just 2 1/3 innings against the Dodgers on June 17.
Anderson was passed over the last time his turn came up in the rotation as the Brewers tried to take advantage of three off days in an eight-day span.
"We planned this," manager Craig Counsell said last week. "We decided he was a good guy to get a break. … With three off-days, it was a good time to give one of the starters a little rest."
He’ll be making his eighth career start against the Dodgers, who he saw regularly in his two seasons with the NL West-rival Arizona Diamondbacks. Anderson is 1-1 with a 5.05 ERA in seven previous starts with 38 strikeouts in 35 2/3 innings.
Among Dodgers regulars, Adrian Gonzalez has had the best success against Anderson, going 6-for-13 with a double and a home run.