Dodgers empty the bench against Pirates

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Sure, the team has only played twice so far and already got Tuesday off, but with the Dodgers playing this afternoon following a game last night manager Joe Torre has given regulars Manny Ramirez, Russell Martin, Andre Ethier, Casey Blake, and Blake DeWitt the day off.
That means Reed Johnson, Brad Ausmus, Garret Anderson, Jamey Carroll, and Ronnie Belliard are all in the lineup together against the Pirates, which might seem a little unfair to starter Chad Billingsley.
1 – Rafael Furcal, SS
2 – Reed Johnson, LF
3 – Matt Kemp – CF
4 – James Loney – 1B
5 – Ronnie Belliard – 3B
6 – Garret Anderson – RF
7 – Jamey Carroll – 2B
8 – Brad Ausmus – C
Billingsley doesn’t have anything close to the best possible offense or defense behind him, but then again playing the Pirates probably cancels all of that out and if Torre was really feeling generous towards a team that’s trying to get off to an unlikely 3-0 start after not having a winning season since 1992 he’d just go ahead and spot them a few runs.

Max Scherzer, with broken nose, strikes out 10 Phillies over seven shutout innings

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Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.

Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.

Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.

Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.