MLB on Sling TV: Arms Races in Division Battles

Aug 03, 2015 by Robb Todd


The Dodgers and the Yankees held opposite philosophies at the trade deadline.

Los Angles swung a mega-deal that involved three teams and 13 players that included two starting pitchers who will enter the Dodgers’ rotation immediately.

New York added a mediocre bat to its bench.

Part of the reason for the Yankees lack of movement before the deadline was their unwillingness to part with phenom Luis Severino, who is expected to make his major league debut Wednesday in the Bronx against the Red Sox. The Yankees are betting that he’s as much an answer to their starting pitching woes as Cole Hamels, David Price or Johnny Cueto would have been.

“He’s moved really fast through the system and obviously had a lot of success,” Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman said of Severino. “So we’ll see what the next step for this youngster is.”

It’s a big, risky bet. Despite having a decent lead in the A.L. East over the Blue Jays, who have been lingering around the .500 mark, Toronto pushed all the chips into the middle of the table and acquired shortstop Troy Tulowitzki and Price, who immediately becomes their ace.

If Severino doesn’t deliver, the Yankees have no way to replace Michael Pineda, who hit the disabled list with arm trouble.

For the Yankees, acquiring outfielder Dustin Ackley seems more like an afterthought. For the Dodgers, Alex Wood and Matt Latos flesh out an already-excellent rotation.

“To sit here having addressed the biggest areas of need for us in terms of rotation and bullpen, while adding future pieces and preserving the top guys in our farm system, that’s a really good outcome,” Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said.

The Dodgers play twice on Sling TV this week, both times against Pittsburgh, a potential playoff opponent. Los Angeles is expected to send Clayton Kershaw to the mound Friday. The incredible lefty has thrown 37 straight scoreless innings and is chasing the record set in 1988 when another Dodgers ace—Orel Hershiser—went 59 without surrendering a run.

The Pirates also play the Cubs on Sling TV Monday night. The Cubs play twice this week on Sling TV, including a Sunday game against the Giants.

Remember them? The Giants? They won the World Series last season. And three of the past five. They’re still pretty good, too.

*All times eastern. Projected starters as of Sunday. Some games subject to regional blackout.

Monday, August 3
Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh, 7pm (ESPN)

Jon Lester vs Francisco Liriano

Wednesday, August 5
Boston at New York Yankees, 7pm (ESPN)

Steven Wright vs Luis Severino

Friday, August 7
Los Angeles Dodgers at Pittsburgh, 7pm (ESPN)

Clayton Kershaw vs Gerrit Cole

Sunday, August 9
San Francisco at Chicago Cubs, 2:20pm (TBS)

Jake Peavy vs Jake Arrieta

Los Angeles Dodgers at Pittsburgh, 8pm (ESPN)

Alex Wood vs Francisco Liriano

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