The Arizona Diamondbacks have the best record in the National League, have not lost a series all season and could end up playing the revenge card when they open a brief two-game series at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
The Los Angeles Dodgers did manage to split a four-game series at Arizona last week, the only slight blemish on Arizona's impressive run to open the season. The Diamondbacks have 10 series victories after winning two-of-three from the World Series champion Houston Astros over the weekend and just that one series tie to the Dodgers.
The Diamondbacks have also opened the season 23-11, their second-best record after 34 games in franchise history. They had a 24-10 mark after 34 games in 2000.
With all that success, the Diamondbacks were trying to not make too much out of their most recent series triumph over the Astros.
"It was a good test against a good ballclub and I think we passed (the test)," Arizona's Daniel Descalso told reporters after Sunday's victory.
This week's makeup quiz in L.A. opens Tuesday with right-hander Zack Godley (4-2, 3.41 ERA) facing the Dodgers, carrying his own personal sense of revenge into the outing. Godley gave up six runs while walking six at Dodger Stadium on April 15 in one of his two defeats on the year. In 11 career appearances against the Dodgers (seven starts), Godley is 2-3 with a 3.50 ERA.
The Dodgers are just glad to be back home again after a miserable three-city road trip to San Francisco, Phoenix, and Monterrey, Mexico, this past weekend, where they faced the San Diego Padres. The Dodgers went 4-7 on the journey, losing more than games in the process.
Corey Seager, Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ruy and Yasiel Puig all went on the disabled list since the last time the Dodgers had a home game. In at least a bit of good news, left-hander Rich Hill (1-1, 6.00) will come off the DL to start on Tuesday after dealing with a cracked fingernail and an infection.
In 10 career starts against Arizona, Hill has won just once, going 1-6 with a 5.50 ERA.
Hill will have his hands full again against a Diamondbacks club that is 17-1 when scoring four or more runs, the best mark in that category in baseball. Arizona has also won 12 consecutive games when scoring four or more runs and 20 of its last 21 going back to last season.
"It doesn't get any easier," manager Dave Roberts said, according to the Los Angeles Times. "We've got a team that is smelling blood, in Arizona, playing well. We're chasing those guys."
The Dodgers, winners of the last five consecutive NL West titles, will enter the series eight games behind the first-place Diamondbacks in the standings.
And facing a tough Arizona offense is only part of the Dodgers' problems. The Diamondbacks lead the NL with a 3.05 ERA, while their relievers lead all of baseball with a 2.19 mark. And closer Brad Boxberger is a perfect 11-for-11 in save opportunities.
The Diamondbacks are 7-3 against the Dodgers this season, including a 2-1 record at Dodger Stadium.