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The Dodgers' theme for this season, as proclaimed on their website, is "A WHOLE NEW BLUE." With Magic Johnson as the face of a new ownership group, the team is trying to distance itself from the McCourt regime, and spirits were high heading into this season. But so far the Dodgers have struggled. Don Mattingly's team is 7-8 and has lost four in a row, including a three-game sweep by the visiting San Diego Padres this week. You already know all about the Zack Greinke brawl, but -- unless you have him on your fantasy team -- you may not have noticed how badly Matt Kemp is slumping. The star center fielder, who signed an eight-year, $160 million contract after the 2011 season, is bating just .182 (10-for-55) with zero homers and five RBIs. This is a guy who two years ago batted .324 and finished a homer shy of a 40-40 season. "There's nothing wrong with me," Kemp told the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, when he was left out of the starting lineup. "Everything is fine. It's just hitting, man. I just need to hit. That's it."
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Rick Scuteri, USA TODAY Sports
L.A. is no longer "Mannywood" but there's a new No. 99 in Dodger blue worth keeping an eye on. Hyun-Jin Ryu, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound lefty from Incheon, South Korea, has impressed in his first three starts in the states. And he starts tonight's series opener against Jason Hammel. Ryu, 26, is 2-1 with a 2.89 ERA and 20 strikeouts vs. just three walks. He struck out nine in six innings of work in his last start Saturday in Arizona and is on the early short list for NL Rookie of the Year consideration.
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The Orioles kick off an interleague series against an unfamiliar opponent tonight. The O's haven't faced the Los Angeles Dodgers since 2004, and the teams haven't played here in Baltimore since 2002. With that in mind, here are five things you should know heading into this weekend's three-game set.