The Elias Sports Bureau notes that the Julio Teheran-Hyun-Jin Ryu matchup is the 11th between rookie starters in postseason history. The home team has won eight of the 10 games and the performance of the home starters (5-2, 3.60 ERA) far outdid that of the visiting ones (1-5, 7.79).
What else should you know heading into this game?
The value of Game 3
Over the previous ten postseasons (2003-2012), 15 best-of-five Division Series were tied through two games. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Game 3 winner won 14 of those 15 series (93 percent). The only team in that group to win the series after losing Game 3 was the Cardinals, who ousted the Phillies in the 2011 NLDS.
Braves have an odd history in Game 3s
2. The Braves have lost each of their last four Game 3s in LDS play. That’s tied for the longest such 7losing streak since Major League Baseball implemented the Division Series in 1995.
Only the Twins lost more consecutive Game 3s with six. The Braves last win in a Game 3 took place on Oct. 5, 2002, when Greg Maddux beat the Giants, 10-2 in the NLDS. The Braves lost that series in five games.
Hyun-Jin Ryu stats to know
Ryu closed the season strong, with a 2.57 ERA, 58 strikeouts and only eight walks in his last 11 starts. His record in that span was 6-5, partly because the Dodgers supported him with two runs or fewer in six of his last seven starts.
Ryu benefited from pitching at Dodger Stadium. His 2.32 home ERA was eighth-best in the majors.
Ryu is what is known as a reverse-split pitcher—meaning one who fares better against hitters who hit from the opposite side of the arm with which he throws. Right-handed batters have a .245 batting average and .633 OPS against him. Lefties have the better numbers- .270 and .738.
Ryu will be the first pitcher born in South Korea to start a postseason game. Four players who were born in South Korea have played in at least one postseason game: Hee Seop Choi, Shin-Soo Choo, Byung-Hyun Kim and Chan Ho Park.
Julio Teheran stats to know
Teheran had a 2.96 ERA in his first 22 starts, but had a 3.88 ERA in his last eight starts. After a three-start stretch in which he walked 11 in 19 innings, Teheran ended the season by not walking anyone in any of his last three starts.
Teheran’s key pitch is his slider, which could be described as “hit or miss.” Opponents missed on 37 percent of their swings against it, an above-average rate for a starting pitcher. But when hitters hit it, they hit it far. Teheran allowed nine homers with the pitch, tied for third-most among major league pitchers.
One thing that Dodgers will have to be wary off. Teheran led the majors with eight pickoffs in 2013, one more than Clayton Kershaw. Word has gotten around on Teheran’s pickoff skill. He only allowed one stolen base in his last 14 starts of the season.
Hanley mashing the ball
Hanley Ramirez has four extra-base hits through the first two games for the Dodgers. The Braves don't have many answers for Ramirez. He's 22-for-51 with six homers against pitchers on the Braves postseason roster.
Ramirez is only two shy of the Dodgers record for most extra-base hits in a postseason series, a mark shared by Duke Snider (six in the 1952 World Series) and Steve Garvey (six in the 1978 NLCS).