The Los Angeles Dodgers are scheduled to open spring training play Friday, nearly three weeks later than originally planned, facing the Milwaukee Brewers at their Camelback Ranch – Glendale facility in Arizona.
The Dodgers were initially scheduled to begin spring training play Feb. 26 but were not able to because of Major League Baseball’s lockout of its players. The lockout ended when the players union and owners reached a new collective bargaining agreement.
Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to start for the Dodgers against non-roster left-hander Ethan Small for the Brewers. Kershaw’s 2021 season ended Oct. 1 when he was removed after allowing three runs and five hits in 1 2/3 innings against the Brewers. The left-hander was placed on the injured list the next day because of left forearm discomfort, missing the postseason.
The Brewers selected Small in the first round of the 2019 draft, the 28th overall pick, out of Mississippi State. He has not pitched in a regular-season MLB game.
The 1:05 p.m. game will be televised by Spectrum SportsNet LA with retired Dodgers first baseman Eric Karros making his debut as a Dodger broadcaster.
The Dodgers are scheduled to play in Southern California for the first time this year on April 3 in an exhibition Freeway Series game at Angel Stadium against the Los Angeles Angels, with the first game of 2022 at Dodger Stadium the following day against the Angels.
The Dodgers are scheduled to open the regular season April 8 at Colorado and play their home opener April 14 against the Cincinnati Reds.
Just like in 2021 when their season ended with a six-game loss to the eventual World Series champion Atlanta Braves in the National League Championship Series, the Dodgers are the favorite to win the World Series, according to FanGraphs.
The baseball statistics and analysis website conducted 20,000 simulations of the season, with the Dodgers winning the World Series in 18.7% of them. The Toronto Blue Jays are second at 12.1% and the Braves third at 10.2%.
FanGraphs projects the Dodgers will win a major-league best 97.7 games, and the National League West title by 10 games over the San Diego Padres. It also says the Dodgers have a 97.6% chance of qualifying for the expanded 12-team playoffs and an 80.4% chance of winning the National League West.