MLB Expert Picks: Dodgers @ Cubs, 08:35 PM

Thursday night. At this very Wrigley Field 58 years ago, the Dodgers had recorded their latest 11-game road winning stretch. Back in Chicago, Dodgers are in a position to do it again on Thursday night against the Cubs. Though Los Angeles (57-49) had lost 3-0 against New York Yankees at home on Wednesday, they have already won 27 out of 34. The Dodgers also own a 2 1/2-game in the NL West. The LA Dodgers won total 15 out of 17 during that stretch away from home, and have averaged a mark of 7.0 runs while hitting an average .317 with two more than a dozen homers during a 10-game road winning stretch that has focused on their impressive turnaround.

The Dodgers were based in Brooklyn at the time when they last won 11 straight road games from April 14-May 10 in 1955. The Dodgers' last win of that run came 3-0 at Wrigley. Now, Los Angeles has recorded one win of its last five series on Chicago's North Side.  Scheduled starter for LA, Ricky Nolasco is 6-9 with 3.72 ERA is 4-2 with a 3.10 ERA in total eight starts against the Cubs franchise that had selected him in the fourth round of the 2001 draft. He gave up total three runs in seven innings of a 6-4 win over Chicago for Miami on April 28. One of the three veteran pitchers whom the Dodgers have acquired this month, Nolasco is 1-1 with a 3.13 ERA in total two pairs of starts with the club. Nolasco had allowed a pair of hits but walked two pairs in 5 2-3 innings of an 8-3, 10-inning win at Toronto last Wednesday. He'll clash with a Cubs team that has avoided a four-game sweep by Milwaukee with a 6-1 win on Wednesday. Despite having traded Alfonso Soriano and Matt Garza, Chicago finished July with 14-13 to have a record of its first winning month since going 15-10 last July.

Anthony Rizzo, who had had a homer of a pair of runs on Wednesday, is now 7 for 17 in total five games after going 0 for 12 in the earlier three. He had gone 1 for 2 with a double against Nolasco in April. Meanwhile, Teammate David DeJesus had gone 7 for 16 with half-dozen RBIs in the series. Starlin Castro had also homered on Wednesday. Castro is 6 for 15 against Nolasco. Chicago rookie Chris Rusin, with 1-0 and an ERA of 2.93 will try to offer the best of his 10 MLB starts when he takes the mound in the opener. The left-hander had given up three hits in total seven innings while not calculating the decision of a 1-0 win at San Francisco on Saturday. He won't have to worry facing injured Dodger center-fielder Matt Kemp, who would probably remain out until September due to an ankle injury that has made him a spectator since July 21. Hanley Ramirez is batting with an average of .433 including seven homers and 19 RBIs while he missed only one game to hit safely in his total 21 road contests. Ramirez had gone 0 for 4 with three strikeouts on last Wednesday after receiving base safely in 37 straight games.

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