July 27, 2015

The Los Angeles Dodgers' offense needs to improve in order to avoid the club's longest slide of the season, and the lineup won't be able to count on Clayton Kershaw to put up zeroes Wednesday night.

That's because the left-hander was scratched due to hip soreness hours before the Dodgers were set to host the Oakland Athletics.

Mike Bolsinger (5-3, 2.79 ERA) will make the start, with Kershaw being pushed back to Friday in the Freeway Series opener against the Los Angeles Angels.

The Dodgers (56-45) were shut down Tuesday as Oakland (45-56) won 2-0 behind Sonny Gray's three-hit, nine-strikeout effort. Howie Kendrick had two of those hits for the Dodgers, who are batting .156 with four runs while losing three in a row for the fifth time this season.

With his name among trade speculation, Yasiel Puig is 2 for 24 - both homers - with seven strikeouts in his last eight contests.

Los Angeles also is uncertain how long it will be without third baseman Justin Turner, who was scratched from Tuesday's lineup after a pimple on his leg turned into an infection.

"Over the off day, something went wrong,'' manager Don Mattingly said of Turner, who leads the team with a .323 average and has a career-high 13 homers.

"It was this itty bitty thing then it turned into something a little more dangerous."

Oakland has traded Scott Kazmir, Tyler Clippard and Ben Zobrist in a six-day span, but snapped a four-game skid despite scoring three or fewer runs for a fifth consecutive contest and the 11th time in the last 14.

''We can still win a lot of ballgames," outfielder Josh Reddick said. "We've just got to keep that confidence in ourselves and believe in ourselves. .. The main goal is to win ballgames, with or without those guys.''

Reddick homered and had half of Oakland's six hits Tuesday. He's batting .375 in his last eight games.

Jesse Chavez (5-10, 3.45) looks to rebound after he allowed four runs, eight hits and walked two in three-plus innings of a 9-3 loss at San Francisco on Friday. It was the third time in his last four starts that Chavez gave up four runs.

"You got to tip your cap to good hitting, but at the same time you got to make adjustments and I didn't do that," said the right-hander, who has a 5.81 ERA while losing four of his last six starts.

He's never started against the Dodgers and hasn't faced them since 2010.

Bolsinger ended a seven-start winless stretch last Wednesday after allowing an unearned run and three hits over seven innings of a 3-1 victory at Atlanta. The right-hander has never faced Oakland.

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