Edinson Volquez is fighting for a postseason roster spot, while his club is fighting for home-field advantage. On Thursday, the Dodgers wrap up their season series against the archrival Giants with Volquez on the hill.
Trailing St. Louis by 2 1/2 games and Atlanta by two games in the fight for home field in the National League, the Dodgers appear destined to open the playoffs on the road. If they can catch either the Cardinals or the Braves, they'll begin the NL Division Series at Dodger Stadium next Thursday.
Volquez, meanwhile, is hoping to earn a spot on the playoff roster as a long reliever. In four starts since coming over from San Diego, Volquez has shown steady improvement. His most recent outing -- 6 1/3 innings, five hits, two runs (one earned) against the Padres last Friday -- was his best with Los Angeles thus far.
As for the Giants, they'll hand the ball to veteran right-hander Tim Lincecum, who could be making his final start for the organization that drafted and developed him.
Lincecum, who won two Cy Young Awards and two World Series in San Francisco, will be a free agent and says he has to "see what's on the table before I dismiss anything."
In seven seasons with the Giants, Lincecum has racked up 89 wins, 1,504 strikeouts and a 3.47 ERA. Perhaps more importantly, he posted a 5-2 record and 2.47 ERA in 12 postseason appearances.
"It's been one memory after another," Lincecum said. "There were a number of guys who were here before me whose careers I got to see, and young guys who have come up and made names for themselves, and I've also been a part of that."
Dodgers: Ethier ailing
Outfielder Andre Ethier was sent to Los Angeles on Wednesday to undergo tests on his injured left ankle. He hasn't played since Sept. 13, when he aggravated it while legging out a double. An MRI and CT scan showed his lower left leg had improved but not completely healed.
"Yeah, I'm a little worried about him," manager Don Mattingly said. "He didn't look good and wasn't running very hard. I'd like to be optimistic."
The Dodgers are officially calling the injury a left ankle sprain. Ethier is hitting .272 this season with 12 homers.
Giants: Scutaro to have pin put in pinkie
Second baseman Marco Scutaro will have a pin placed in his left pinkie finger, which he injured when he was hit by a pitch in June. The pin will remain in Scutaro's finger for more than a month in an attempt to straighten the bend in the finger.
Scutaro continued playing despite the injury before being officially shut down Tuesday.
"That was what I was supposed to do when I got hit," Scutaro said of the pin. "But I tried to wait a couple of days and keep playing."
• In 50 career at-bats against Lincecum, Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez has struck out 16 times and notched just 10 hits -- none for extra bases.
• The Giants are 39-39 at home this season with four games remaining as they try to avoid their first sub-.500 season at home since 2008.
• Brandon Belt, Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval, who all have at least 10 career plate appearances vs. Volquez, are each hitting above .400 against him.