Freeway Series begins at Dodger Stadium

Chris Taylor #3 of the Los Angeles Dodgers bats in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels during a spring training game at Camelback Ranch on March 10, 2023 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Angels will play for the first time in Southern California in 2023 Sunday evening, meeting at Dodger Stadium to begin the three-game Freeway Series to conclude spring training.

The game will be the first under Dodger Stadium's new LED lights, which replaced all of its field lights. The 600-fixture system will bring better visibility for players and fans, enhance high-definition broadcasts and minimize glare and spill from affecting anyone in or around the stadium, according to the team.

The Dodgers said the new system is also more energy-efficient, and have color-changing abilities allowing the lights to be used more creatively for on-field celebrations and concerts.

Angels manager Phil Nevin has said Shohei Ohtani will be the designated hitter for each game of the three-game series, so Sunday's game will likely be the first time he and Mike Trout are in the Angels' lineup together since Ohtani struck out Trout to end the World Baseball Classic on Tuesday.

Clayton Kershaw will pitch for the Dodgers, facing fellow left-hander Tucker Davidson.

Kershaw, who turned 35 last Sunday, is 1-1 with a 5.11 ERA in 12 1/3 innings in three spring training starts. He was 12-3 with a 2.28 ERA in 2022 and became the team's career strikeout leader.

The 27-year-old Davidson is 1-0 with a 5.54 ERA in 13 innings in five spring training appearances. Davidson was 2-7 with a 6.75 ERA as a rookie in 2022. He began the season with the Atlanta Braves, but was optioned to their Triple-A Gwinnett affiliate April 12, one day after allowing five runs and five hits in 2 2/3 innings in relief in an 11-2 loss to Washington in his first appearance of the season.

Davidson was recalled by the Braves on May 17, went 1-2 with a 4.26 ERA in three starts, then optioned again to Gwinnett on May 29.

The Angels acquired Davidson and reliever Jesse Chavez on Aug. 2 in exchange for closer Raisel Iglesias. Davidson was 1-5 with a 6.87 ERA in eight starts for the Angels.

The Angels are 16-10-2 in spring training play, while the Dodgers are 13-11-3.

The Dodgers broadcast of the 6:10 p.m. game will be on SportsNet LA while the Angels broadcast will be on Bally Sports So Cal. The game will be on MLB.TV as part of its annual free preview, available to anyone with an account.

The final two games of the Freeway Series will be played Monday and Tuesday at Angel Stadium.

The Angels lead the series that began in 1962, 73-55, with five games ending in ties. The Angels won two of the three games in 2022.

Spring training games that are tied after nine innings are customarily called once the day's scheduled pitchers have been used.

The Dodgers will open the regular season Thursday at Dodger Stadium against the Arizona Diamondbacks with Julio Urías as their starting pitcher. The Dodgers had Major League Baseball's best record and won the National League West Division for the ninth time in 10 seasons in 2022, but were eliminated by the San Diego Padres in a National League Division Series.

The Angels will open the regular season Thursday at Oakland with Ohtani pitching. The Angels failed to qualify for the postseason for the eighth consecutive season, finishing third in the five-team American League West with a 73-89 record, 13 games behind the Tampa Bay Rays in the race for the American League's final wild-card playoff berth.