Getting the win tonight was quite important for the Dodgers, not because there was any real reason to panic, but it does temporarily fend off the Giants from gaining ground. Fortunately, the Dodgers were able to make an early lead stick, capitalizing on Yankee miscues to win 8-2.
The most significant news to me, though, was the turnout of Dodger fans at Yankee Stadium.
Impressive is the word, and hearing a roll call like that on the road has to help at least a bit, which I’ll definitely take given the team’s struggles away from Chavez Ravine.
Dave Roberts salutes the Dodgers fans in the corner. So does the bullpen, throwing a baseball into the rooting section.
— Doug Padilla (@DougPadilla) September 13, 2016
The offense got off to a quick start, at least temporarily, thanks to back-to-back singles in the first from Chase Utley and Corey Seager. After Utley advanced to third on a Justin Turner fly ball, Adrian Gonzalez hit what sure seemed like an inning-ending double play. Fortunately, he busted out of the box and was safe at first on review, allowing Utley to score and the Dodgers to get off to a 1-0 lead.
But the game was busted open in the second inning when with Howie Kendrick on third (single) and Andrew Toles on first (single), Utley hit a two-out fly ball to deep right-center field where it seemed like Aaron Judge had a play on the ball. Fortunately for the Dodgers, he dropped it to score both Kendrick and Toles while putting Utley on third. Seager then followed with a single through the right side to score Utley and put the score at 4-0.
Dodgers starter Jose De Leon, making his second career appearance in the majors, gave a run back in the second on a solo homer to Starlin Castro to make the score 4-1. De Leon, on the whole, didn’t have his stuff or command today. Still, he managed to get through five innings on 83 pitches, striking out three and surrendering only three hits and two walks. Of course, two of those hits were homers, including a monster shot to Judge in the fifth frame, but those solo dingers were the only runs he surrendered.
Back to the offense, they answered De Leon giving up a run by coming back with two in the third. Kendrick hit a dribbler with one out for a single that scored Yasmani Grandal from third (single) and moved Josh Reddick up a base (double) to make it 5-1. The Dodgers then ran the double-steal play that Reddick botched early in his Dodgers career, but it was successful this time. Kendrick went on a bit of a delayed steal and tried to get caught in a rundown as Reddick broke for home on the throw, but the result was even better than anticipated as Kendrick moved to third and Reddick scored easily after Gary Sanchez threw the ball into center field for a 6-1 lead.
After De Leon gave up the aforementioned homer in the fifth to cut the lead to 6-2, there wasn’t much doing. The Dodgers faced a string of lefty relievers who shut them down quite thoroughly, allowing just one hit and one walk in 5.2 innings of work. Fortunately then, the one hit was a Yasiel Puig pinch-hit homer over the short porch in right for a 7-2 lead.
Following De Leon was Pedro Baez, who got five outs of scoreless ball, striking out two and only surrendering a single hit. Grant Dayton followed Baez, and he recorded two outs without much struggle and struck out one. Joe Blanton entered to get the Dodgers to the ninth frame, striking out two batters and stranding a double.
In the ninth, the Yankees finally brought in a righty reliever, and Turner added to the lead with a solo shot into the short porch to make things 8-2.
Josh Fields was brought in to close the game out, and he walked one and struck out two in his scoreless frame.
Honestly though, I think the most important thing we learned from this game is that Pedro Baez and the team weren’t understanding each other.
Call me crazy, but it seemed like Pedro Baez worked a lot quicker in the 6th
— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) September 13, 2016
@truebluela On radio broadcast Rick Monday said the team found out Baez misunderstood "slow the game" down. No joke
— Tim Boyd (@timaboyd) September 13, 2016
I don’t know what to say.
The win puts the Dodgers at 81-62 overall and 34-35 away from home, which puts them within striking distance of being literally average on the road once again. The Giants are playing the Padres now, so the NL West lead is temporarily 3.5 games, but will probably be back down to 3 games in a few hours.
The series against the Yankees continues tomorrow night at 1:00 PM HST/4:00 PM PST/7:00 PM EST, and it’s being broadcast on MLB Network. The matchup on the mound will be Julio Urias (3.69 ERA/3.16 FIP/4.03 DRA) in potentially his last start of the season against resurgent veteran lefty CC Sabathia (4.27 ERA/4.39 FIP/3.82 DRA).
In transaction news, Casey Fien was sent to AAA.
— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) September 12, 2016