Dodgers 5, Giants 3: FINALLY

With the rotation coming back around to the top, it was yet another chance for the Dodgers to reset and end a horrid stretch of 16 losses in 17 games, including 11 straight. Well, tonight’s 5-3 victory over the Giants did just that, and hopefully it helps to vault the team into future success.

Finally, man.

FINALLY

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Honestly, though? Early in the game it looked like more of the same, with the bats squandering scoring chances in the first (1st/2nd, 2 outs), second (1st/2nd, 2 outs), and third (1st/2nd/3rd, 2 outs) innings. Thankfully, the offense broke out in the fourth, as Chase Utley made things easy by parking a solo dong, his eighth homer of the year, into water.

What really seemed to get things going, however, was Clayton Kershaw following right up with a “double”…

…and he was fucking pumped, folks.

Chris Taylor followed by hitting a routine grounder to short, but reached after Kershaw read it perfectly and broke for third, drawing the throw and getting there safely thanks to a nice slide. Corey Seager then made it count with a deep sacrifice fly to center for a run.

Later, with two down and after Cody Bellinger had been intentionally walked to put runners at first and second, Yasiel Puig stepped up and crushed a ball off the wall in left center to score two more.

Four runs of support for Kershaw is an extremely good thing, and anybody who was worrying about his stuff coming off his last start had to feel good about this one tonight. While his command wasn’t at the normal perfection level, the fastball, slider, and curve all had their normal life as he struck out six in six innings.

Kershaw did allow two runs, walking one and giving up an uncharacteristic eight hits. However, while one of the runs was a solo homer, the other came after Justin Turner made a lazy throwing error on a routine grounder. That led to both an unearned run scoring and upped his pitch count, which ended up knocking him out of the game.

That proved important, as it meant Ross Stripling had to come in for the seventh. While I think it was the right move since Stripling has given up just one run in his last 13.2 innings coming into the appearance, he did end up coughing up a run on two hits in his frame to cut the lead to one.

Thankfully, as the bats have low-key done many times over this streak, the Dodgers fought right back in the eighth. After Taylor reached on a check-swing infield single, with one down Turner smacked a double to left-center field, putting an insurance run on the board.

The bats generated seven walks, one hit-by-pitch, and nine hits today, with five going for extra bases (four doubles, one homer). However, in addition to the early struggles, they also stranded opportunities in the fourth (2nd, 2 outs), sixth (1st/2nd, 0 outs & 1st/2nd/3rd, 1 out), and eighth (1st/2nd, 1 out). I mean it’s definitely trending in the right direction, but it’d be nice to see them explode at some point.

That left things up to Brandon Morrow, who allowed a single but also struck out two batters. He wasn’t necessarily in trouble or anything, but Dave Roberts wasn’t taking any chances and called on Kenley Jansen for a four-out save. Jansen got a ground out to end the eighth and then entered for the ninth nursing a two-run advantage. After a strikeout to start thing, he allowed a clean single and two infield singles to load the bases. Jansen then came back to strike out Buster Posey on a 3-2 count and then notched another strikeout on three pitches to end the game.

More exciting than I would’ve liked, but whatever.

Taylor did provide some assistance to Kershaw in the fourth by throwing out a runner at home by like half the length of the bases.

Jansen is always watching … judging.

I dunno, man.

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93-52 on this crazy year and 41-29 away from the home. The Diamondbacks lost today, which means the NL West lead is up to 10 games and the magic number is down to 8. For the best record in baseball, they’re still on top by 4 games, but now it’s over the Indians (20 straight, really?).

The Dodgers and Giants play the rubber match tomorrow at 4:00 PM HST/7:00 PM PST/10:00 PM EST. Yu Darvish (4.25 ERA/4.09 FIP/3.60 DRA) will look to rebound against Matt Moore (5.31 ERA/4.68 FIP/6.33 DRA), who has had a terrible year.

About Chad Moriyama

Chad Moriyama

I get paid millions by the Dodgers.

MILLIONS!