D-backs @ Dodgers May 9, 2018: Puig returns for Wood vs. Corbin, Round 3

Photo: Stacie Wheeler

The Dodgers did something last night that they’ve done many times so far this season. They had a chance to win the game late and squandered it by leaving men on base, before literally Daniel Descalso hit a three-run home run in the 12th inning to give the Dodgers their third straight loss. The Dodgers are somehow only five games under .500 (it feels like so much more), and tonight they face the Diamondbacks for the 12th time this season. The good news is that they won’t see Arizona again until August 30th. Hopefully by then, the Dodgers aren’t in full-tank mode.

Diamondbacks
Dodgers
7:10 PM
Los Angeles
LF
Owings
SS
Taylor
SS
Ahmed
CF
Hernandez
1B
Goldschmidt
LF
Kemp
CF
Pollock
C
Grandal
RF
Souza
1B
Bellinger
2B
Marte
2B
Barnes
3B
Marrero RF Puig
C
Avila
3B
Farmer
P
Corbin (L)
P
Wood (L)

Alex Wood is still in search of his first win of the season. The Dodgers have won three of his seven starts, but he has yet to receive a winning decision this season. Wood looks to build off a solid, but inefficient start against these same Diamondbacks in his last outing. He only lasted five innings and threw 96 pitches, which matched a season-high, but Wood held Arizona’s potent offense to four hits and one run while striking out a season-high eight batters.

Wood gave Dodger fans a scare when a trainer came out to check on him after throwing warmup pitches before the fifth inning. This came a day after Hyun-Jin Ryu‘s torn groin, so it was a big relief to see him remain in the game and retire the side in 13 pitches to end his night. Wood currently has the fourth-lowest walk rate among qualified starters (3.1 percent), but hasn’t thrown more than six innings in a start since his first outing of the season.

Yasiel Puig has returned and gets the start in right field tonight. Puig struggled for the first month of the season with a .193/.250/.250 triple slash line and only five extra base hits (all doubles), but his defense in right will be a welcomed sight.

Patrick Corbin starts for the Diamondbacks, just as he did against Wood last Thursday. He lasted six innings and only allowed three hits and a run, but struck out a season-low five batters and walked multiple hitters for only the second time this season. These two pitchers also squared off on April 4th, and Corbin allowed one hit and one walk while striking out 12 through 7 1/3 innings in one of the best starts of his career. Corbin’s having a huge year right before hitting free agency in the offseason, as he currently leads the National League in WHIP. He’s only given up 26 hits in 46 innings and has a 60:9 K:BB rate. These are two of the best lefties in the National League squaring off today, and if he stays healthy Corbin is going to see a nice raise in the offseason.

Descalso is not in the lineup, so he’ll only hurt the Dodgers as a late-game pinch-hitter tonight.

——

Puig’s return meant at least one roster move had to be made, and the Dodgers shuffled their bullpen around a little.

It sucks to see Alex Verdugo get demoted, but the writing was on the wall when both Stacie and I wrote about him earlier this week. While he was producing and giving the Dodgers quality plate appearances, it is important for his development to get to play everyday. With Matt Kemp, Joc Pederson and Enrique Hernandez all producing, the minors is the only place for him to do this.

——

Tony Cingrani is finally going on the DL.

While his velocity is finally closer-to-normal, his command has been extremely sporadic and he didn’t look right in his last few outings. Hopefully some actual rest does him some good. Yimi Garcia, who allowed the game-losing home run to Descalso last night, was also sent down. Scott Alexander is back after a solid stint in Oklahoma City. He allowed four hits in four innings, but struck out five and only walked one, which is the most important part. In his 11 1/3 innings in the Majors this season, Alexander had issued nine walks. Brock Stewart is also back to be a reliever again for some reason, as Ross Stripling will remain in the rotation and start on Saturday against Cincinnati.

——

Clayton Kershaw was playing catch, which means he’s not completely dead. Bill Shaikin reported that they wouldn’t say that Kershaw would return after the 10 days minimum, but it seems like the injury could be a lot worse.

——

In other good news:

The Dodgers will be in D.C. next weekend, so that looks like the target date for the return of Justin Turner. Max Muncy and Kyle Farmer have done a half-decent job in filling in, but Turner’s return could be a huge boost for the lineup. It’ll probably take him a while to really get comfortable at the plate, but seeing him on the lineup card will feel like a win in itself.

——

Ichiro forever.

About Alex Campos

Alex Campos
I'm a writer that has blogged at a whole bunch of places about a whole bunch of sports. I was most recently writing for Chavez Ravine Fiends, but was also the former editor at Dodgers Way. I graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Marketing. At Long Beach, I covered the Dirtbags in the 2014 season as an assistant sports editor at the Daily 49er.