Rockies @ Dodgers May 23, 2018: Maeda for the series win

Photo: Stacie Wheeler

The Dodgers (21-27) evened the series against the Rockies (26-23) on Tuesday night thanks to back-to-back home runs by Chris Taylor and Yasiel Puig plus some darn good pitching by the bullpen. It also marked the return of the Puig #batflip, although it was sort of a reversed version.

I feel whole again.

They go for the series win in the rubber game Wednesday.

Rockies
Dodgers
7:10 PM
Los Angeles
CF
Blackmon
SS
Taylor
RF
Dahl
C
Barnes
3B
Arenado
3B
Turner
LF
Parra
LF
Kemp
SS
Story
CF
Hernandez
1B
Desmond
2B
Forsythe
C
Iannetta RF Puig
2B
Castro
1B
Muncy
P
Freeland (L)
P
Maeda (R)

Kenta Maeda (3-3, 3.89 ERA, 2.80 FIP) looks to build upon what was his best start of the year last time out in Miami. He allowed only two hits over eight dominant shutout innings, striking out eight and walking none on 96 pitches. It was his longest start since May 10 last year when he went 8 1/3 innings against Pittsburgh, and it was arguably one of the best outings of his career. Maeda’s gem — plus seven runs of offense — was just what the Dodgers needed to snap a six-game losing streak. It also thankfully silenced the Maeda-to-the-bullpen arguments, a proposal I don’t really understand considering the Dodgers’ rotation is currently Maeda, Alex Wood, Ross Stripling, Walker Buehler and Brock Stewart?

Overall against the Rockies, Maeda is 4-2 with a 2.56 ERA in seven career games (five starts). Charlie Blackmon is hitting .364 against Maeda with two doubles and a home run. Chris Iannetta is 3-for-7 with two home runs against him.

Kyle Freeland (4-4, 3.17 ERA, 3.75 FIP) has won his last three decisions and has made five consecutive quality starts. The left-handed sinkerballer is 1-2 with a 4.26 ERA in four career starts against the Dodgers. Justin Turner has owned Freeland and is 6-for-11 with three doubles against him.

——

The Dodgers made a roster move ahead of the series finale.

JT Chargois went 2-1 with a 4.76 ERA and 4.23 FIP in 20 relief appearances with the Dodgers. He allowed 17 hits and walked 12 in 17 innings. After a strong start to the season, he struggled in May (9.45 ERA in 6 2/3 innings).

——

After the home victory on Tuesday, the Dodgers have all of a sudden won five of their last six. Meanwhile, in the dry and lonely desert, the D-backs have lost seven straight. The Dodgers still have some work to do to dig themselves out of the hole and reach .500, but they’ve been playing a lot better of late. Justin Turner‘s back and healthy. Taylor, back in the leadoff spot tonight, is turning things around. Puig has hit five home runs in his last eight games and is feeling frisky. The bullpen has been much more effective as well. Kenley Jansen has a 0.82 ERA in May, picking up his ninth save of the season on Tuesday.

The good news is now beginning to eclipse the bad news. Clayton Kershaw is close to returning as well. He threw a bullpen session today and is scheduled to pitch in a simulated game on Saturday.

The Dodgers have a pulse, guys.

About Stacie Wheeler

Stacie Wheeler
Stacie Wheeler, born and raised in So Cal, has been writing about the Dodgers since 2010. She wrote daily as the co-editor of Lasorda's Lair for five long years, and she has also written for Dodgers Nation, Dodger Blue 1958 and The Hardball Times. She currently contributes to True Blue LA. Stacie graduated from the University Of Southern California with a bachelor's degree in Cinema-Television. You can also watch her videos on her YouTube channel, DishingUpTheDodgers.