The Dodgers looked to keep their streak of three consecutive series wins alive in tonight’s game against the Phillies, and more importantly they looked to rebound after one of their worst played games of the recent successful stretch. Thanks to Ross Stripling‘s stellar development and Matt Kemp continuing to be the MVP of the team, the Dodgers did exactly that in a 8-2 win over the Phils.
Unlike yesterday, the bats got off to a quick start. Joc Pederson started things in the 1st with a single, and later with two down, Kemp came through with a double down the line to get the early 1-0 lead.
In the 3rd the Dodgers put together a two-out rally for a crooked number. Max Muncy got the dong party started with a solo shot to center for a 2-0 lead.
After Yasmani Grandal followed with a walk, Kemp came through again, this time lining a homer to left to make it 4-0.
The bats got right back at it in the 4th, with Breyvic Valera and Logan Forsythe singling to start, and then Stripling reaching on an error on his bunt to load the bases. Joc then plated a run with a deep fly ball to make it 5-0, though they didn’t get any more.
Not to worry though, as they got what they needed in the 6th. Cody Bellinger started the rally with a one-out single to right, and he was scored after Chris Taylor roped a double down the line in left.
Later, with two down and after an intentional walk to get to him, Stripling stepped up with runners on the corners and lined a single to up the lead to 7-0.
Amazingly, none of those fireworks even felt all that necessary. Once again, Stripling was the big story as he continued to show he’s not just had a quality run, but that he’s evolving as a starter. He surrendered two walks and four hits on the night, giving up just one run on a solo homer in the 7th when the game was already well out of reach.
As you can see, he struck out nine batters in a dominant performance, reducing his ERA to 1.68 on the year. Clayton Kershaw, who? … I’m sorry, I’m sorry.
Yimi Garcia then took over, as the pen looked to simply use as few pitches and pitchers as possible. Garcia gave up two singles, but struck out two and eventually got a scoreless 8th.
The Dodgers rallied for a run in the 8th, as Enrique Hernandez and Joc both reached on singles, and the bases were loaded after Yasmani drew a one-out walk. Kemp (who else?) got a run out of it with a sacrifice fly to right-center that he just missed, and that was all for the inning.
Pat Venditte, matchup king, then closed out the game in the 9th. He gave up a run on two singles and a hit-by-pitch, but he ended the game in ideal fashion by eventually finishing the frame himself after the pen was tasked with 22 outs yesterday.
The Dodgers improve to 26-29 with the victory, and with the Rockies losing, the Dodgers are now once again 3.5 games back in the NL West.
The four-game set with the Phillies concludes tomorrow afternoon at 1:35 PM HST/4:35 PM PST/7:35 PM EST. Kershaw (2.86 ERA/3.63 FIP/3.23 DRA) will come off the disabled list to make the start, and he’ll be faced with a tough opposition starter in ace Aaron Nola (2.27 ERA/2.67 FIP/2.32 DRA).