In a short season anything can happen, and both the Padres and Rockies are off to hot starts to match the Dodgers, making them a threat with margins so thin. Thus this series at San Diego had increased significance, and a marquee matchup between Walker Buehler and Chris Paddack ended 5-4 after quite the dogfight.
Joc Pederson has been looking just alright recently, but that’s all due to his lack of power so far. He decided to use the first pitch of the game to change that, jacking his first dong of the year to left-center for a 1-0 lead.
Unfortunately, Buehler suffered from a similar fate in his first inning, surrendering a solo shot to Trent Grisham. He also surrendered two more solo shots on the day, one to Wil Myers in the 4th and one to Fernando Tatis Jr. in the 5th. Those were the only hits he gave up, but Buehler generally struggled with command all game, still not looking quite sharp. That’s reflected in the three strikeouts and three walks, as well as the 43 strikes out of 79 pitches through five innings.
The Dodgers rallied in the 5th, Corey Seager staying hot with a double, Matt Beaty plopped in a single, and then Will Smith came through with a double to the oppo gap to clear them for two more runs and three for the Dodgers on the day.
Aside from one game, the Dodgers pen has been amazing this year. Well, make that two now after failing to preserve the 3-3 tie.
Brusdar Graterol entered in the 6th and gave up two hits while getting only two outs. Caleb Ferguson then gave up his first hits of the year to score an inherited runner before getting out of it, sticking Graterol with two for a 5-3 Padres lead.
The offense went quiet after the 5th against a struggling Padres pen, managing two walks over the next three innings. In the 9th, Cody Bellinger got closer Kirby Yates with a solo shot to cut things to 5-4.
Unfortunately, Yates settled in after that and got the rest of the side in order.
Well … that sucked.