Dodgers 7, Padres 6: Chris Taylor earns the save

In a game where Joc Pederson drove in five runs with two homers (and scored another, so he played a part in six of the seven), it is Chris Taylor who gets the attention for his throw to end Wednesday night’s game in San Diego.

Given a two-run lead to protect in the 9th, Kenley Jansen struggled a bit after striking out Jurickson Profar to lead off the inning.

An eight-pitch walk to Fernando Tatis Jr. and a single by Trent Grisham brought the winning run to the plate with just one out. Tommy Pham sent Jansen’s 0-2 offering into left to score Tatis Jr. and move Grisham to third, cutting the lead to 7-6.

Old friend Manny Machado sent Jansen’s first pitch, the 20th of the inning, on a line to left. That’s where Taylor came in, catching the ball to retire Machado and gunning down Grisham at home thanks to a great tag by Will Smith.

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The Dodgers never trailed in the game, as Pederson sent a Garrett Richards 2-2 hanging curve out to left-center for a 2-0 lead in the 2nd.

Pederson started the scoring in the 5th as well when he drew a walk to open the inning and scored on a single by Smith after moving up on a passed ball. Enrique Hernandez then doubled in Smith and the Dodgers took a 4-0 lead.

That put the Dodgers pretty firmly in control of the game to that point, as Ross Stripling cruised through the first four innings. Striking out five, Stripling hit 95 mph on the gun a few times while mixing in his new changeup and curve. Allowing just three baserunners through four and staked to a 4-0 lead, Stripling’s day was going well.

Unfortunately, a two-out walk to the nine-hole hitter in the 5th brought up Tatis Jr., who punished Stripling’s fastball with a 430-foot trip to the left-field bleachers.

With the lead cut to 4-2 heading into the 6th, Pederson showed up again. Called up to the majors on Tuesday, 20-year-old Luis Patino made his major league debut against the Dodgers in the 6th. Ranked 18th by Baseball America ahead of the 2020 season, Patino’s debut didn’t exactly go smoothly.

Singles by Corey Seager and Taylor put two on for Pederson. After getting tricked by Patino’s 0-1 changeup, Joc sent a 1-2, 97 mph fastball over the fence.

The Dodgers needed every bit of the seven runs they put up, as Stripling allowed a two-out, two-run double to Greg Garcia.

Jake McGee and Blake Treinen kept San Diego off the board, but Caleb Ferguson‘s 0-2 fastball to Wil Myers got smashed for a dinger and brought the Padres within two at 7-5 before the 9th unfolded.

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Hernandez had an impressively horrendous throw in the 6th.

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A 7-2 road trip puts the Dodgers at 9-4 for the season, a 112/41-win pace, as they head back to Dodger Stadium for seven games. First it’ll be three more with the Giants before a four-game series with the Padres, which is likely to be much more stressful than anyone is used to given the recent history.

About Cody Bashore

Cody Bashore
Cody Bashore is a lifelong Dodger fan originally from Carpinteria, California (about 80 miles north of Dodger Stadium along the coast). He left California to attend Northern Arizona University in 2011, and has lived in Arizona full-time since he graduated in 2014 with a journalism degree. He now works for the university’s athletics department after spending seven years with the local newspaper.