After dropping the first two games of a four-game set with the Padres, the Dodgers looked to get back in the series tonight with hopes of earning a series split at least.
Thanks to Tony Gonsolin‘s excellent outing and great work by the pen, the offense was given time to blow it open late in a 6-0 win.
Gonsolin worked out of minor trouble in the 1st, but beyond that he was dominating. In a spot start, he struck out a career-high eight batters in just 4.2 innings, giving up just three singles and a walk.
The low strike was being called and the split was working, and that played perfectly into Gonsolin’s strengths. He did throw a bunch of pitches, so he was removed after a walk and a single in the 5th inning on 82 pitches. Fortunately, Blake Treinen avoided damage with a strikeout and then continued in the 6th with a 1-2-3 frame and notched two more whiffs.
Of course, the issue has been on the other side of the ball, and the Dodger offense started predictably slow. Zach Davis faced just two over the minimum through four despite two singles, a walk, and an error thanks to two double plays. Needless to say, there were no runs.
That changed in the 5th, though not through ways you’d normally think. AJ Pollock drew a lead-off walk, then Chris Taylor bunted for a hit, and Edwin Rios finally cashed a run in with a single that deflected off Davies’ glove. Austin Barnes followed with another bunt that scored another run, though Rios messed up and got caught leaning at second to sorta kill the rally. Regardless, the Dodgers had a 2-0 lead.
Pedro Baez then took over in the 7th, issuing a walk, but otherwise cruising through the inning unscathed. He was then allowed to start the 8th and immediately played with fire by walking the lead-off man before the call for Brusdar Graterol was made. He got Fernando Tatis Jr. to ground back to him for a double play, gave up a double served the other way, and then made absolute mincemeat out of Manny Machado.
Justin Turner then lit up a three-run bomb to enter to make it 6-0 and blow the game open.
Kenley looked dominant, with the cutter up to 94 mph, and he struck out two and got a ground out to preserve the shutout.
One issue was that of Will Smith‘s neck.
Apart from the win, this game did provide entertainment as well…
…along with some insight.