Dodgers 4, D-backs 2: Doing just enough to win counts all the same

While it seems at times like the Dodgers have been treading water due to the amount the Giants are winning, they have won four of their last five and 10 of their last 12. They extended both of those by a game in the win column after edging another win over a bad team in a 4-2 victory over the Diamondbacks.

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I had never heard of Humberto Castellanos before today, so needless to say I was concerned. Thankfully, the Dodgers got off to a quick start at least. After blowing a chance in the 1st, Will Smith led off the 2nd with a double and Justin Turner cashed him in with a single. AJ Pollock quickly made it a crooked number for the inning with a two-run bomb, his 17th of the year to make it 3-0.

After having his turn skipped last time around, piggybacking Clayton Kershaw in relief instead, Tony Gonsolin was back starting and looked solid. He did get a bunch of help from his defense, but kept the Diamondbacks in check through five innings.

Gonsolin gave up a solo shot to Dodger killer Kole Calhoun in the 2nd, but faced just one over the minimum through four. In the 5th he got a bit unlucky, getting three outs but ending up with a runner on first due to a wild pitch on a strikeout. That runner was advanced and then a Josh VanMeter single plated the run to make it 3-2.

His night was over after that, and the life on his pitches continued to be promising: 5 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 7 K, 67 Pitches.

Remarkably, Castellanos had kept the Dodgers quiet outside of the 2nd. Luis Frias took over for him in the 6th and immediately gave up a double to Trea Turner and a single to Max Muncy. Smith took advantage of that with a sacrifice fly to left and a 4-2 lead. Joe Mantiply got the last out of the inning, Sean Poppen got a scoreless 7th, and Tyler Clippard loaded the bases in the 8th but escaped. Noe Ramirez closed the book on the Dodgers, securing a scoreless final three innings.

On the other end, Alex Vesia gave up a double and a walk in the 6th but didn’t give up a run, and Corey Knebel got a 1-2-3 frame with two strikeouts in the 7th. Blake Treinen took to his setup role, continuing to not look as sharp as he did previously. He issued two walks in his inning before getting Calhoun to strike out.

Kenley Jansen shut the door in the 9th, but mainly thanks to two great catches in left by Taylor.

A win is a win.

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The Dodgers improve to 99-55 on the year and remain 1 game back of the Giants in the NL West.

Kershaw will face Zac Gallen tomorrow at 2:10 PM PT/5:10 PM PT/8:10 PM ET.

About Chad Moriyama

"A highly rational Internet troll." - Los Angeles Times