Dodgers 5, Padres 2: Vargas drives in 3 and Heaney rebounds in bulk relief role for win #108

Despite losing the opening game and stranding a small island in the series, the Dodgers pulled out their eighth series win in a row after a 5-2 victory tonight over the Padres.

While the defense cost them early, the bulk relief role seemed to sort Andrew Heaney well, and the Dodgers were led on offense by Miguel Vargas to finally come up with some timely hits.

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Starting the game for the Dodgers was Brusdar Graterol, as they decided to do a dry run for both him and Heaney in different roles to prepare for a potential playoff scenario. Things actually went well in terms of process, as he gave up a soft single, an infield single, and then got two routine groundouts to put him on the verge of escaping.

Graterol then induced a seemingly routine grounder from Brandon Drury as well, but it got past Trea Turner and Chris Taylor for a two-run “single”. Brutal defense this week or so.

The Padres also went with an opener in Steven Wilson, who got a much more casual 1-2-3 inning. That brought in Sean Manaea, who has struggled mightily against the Dodgers this year, and he gave a run back in the 2nd. A Will Smith single was followed by Max Muncy getting hit, and after the runners were cornered following an attempted double-play turn, Vargas cashed in Will with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-1.

But Manaea settled down after that, giving up just an infield single the rest of the way, and he made it through the 5th.

The Padres then turned to Pierce Johnson, who promptly gave up a double ripped down the line to Mookie Betts and then an infield single to Trea that cornered the runners. Freddie Freeman then blooped a single into left to tie the game up, 2-2.

After a strikeout, there was a double steal and then Muncy drew a walk to load the bases. Things didn’t look great after a Taylor whiff, but Vargas stepped up and drilled a tough pitch to center for a single and a 4-2 lead.

Meanwhile, the bulk guy for the Dodgers was Heaney, and he was equally impressive to bounceback from a difficult run. He did load the bases in the 2nd behind a pair of singles and a walk, but fanned Manny Machado on an ugly swing to keep the score locked.

He then got the next three innings and only gave up a double, making this experience something of a success.

That brought in the actual pen, which started with Craig Kimbrel facing the minimum after he erased a single with a double play. Caleb Ferguson then got the 7th and got in trouble with a one-out walk and then a single. However, he bared down to strikeout Juan Soto on some of his hardest pitches of the season at 96-97 mph.

Dave Roberts then turned to Chris Martin, who turned in another great outing against Manny, striking him out on three pitches.

On the other side, Adrian Morejon had gotten five hitters in a row for the Padres, but ran into Will in the 8th, who hammered a solo shot for a 5-2 lead.

That gave additional cushion to Martin, who continued on in the 8th but ran into trouble, only getting an out and giving up a pair of singles. That brought in Alex Vesia, who uncorked a wild pitch to move both runners up, but got a fly out and a strikeout to avoid damage.

Another pitcher coming back from the IL was David Price, who was going for the save in the 9th. He got exactly that, giving up just a single in a scoreless frame to end it.

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108 and 48 on the year, with every win setting a new franchise record. Magic Number is one for making the rest of the games this season truly meaningless for the Dodgers.

TEAMCHASEGAMES
AstrosMLB6 Up
ClinchedNLDoesn’t Matter
ClinchedNL WestDoesn’t Matter

The Dodgers will now return home for a marathon six-game series against the Rockies, starting tomorrow at 4:10 PM HT/7:10 PM PT/10:10 PM ET with Clayton Kershaw facing Chad Kuhl.

About Chad Moriyama

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