The Dodgers have now won six of their last seven and have taken at least a series win against the Rockies after a 5-2 victory tonight.
Rookie pitcher and top prospect Ryan Pepiot secured (hopefully) the first win of many with five quality innings and the bats backed him with early runs.
As mentioned, Pepiot was on the mound for the Dodgers after seemingly having taken a step forward since his last demotion. Since then, he has a 2.22 ERA in 24.1 innings in AAA while working on refining his offerings and that showed tonight.
While it was Pepiot who gave up the game’s first run on a single and a double in the 2nd, he didn’t allow a runner past first base the rest of his outing, and he finished with his only 1-2-3 frame in the 5th. Most of what he had seemed to be working, with the changeup getting obvious attention but his ability to show hitters a different look now with his cutter/slider proving important as well.
Pepiot really reminds me of Tony Gonsolin, where the development of his overall stuff and his ownership of one elite pitch means he’s getting to the “just throw strikes” portion of things. Of course, that last step is easier said than done, but still, it’s promising: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 6 K, 85 Pitches.
Pepiot exited in line for the win because that one early run wasn’t enough for German Marquez to hold. In fact, the Dodgers responded immediately in the second via a lead-off walk from Will Smith and Max Muncy smashing a homer to right, his eighth, to make it 2-1.
Mookie Betts then added to the lead in the 3rd with his 18th dong of the year, a solo shot.
In the 4th, the Dodgers made it four innings in a row of scoring when Muncy double and Justin Turner drove him in with a single to make things 4-1. They could’ve made if four in a row in the 5th after a lead-off triple from Gavin Lux, but amazingly that was squandered by the top of the order.
Phil Bickford took over for Pepiot in the 6th and was greeted by Kris Bryant immediately hammering a homer to cut the lead to 4-2, but he got through the inning. Surprisingly, he also started the 7th and got two outs but surrendered a single and a stolen base as well.
That brought in Evan Phillips, who got the final out on one pitch to close the 7th, the continued in the 8th and gave up a single but then clowned on the heart of the Rockies order.
Still, the game was close and the Dodgers hadn’t scored since the 4th off German or the pen that entered in the 7th. However, they switched things up in the 8th with a two-out rally led by the two suddenly hot Dodgers in Muncy (walk, reached for the fourth time) and JT (single, his second hit) to corner the runners. Trayce Thompson then stayed hot himself by plopping a single into right for a 5-2 lead.
That lined up Brusdar Graterol for the save in the 9th, giving up just a bloop single and notching two strikeouts in a relatively easy inning.
I don’t blame him.
The Dodgers are now 51-29 on the year and with the Padres and Giants losing, they have leads of 5.5 and 10.5 games on them, respectively.