On a night the Dodger bullpen needed some relief, John Ely came through in a big way, leading the Dodgers to another 4-2 win over the Giants. Both Jonathan Broxton and Hong-Chih Kuo were ruled unavailable by Joe Torre before the game, and Ely eased that burden by pitching seven inning, allowing just one run.
Ely pitched seven innings for the fifth time in 12 starts. He allowed a run in the first inning, but after that allowed just four hits and a walk in his final six innings.
Ramon Troncoso and George Sherrill combined to pitch the eighth, an inning that ended with Sherrill striking out Aubrey Huff, Sherrill's first strikeout since May 17, a span of 30 batters. Justin Miller came in to close the game, attempting to get his first career save. Miller gave up a home run to Pat Burrell and a single to Edgar Renteria, and Ronald Belisario was called upon to get the final out. Pitching in his third straight game, Belisario made just one pitch, retiring Buster Posey on a line drive to shortstop for Belisario's first career save.
James Loney picked up three runs batted in on two singles, giving him 22 RBI for the second straight month. The last Dodger to collect 20 RBI in consecutive months was Manny Ramirez, who turned the trick in August and September 2008, his first two months in Los Angeles.
Ramirez himself had a short, but eventful night, collecting a single in the first inning, but hurt his right hamstring getting back to second base on a throw from the outfield. Ramirez left the game, and after the game Joe Torre told reporters that Manny would be re-examined and out of the lineup tomorrow. Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times spoke with trainer Stan Conte:
Conte wouldn't say if the DL was a possibility. He didn't rule it out, though.
Matt Kemp was held out of the starting lineup for the third straight game, but was called upon to pinch run for Ramirez in the top of the first. Kemp had a very nice rebound game, with two hits and two great catches in center field, the last one an outstanding diving grab in the eighth inning.
Torre also told reporters that Andre Ethier would get a day off tomorrow, so the likely starting outfield for Wednesday's afternoon game will be Garret Anderson, Kemp, and Reed Johnson. Vicente Padilla will face Jonathan Sanchez in the series finale, as the 13-13 Dodgers attempt a winning record in June.
Russell Martin stole two bases for the fourth time in his career. There have only been seven two-steal games by a Los Angeles Dodger catcher:
|LA Dodger 2-Steal Games By Catchers|
Admit it: you were as surprised as me to see Piazza on this list.
WP - John Ely (4-5): 7 IP, 5 hits, 1 run, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts
LP - Matt Cain (6-7): 5 IP, 7 hits, 4 runs, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts
Sv - Ronald Belisario (1): 1 pitch, 1 out
P.S. - Thanks to everyone who came out to the SB Nation Los Angeles launch party tonight. It was a pleasure meeting some of you in person for the first time, and seeing old friends as well. Phil, Mike, and I met up with Delias Man, Maddz, Rocknjosie, Ego Crusher!, Marty, BHSportsGuy, Julio Nievas, and I'm sure I am leaving off a few names. A grand time was had by all.