The Dodgers scored as many runs tonight against Ubaldo Jimenez as they had in his previous two starts against them combined this season, but it wasn't enough, as the Rockies prevailed, 7-5 in the series opener at Dodger Stadium. Colorado is still in third place in the National League West, but pulled to within a game and a half of the Giants. The Rockies are just one behind both the Giants and Padres in the loss column.
A.J. Ellis had quite the offensive night. He drove in Matt Kemp in each of his first two at-bats, with a single and double, respectively, and added a second double in the sixth inning. Ellis, who entered the game with two career doubles in 103 plate appearances, doubled that total tonight in his first multi-extra-base-hit game. With three hits tonight, Ellis has seven hits in his last 11 at-bats, dating back to August 22.
Hiroki Kuroda gave up two unearned runs in the opening frame, as , Jr. reached on an error by Rafael Furcal, then scored on a Troy Tulowitzki home run, which is nothing new in September. The mulleted one has 12 home runs in 16 games this month. The Dodgers as a team, by contrast, have nine.
In the fourth inning, the Rockies did some more damage off Kuroda, using four consecutive hits to plate three runs, all earned this time around. On the night, Kuroda have up five runs in his six innings, with seven strikeouts and no unintentional walks.
Jonathan Broxton entered the game to start the seventh inning of a 5-4 game for the Dodgers, still for some reason with his signature "Iron Man" playing in the background. At some point, pitching entrance music is like coffee: for closers only. Broxton, who hadn't pitched since last Friday night, struggled mightily, allowing two runs and five baserunners (including on intentional walk) while recording only two outs.
"This is something he's got to fight his way through. When it comes time to let the ball go, it's that not necessarily knowing where it's going," Torre noted Broxton's struggles, "He's just trying to overthrow it a lot of times."
Down 7-4 in the bottom of the seventh, the Dodgers loaded the bases with one out, but Casey Blake struck out and Kemp grounded out to end the threat. Although the Dodgers are no longer in the race, the crowd was loud and excited at several times tonight, including in the eighth inning rally. Kemp tattooed a ball down the right field line that might have tied the game, but it ended up just foul.
The Dodgers scored once in the ninth inning, and put the tying runs on base, but Kemp struck out to end the game.
- Andre Ethier had four walks tonight (and a hit) and, as pointed out by Jon Weisman of Dodger Thoughts, is the first Dodger to have four walks since Ethier did hit himself, on August 7, 2009.
- Ethier has reached base in seven consecutive plate appearances
- Jay Gibbons had three hits, and Kemp had two hits for the Dodgers
- Todd Helton had four hits for the Rockies
Ryan Theriot, who was 0-for-4 tonight with a hit-by-pitch, has three hits in 40 at-bats this month
John Ely pitches tomorrow, his first game at Dodger Stadium since July 10, against Jhoulys Chacin. Remember, tomorrow's game is at 1:10 p.m., and won't be shown live because it falls in Fox's exclusivity window. The game will be on Prime Ticket at 4 p.m.
WP - Ubaldo Jimenez (19-6): 6 1/3 IP, 6 hits, 4 runs, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts
LP- Hiroki Kuroda (10-13): 6 IP, 7 hits, 5 runs (3 earned), 1 (intentional) walk, 7 strikeouts
Sv - Huston Street (20): 1 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 2 strikeouts