Mark Ellis, Matt Kemp, and Hanley Ramirez know that there's no success like failure, and that failure is no success at all.
Drew Pomeranz and Adam Ottavino combined for seven scoreless innings, as the Rockies' unconventional and maligned pitching staff shut down the Dodgers 2-0 Monday night in the opener of a three-game series at Dodger Stadium.
The Rockies just completed a nine-game homestand that saw their pitchers put up an 8.00 ERA, and before we write that off as a Coors Field creation we must also note that Colorado also allowed 18 runs in three games at Petco Park from July 20-22. But you wouldn't know it judging Monday's game.
Pomeranz was very effective in his four innings, allowing three hits, three walks, and no runs, with seven strikeouts. But because the Rockies limit their starters' pitch counts he was pulled after 84 pitches.
Ottavino continued where Pomeranz left off, pitching three scoreless innings of his own with two strikeouts. Ottavino came close to allowing no hits, but Shane Victorino's short fly to center was ruled a hit. Dexter Fowler appeared to make a sliding catch on the play, which was initially ruled the third out of the inning and the Rockies left the field.
But after manager Don Mattingly argued, the umpires conferred and the call was overturned. As expected, that reversal did not sit well with Rockies skipper Jim Tracy, who got his money's worth in getting ejected. Tracy slammed his cap to the ground with both hands and repeatedly said, as translated by Vin Scully, "That's blinking fertilizer."
After the Rockies returned to the field, the Dodgers were down 2-0 with a tying runs on base. Mark Ellis drove a fly ball to left field that got the crowd excited, but it died at the warning track for an inning-ending fly out.
The Dodgers also put the tying runs on base in the eighth inning, but Luis Cruz struck out to end the inning.
Each team had a pair of hits in the first inning. The Rockies put runners on first and third with one out, then cashed one of them in on a fly ball to left field by Carlos Gonzalez for a sacrifice fly and a 1-0 lead. The Dodgers answered with back-to-back singles by Shane Victorino and Mark Ellis to open the game, but the heart of the order was set down in order by Pomeranz.
Eric Young Jr. and Jordan Pacheco struck again with hits in the third inning, with a single by Fowler sandwiched in between. Young scored his second run of the game on Pacheco's single to center. After a wild pitch and ensuing intentional walk to Gonzalez loaded the bases, Chris Capuano was able to get out of the jam thanks to a sharp ground ball by catcher Ramon Hernandez that Mark Ellis was able to easily turn into a double play.
The Dodgers responded in the third just like they did in the first inning. Both Victorino and Ellis walked to open the frame, but Matt Kemp grounded into a double play and Hanley Ramirez struck out to end the threat.
Those two runs were the only tallies allowed by Capuano, who pitched seven innings for the first time since July 25. He allowed nine hits and one intentional walk, and struck out six on the night, but suffered his fifth loss in his last six starts.
Jerry Sands, who started in right field after getting recalled on Monday, went 0-for-3 with a strikeout.
Milestone For Ellis
A.J. Ellis walked in the fourth inning, his 50th walk of the season, all of which have come as catcher. It is just the 24th time in the 129-year history of the franchise that a catcher has walked at least fifty times.
|Dodgers Catchers With 50-Walk Seasons|
|Roy Campanella||1949 (67), 1950 (54), 1951 (52), 1952 (57), 1953 (67), 1955 (55), 1956 (66)|
|Mike Scioscia||1985 (74), 1986 (61), 1987 (54), 1989 (50), 1990 (54)|
|John Roseboro||1959 (50), 1961 (55), 1962 (50)|
|Russell Martin||2007 (67), 2008 (85), 2009 (65)|
|Joe Ferguson||1973 (75), 1974 (55)|
|Mike Piazza||1996 (80), 1997 (68)|
|Chad Kreuter||2000 (52)|
|A.J. Ellis||2012 (50)|
|Counts walks as catcher only. Source: Baseball-Reference.com|
Home Runs: none
WP - Adam Ottavino (3-1): 3 IP, 1 hit, 2 strikeouts
LP - Chris Capuano (10-8): 7 IP, 9 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 6 strikeouts
Sv - Rafael Betancourt (18): 3 up, 3 down