A loss was bound to happen at some point, and it did for the resting Dodgers on Wednesday night, 7-5 to the Rockies in their series finale at Coors Field. Colorado was able to take advantage of the Dodgers' 2008 All-Stars on the mound.
But even with a game they seem destined to lose, the Dodgers managed to claw their way back. In the ninth inning Hanley Ramirez, 2-for-5 on the night, hit what appeared at first to be a game-tying home run to left field, but it died at the warning track into the glove of Carlos Gonzalez. Up next, Michael Young ended his three-hit night by grounding into a double play and just like that the game was over.
No more six-game winning streak. The Dodgers' magic number to clinch the National League West remains at 12.
Edinson Volquez, making his first start for the Dodgers and his first start since Aug. 23, allowed four runs in four innings, only the third time in the last 52 games a Dodgers starter has failed to last five innings.
In just four starts and 16⅔ innings in Denver this season, Volquez has allowed 25 runs and 35 hits, more runs and hits allowed at Coors Field in one season than any non-Rockies pitcher ever. Curt Schilling held the previous record with 33 hits allowed, in 21⅓ innings, in 2002. Noah Lowry set the prior mark with 19 runs allowed, in 15⅔ innings, in 2005.
The good news for Volquez was that even with his four runs allowed, three earned, in four innings, his 2013 Coors Field went down. Volquez, at 12,96, no longer holds the highest single season Coors Field ERA (minimum 10 innings), but is second to Bryan Hickerson's 14.29 ERA in 1995.
The Dodgers trailed 4-1, but gave themselves chances to come back. In the sixth inning they loaded the bases with nobody out, but settled for just one run as Scott Van Slyke tapped into a double play on a first-pitch check swing.
In the seventh inning the Dodgers put the first two runners on base down 4-2, but couldn't score.
Carlos Marmol, like Volquez an All-Star back in 2008 and designated for assignment by a second-division team in 2013, allowed three more runs on three hits, a walk and a balk in the seventh inning to blow the game open.
But down 7-2 the Dodgers got back into the game against Matt Belisle. The Dodgers had better success with a pair of 2008 All-Stars at the plate in the eighth inning, as Ramirez doubled and Young singled for a run. Those two were followed by an RBI double by Juan Uribe and a run-scoring single by Skip Schumaker to cut the Rockies' lead to 7-5.
But with the tying runs on base, pinch hitters Carl Crawford and Yasiel Puig struck out to end the inning. The four regulars who didn't start - Adrian Gonzalez, Andre Ethier, Crawford and Puig - combined to go 0-for-4 with three strikeouts as pinch hitters.
The Dodgers have Thursday off, their second-to-last off day of the season, before opening a three-game weekend series on Friday night in Cincinnati. With Hyun-Jin Ryu briefly sidelined with back stiffness, Chris Capuano starts the series opener for the Dodgers, while Mike Leake starts for the Reds.
Home run: Todd Helton (12)
WP - Jorge De La Rosa (16-6): 6 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts
LP - Edinson Volquez (9-11): 4 IP, 6 hits, 4 runs (3 earned runs), 4 strikeouts
Sv - Rex Brothers (15): 1 IP, 1 walk