Don Mattingly better be careful if he gets a cake for his 52nd birthday. If blowing out the candles goes like the rest of his Saturday decisions, he might have to call the fire department. Mattingly and the Dodgers lost their sixth straight game on Saturday night, 6-1 to the Orioles for a day-night-doubleheader sweep.
In a 3-1 game in the sixth inning with two runners on base, amd after watching Paco Rodriguez and Ronald Belisario allow the deciding runs in relief in the morning contest, Mattingly went to the mound in the nightcap to visit Josh Beckett, who was at 103 pitches and one out shy of a quality start. Mattingly left Beckett in, and was rewarded with a three-run home run by Manny Machado to put the game away at 6-1.
It was the second home run allowed by Beckett, who was also victimized by the red-hot Chris Davis in the second inning. Beckett on the season has allowed six home runs in 25 innings, tied for third most in the majors.
Not that it mattered with the Dodgers' offense. The club plated one against Wei-Yin Chen in the first inning, then nothing else. The Dodgers put up six singles and drew four walks, but also hit into three double plays.
The Dodgers have averaged just 2.76 runs per game this season, and have scored more than three runs just five times all season. Luis Cruz started both games of the doubleheader and went a combined 0-for-6. He is hitless in his last 12 at-bats and has just four singles in 46 at-bats (.087) on the season.
The Dodgers are now 17-51 (.250) in American League parks since 2005.
Tommy Hunter pitched the final three innings to earn the save for Baltimore, the first save of his career, and the first three-inning save against the Dodgers since Patrick Corbin on July 8, 2012.
The Dodgers try to avoid a second straight sweep on Sunday morning, with Chad Billingsley on the mound in the series finale. Jake Arrieta gets the start for Baltimore.
Saturday's Game 2 particulars
Home runs: Chris Davis (7), Manny Machado (2)
WP - Wei-Yin Chen (1-2): 6 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 4 walks, 2 strikeouts
LP - Josh Beckett (0-3): 5⅔ IP, 8 hits, 6 runs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts
Sv - Tommy Hunter (1): 3 IP, 3 hits, 1 walks, 2 strikeouts