The Dodgers used eight relief pitchers in eight innings in a 3-2 loss to the Angels on Thursday night in Anaheim to open the Freeway Series. But perhaps the biggest relief was that outfielder Yasiel Puig wasn't seriously hurt in his collision with Howie Kendrick in the fifth inning.
Puig was removed as a precaution after getting hit in the face, per Alanna Rizzo of SportsNet LA.
Seven of the 11 relief pitchers vying for a spot in the Dodgers bullpen got work on Thursday night, and all recorded three outs. Of the seven, only Sergio Santos allowed a run, a home run to Mike Trout in the first inning.
The Dodgers even had room for Josh Ravin to pitch an inning. Ravin, who was reassigned to minor league camp on March 14, pitched the fourth inning and started the fifth, facing one batter. He allowed two runs. That the 27-year-old Ravin was used in the game wasn't necessarily an indication that Ravin is still alive for an opening day roster spot, but at the very least the club will likely consider him later in the season should a need arise.
Joc Pederson drove home the Dodgers' first run of the night with a fourth-inning double, but his play of the night came on defense.
In the bottom of the second inning, Pederson ran down a sinking line drive by Erick Aybar, caught the ball then went into a somersault, then lost the ball but quickly caught it again for the highlight of the game.
Fly ball so nice he caught it twice. pic.twitter.com/utyRA0W7Ck— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) April 3, 2015
The four relief pitchers in camp who didn't get work on Thursday were Yimi Garcia, David Huff, David Aardsma and Juan Nicasio. One might expect all those bullpen candidates to get work in on Friday night after Brandon McCarthy pitches his three innings or so to start.
Darwin Barney doubled in the eighth inning, his third consecutive plate appearance with an extra-base hit. He has six hits in his last seven at-bats, including three doubles and a triple.