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Dodgers waste Kenta Maeda gem in loss to Rockies

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers offense stayed quiet, a familiar refrain all season, and wasted a stellar pitching performance by Kenta Maeda in a 1-0 loss to the Rockies in Wednesday night's homestand finale at Dodger Stadium.

Ten hits was all the Dodgers could manage in the three-game series, during which they were held scoreless for 24 of the 27 innings.

Maeda set a new high for strikeouts with nine, and was generally cruising into the seventh, but despite his third straight very good start his demise was brought by a dunker to center field.

Gerardo Parra doubled with one out in the seventh in a 0-0 tie, but Maeda got Nick Hundley to fly out for the second out of the inning. That brought a visit to the mound by manager Dave Roberts, only he wasn't bringing a hook. Roberts went out to talk with Maeda, but also didn't bring interpreter Will Ireton to the mound with him so he signaled back to the dugout for Ireton to come to the mound.

That signal triggered southpaw Adam Liberatore to start jogging in from the bullpen, thinking his number was called. But amid the confusion he was sent back before he got to the infield, and Maeda allowed to stay in to face the left-handed and light-hitting Daniel Descalso, who homered on Tuesday night.

This time though Descalso dumped one in to short center field, a 251-foot single that landed in front of Trayce Thompson to score Parra for the game's only run.

It made a hard luck loser of Maeda, who surpassed his previous season high of eight strikeouts, set on Apr. 23, also against the Rockies. In 13 innings against Colorado this season, Maeda has allowed one run on eight hits and two walks, with 17 strikeouts.

Three of those strikeouts for Maeda were Carlos Gonzalez, who was 0-for-4 with four strikeouts on the night, his second straight game with four strikeouts. In the series, Gonzalez, who entered the series with eight home runs in his last 10 games, was 1-for-12 against the Dodgers, with one walk and 10 strikeouts.

Chris Rusin made the one run hold up over six innings, and the bullpen did the rest. Rusin was really only challenged in the fifth inning, when a hit, walk and an error loaded the bases with one out, but Kike Hernandez struck out and Justin Turner grounded out to end the threat.

Carlos Estevez, who suffered the loss in giving up the walk-off home run to Trayce Thompson on Tuesday night, requited himself quite nicely on Wednesday. He allowed another hit to Thompson, this time a single, but struck out the other three batters he faced in the inning.

Up next

The Dodgers are off Thursday, then start a three-game series Friday night in San Francisco, trying to chisel down their four-game deficit in the National League West. In the series opener, Clayton Kershaw starts for the Dodgers, and Johnny Cueto goes for the Giants.

Wednesday particulars

Home runs: none

WP - Chris Rusin (2-4): 6 IP, 3 hits, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts

LP - Kenta Maeda (5-4): 6⅔ IP, 5 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 9 strikeouts

Sv - Jake McGee (15): 3 up, 3 down