LOS ANGELES —- Some timely two-out hits and a solid start by Brandon McCarthy produced the 6-3 win over the Miami Marlins on Sunday at Dodger Stadium.
McCarthy was making his second start since coming back from the disabled list and he was much better than his last start on Monday in San Francisco. Today, McCarthy pitched six innings and gave up a run and three hits. He also had five strikeouts.
McCarthy was removed after making 75 pitches but that didn’t bother him after the game.
“I have no idea where I am at any point of the game,” McCarthy said, “it is all kind of relative, there’s days when seventy five feels like a hundred twenty and when a hundred feels like seventy and I don’t where I am at, I don’t ever really look.”
“I don’t beg, I trust the manager in those situations, I don’t like to campaign for or against.”
Manager Dave Roberts said he had no second thoughts about taking out McCarthy.
“I feel with the off day coming tomorrow,” Roberts said, “for Luis to go out there and throw ten pitches it is not a big deal, for Fields to face a hitter and for me, counting outs, and I like when pitchers have an outing where they can feel good about it and build on it.”
The Dodgers jumped out in front in the first inning. WIth two out and none on, Cody Bellinger singled and then Yasmani Grandal went the other way with a liner down the left field line that banged against the low wall in foul territory. That put runners on second and third.
The runners were not there too long as Adrian Gonzalez scorched a double to right to score them and the Dodgers had a 2-0 lead.
In the fourth, Joc Pederson hit his second home run of the season, a solo shot, to make it 3-0.
Brandon McCarthy retired the first 14 Marlins in a row before Derek Dietrich went the other way for a two-out double to left. A.J. Ellis followed with a nicely placed bloop single that scored Dietrich to make it 3-1.
For a while, this play by Chase Utley looked like it could be really big, instead it is just a daily defensive highlight for the Dodgers.
Vance Worley pitched four innings and gave up three runs and six hits. Worley had made eight starts for the Marlins AAA affiliate in New Orleans this season before being called up for this start.
Left-handed pitcher Jarlin Garcia came in for Worley to start the fifth inning. With two outs, Grandal stroked his second double of the game, collecting third hit overall, this time right-handed. Gonzalez followed with his third hit of the day, a single to left-center that scored Grandal and re-established the three-run lead at 4-1.
In the sixth, after McCarthy struck out pinch-hitter Ichiro Suzuki, Dee Gordon slapped a double down the left-field line and then Christian Yelich drew the first walk of the day. Ozuna grounded out to put runners on second and third, bringing Giancarlo Stanton to the plate.
Stanton worked the count to 3 and 2 and then hit a ground ball to the well-positioned Corey Seager who threw him out to end of the inning.
McCarthy had been rolling for most of the game so when he had some runners on base late in the game, he said he did have to focus a little more since he had not been in the stretch that much.
“You’re trying to really focus and you realize it is not really not coming as easy, they are starting to battle,” McCarthy said, “it is a situation that you are really needed to get through.”
In the bottom of the inning, Joc Pederson was hit by a pitch and Kiké Hernandez doubled off Dietrich’s glove to put two runners in scoring position. Brett Eibner pinch-hit for McCarthy and he singled off Dietrich’s glove to make the score 6-1.
Luis Avilan came in to start the seventh inning and retired both Marlins he faced. Josh Fields followed and got A.J. Ellis to fly out.
Pedro Baez took his turn in the eighth inning and after two were out, Gordon singled and Yelich walked. After Marcell Ozuna singled home Gordon, Baez got Stanton to pop out to third.
Roberts did say after the game that he has lot of faith in Baez and that Stanton was the last hitter for Baez. “I wanted Kenley just to be there if needed,” Roberts said, “so that was a big out for Petey.”
Yasiel Puig did pinch-hit for Baez in the eighth and struck out. Later, with two out, Utley singled and on a 3-0 pitch to Seager, Utley took off but it didn’t matter because Seager walked. Bellinger struck out to end the threat.
Kenley Jansen came in with a four-run lead and gave up a solo home run to Justin Bour. Dietrich then singled but A.J. Ellis popped up and then J.T. Riddle hit into a double play to end the game.
The Dodgers will have an off-day on Monday and then on Tuesday, they will start a three-game home series against the St. Louis Cardinals. The 7:10 p.m. PT start will have Clayton Kershaw for the Dodgers and Lance Lynn starts for the Cardinals.
Home runs: Joc Pederson (2), Justin Bour (11)
WP - Brandon McCarthy (4-1): 6 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts
LP - Vance Worley (0-1): 4 IP, 6 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 1 home run