LOS ANGELES —— The Dodgers and Cubs played home run derby on Sunday at Dodger Stadium and the Dodgers came out on top with the 9-4 win. Seven home runs were hit between both teams and the Dodgers hit four of them.
The win gave the Dodgers a three-game sweep and their eighth win in the just concluded ten-game home stand. The last time the Dodgers had a three-game sweep against the Cubs at home was in August 2012.
Of course, you don’t expect all of those home runs in a game that had Clayton Kershaw and Jon Lester as the starters. But it was apparent early that neither of those two were sharp and both had early exits from the game.
However the Dodger bullpen was able to pick up for Kershaw and on a day and they slammed the door on the Cubs. They recorded the final 14 outs and did so facing 15 batters.
The derby began when Wilson Contreras led off the second inning and celebrated a 12-pitch at-bat by hitting his fifth home run of the season and the Cubs scored their first run of the series.
Trailing for the first time this series, Kiké Hernandez walked and Austin Barnes singled to right. After attempting to bunt the first pitch he saw, Cody Bellinger hit his tenth home run of the season to make it 3-1 Dodgers.
David Ross takes a second runner-up this week. He was previous fastest Dodger to 10 career HR (44 games). Cody Bellinger just did it in 31— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) May 28, 2017
One inning later, Kiké Hernandez hit the second three-run home run in this game off Lester and the Dodgers now led 6-1. However that lead was lessened by three in the fourth when Javier Baez hit a solo home run and Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run shot to make the score 6-4.
Lester was the first starting pitching to exit as he left with two runners on and one out in the fourth. The Dodgers would not score so Lester finished the game going 3⅓ innings and giving up seven hits and six runs. Lester walked two and struck out three.
Kershaw started the fifth inning and Addison Russell greeted him with a long single to right center. Almora hit a grounder up the middle and Kershaw deflected it toward third which meant an infield single.
Pitcher Mike Montgomery, who had relieved Lester, sacrificed successfully and that was all for Kershaw as a Josh Fields took the ball. Kershaw pitched 4⅓ innings, he gave up 4 runs and 11 hits. He struck out six and walked two. Fields struck out Baez and Bryant to end the threat.
Austin Barnes would then extend the lead back to three with a two-out solo shot to left field.
Fields went out and pitched a scoreless sixth inning with the help of a fantastic catch by Puig. Puig ran all the way to wall down the right field side and he caught the ball as hit the wall.
In the seventh, Sergio Romo followed Fields and retired both hitters he faced, striking out one and getting a groundout from the other. Adam Liberatore, who was just activated from the disabled list, made his first appearance since May 8th and got pinch-hitter Kyle Schwarber to ground out to first.
Yasiel Puig, who is struggling to hit fastballs, hit a Hector Rondon 86 MPH flat breaking ball into the pavilion for a two-run homer and the Dodgers led 9-4 after seven.
Kenley Jansen, who had not pitched since Tuesday night, was brought in to finish up and he retired all three batters he faced.
The Dodgers hit the road and they open a four-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Memorial Day game is set to begin at 11:15 a.m. PT and will have Rich Hill going against Mike Leake.
Home runs: Wilson Contreras (5), Cody Bellinger (10), Kiké Hernandez (4), Javier Baez (8), Anthony Rizzo (12), Austin Barnes (2), Yasiel Puig (9)
WP - Josh Fields (2-0): 1⅔ IP, 2 strikeouts
LP - Jon Lester (3-3): 3⅓ IP, 7 hits, 6 runs, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts