Saturday night at Dodger Stadium provided a glimpse of a series of mirages. There was a stolen base that wasn’t, a home run that wasn’t, and a good baseball team that is playing nothing like it at the moment. The Dodgers were on the wrong end of yet another game with the Diamondbacks, falling 9-1 to continue an atrocious start to their 2018 season.
The Dodgers lost their third straight overall and their 11th consecutive regular season defeat at the hands of Arizona. The loss on Saturday also assured that the Dodgers will be without a series win in their first five series of the year.
A bizarre caught stealing of Chris Taylor in the first inning — when Taylor inexplicably pulled up as he approached second base after a tremendous jump, as if he thought the ball was dead. That neutered what could have been another scoring first inning for the Dodgers against Taijuan Walker.
The Dodgers got to Walker in the second, during which the pitcher from Yucaipa was visited by trainers but remained in the game to finish the frame, after allowing a run on a pair of hits.
Walker left after the second inning with right forearm tightness, but the Dodgers were held at bay with four scoreless frames by reliever T.J. McFarland, who picked up the win.
That 1-0 lead for the Dodgers evaporated quickly, with Rich Hill issuing a two-out walk in the third followed by a game-tying double by Ketel Marte then a two-run mammoth shot by Paul Goldschmidt, into the Loge level down the left field line.
Deven Marrero hit what appeared to be a three-run home run in the fourth. It went over the fence and everything, without dispute. But with Alex Avila waiting at first base to make sure, Marrero passed him on the bases and, upon appeal, was ruled out.
Here is Deven Marrero passing Alex Avila as he rounds first base. pic.twitter.com/N712vPJQyC— Nick Piecoro (@nickpiecoro) April 15, 2018
Instead of a three-run home run, Marrero by rule got a two-run single. In the end it didn’t really matter in the competitive aspect of Saturday’s game, with the Dodgers starting rotation throwing up a third consecutive dud.
Hill allowed seven runs on seven hits in his five innings, including two home runs, and given the actual results really allowed eight runs and three home runs. It was not good, just like Kenta Maeda wasn’t good on Friday night and Alex Wood wasn’t good on Wednesday night.
After posting a 2.03 ERA through the first 10 games of the season, Dodgers starting pitchers have allowed 19 runs (16 earned) on 19 hits in just 11⅓ innings over the last three games, all losses. That’s a 12.71 ERA, in case you were wondering.
To pile on, third baseman Logan Forsythe left the game with right shoulder discomfort in the top of the sixth inning after getting checked on by team trainer Nate Lucero. Forsythe left to get an MRI, per Dave Roberts.
When it rains, it pours.
At 4-9 the Dodgers matched their worst 13-game start since moving to Los Angeles, matching 1964, 1976, 1986 and 1994.
The Dodgers send Clayton Kershaw to the mound in Sunday’s series finale, a 1:10 p.m. PT start. Zack Godley starts for Arizona.
Home runs: Paul Goldschmidt (3), A.J. Pollock 2 (3), Alex Avila (1)
WP - T.J. McFarland (1-0): 4 IP, 2 hits, 1 strikeout
LP - Rich Hill (1-1): 5 IP, 7 hits, 7 runs, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts