Back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning were enough to turn things around for the Dodgers, who rallied for three runs in the frame and a 5-3 win over the Rockies on Tuesday night at Dodger Stadium.
In the 2000 NBA Western Conference Finals, the Lakers were on the verge of blowing a 3-1 series lead, trailing the Trail Blazers 75-60 in the fourth quarter of Game 7, in Los Angeles. Veteran guard Brian Shaw hit a pair of long distance shots in the subsequent 15-0 run by the Lakers, including the game-tying three with four minutes left.
On Tuesday night at Dodger Stadium the stakes were nowhere near as high as they were 18 years ago at Staples Center, but it was Bryan Shaw once again in for a big three for Los Angeles.
Baseball’s Shaw, in the second season of a three-year, $27 million contract with Colorado, has been a workhorse, leading his league in appearances in three of the previous seasons, including pacing the majors twice. Tuesday night was Shaw’s major league-leading 27th appearance of 2018, in the Rockies’ 49th game.
Matt Kemp greeted Shaw in the sixth with a single, then one out later Chris Taylor flipped the game with a drive over the wall in left for a 4-3 Dodgers advantage. Yasiel Puig followed by crushing a slider deep into the pavilion for back-to-back home runs, and Puig’s fifth in his last eight games.
Shaw has allowed five home runs this season, matching his total for all of 2017.
Brock Stewart made his first major league start of the season, allowing a pair of runs in four innings, his longest outing in five weeks. He allowed a home run in the second and then three straight two-out hits in the third for his two runs.
Things looked promising for the Dodgers in the first inning against Rockies starter Chad Bettis, when a double by Justin Turner was followed with three straight balls hit at least 106 mph off the bat for one run, then walked twice for another run.
Bettis was taxed for 34 pitches in the first and trailed 2-0, but by the time he was out of the game Colorado was up a run, setting the stage for Shaw.
Ian Desmond homered off Stewart in the second inning, his eight of the season to surpass his entire 2017 total. Seven of his eight home runs this season are away from Coors Field.
Desmond, who at times has looked lost at the plate hitting just .180/.233/.377 this year, also singled home the go-ahead run in the top of the sixth, before the Dodgers rallied.
The Dodgers and Rockies finish off their series with the rubber game on Wednesday night, with Kenta Maeda starting against left-hander Kyle Freeland.
Home runs: Chris Taylor (6), Yasiel Puig (5); Ian Desmond (8)
WP - J.T. Chargois (2-1): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 run, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts
LP - Bryan Shaw (1-3): 1 IP, 3 hits, 3 runs
Sv - Kenley Jansen (9): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 strikeout