Never leave a Dodgers game early ... really.
The Dodgers were down 1-0 headed into the bottom half of the fifth inning and then the game was tied at two during the seventh inning stretch. The boys in blue exploded for a 5-run seventh to regain and retain the lead.
Although the Dodgers eventually found their rhythm, this didn’t happen until late in the game. Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell completely dominated against LA for the first two innings and Oliver Drake didn’t let up for the next two innings, either. Together, the two struck out six batters and denied a base runner for four innings. Dominance.
On the Dodgers side, they decided to go with a more unconventional route by using an opener. Caleb Ferguson was tasked with this job, and though he did get out of the first inning with no incident, he did give up one run in the second inning via a sacrifice fly.
Julio Urias and Ross Stripling pitched a few scoreless innings combined (one and two innings, respectively) before Pedro Baez blew the 1-run lead with a solo homer to Ji-Man Choi to make the score 2-2 in the top of the sixth inning.
Once the Rays turned to the rest of their bullpen, the Dodgers were able to find their groove. This is when Corey Seager flipped his switch.
With Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy both in scoring position, Seager hit a ground-rule double, bringing in both base runners and putting them up 2-1. There was nothing for the offense in the sixth inning, but Seager came up for his next at-bat and it was almost déjà vu — with two runners in scoring position, he hit a double to bring home two runs. This was his fourth RBI of the night.
Gavin Lux, A.J. Pollock and Cody Bellinger all collected RBIs to finish off the Dodgers 5-run inning. Turns out the Dodgers really needed this cushion, since the Rays weren’t finished on offense.
Tampa Bay struck back with three more runs in the top of the eighth inning against Kenta Maeda. After a pair of hits scored a run, Maeda allowed a homer to Jesus Aguilar to cut the Dodgers’ lead to two. The game was handed off to Kenley Jansen after this home run.
Jansen pitched 1 1⁄3 perfect innings, striking out two on his way to save No. 30 of the year.
WP: Kenta Maeda (10-8), 1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 1 K
LP: Peter Fairbanks (1-3), 1⁄3 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
Sv: Kenley Jansen (30), 1 1⁄3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K
Home runs: Jesus Aguilar (12)
The Dodgers look to take the two-game series sweep tomorrow afternoon during the early evening game. Tony Gonsolin will get the nod to face Brendan McKay.