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Simulating the Dodgers’ 2020 season: Games 12 and 13 vs. Cardinals

Walker Buehler and David Price take the mound for the Dodgers in a doubleheader against the Cardinals in Out of the Park Baseball 21.

MLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at Los Angeles Dodgers Richard MacksonUSA TODAY Sports

This is the eleventh installment of an ongoing series, where my dad and I will simulate each game on the Dodgers schedule until real Dodger baseball returns. Catch up on the rest of the series here! Thanks all for the comments and support!

Hello again! We took a day off yesterday, but we’re back today with a doubleheader to close out this series with the Cardinals. A reminder: this is a four-game series that so far stands at 2-0 Dodgers.

The pitching matchup for the first game: Walker Buehler (1-0, 2.08 ERA) and Carlos Martinez (1-0, 0.84 ERA).

It’s time for the games! Watch it here or scroll below to find out what happened. If you want to be notified when we go live with future simulations and chime in with your live feedback and/or input on manager decisions, follow me on Twitch!

After a six-game streak of fairly dominant wins to start the month of May left us feeling nigh unbeatable, things came crashing to reality in the first inning of the first game of this doubleheader. After a 1-2-3 top of the first for the Dodger offense, Buehler settled in to face the Cardinals’ offense. He got Kolten Wong to fly out to start the inning, and Matt Carpenter to ground the ball back to him. But Buehler couldn’t handle the groundball, bobbling it and allowing Carpenter to reach first on the error.

Paul Goldschmidt followed up with a single, and Paul DeJong popped out to second. Then, with two outs, Dexter Fowler, Harrison Bader and Brad Miller hit back-to-back-to-back home runs, opening up a 5-0 lead for the Cardinals in the first inning.

None of those five runs given up by Buehler were earned ... because of his own error.

The Dodgers were not able to come back from that massive of a deficit, mustering just one hit the whole game: a fifth inning solo home run by Joc Pederson, his fourth of the year.

Buehler finished the game with five innings pitched, six hits allowed, five runs (none earned), eight strikeouts and one walk for his first loss of the year. Caleb Ferguson pitched two scoreless innings in relief, while Dylan Floro gave up two runs in the eighth, making the final score 7-1 Cardinals.

Here’s the box score:

Game two of the doubleheader was much more of the pitchers battle we expected in the first one. David Price took the mound, looking for his third win in three Dodger starts, up against Dakota Hudson. Both took scoreless games through the seventh, and it was Joc Pederson once again who hit a solo home run in the seventh, making it 1-0 Dodgers.

In the top of the seventh, Cody Bellinger hit his seventh home run of the season, scoring Max Muncy and making the lead 3-0 Dodgers.

Price was fantastic once again, allowing seven hits, no runs and no walks with four strikeouts in seven innings pitched. Blake Treinen pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, and with a three-run lead heading into the ninth, we decided to give Kenley Jansen a rest and bring in Brusdar Graterol for his first save opportunity as a Dodger.

Graterol walked Matt Carpenter to open up the ninth, but rebounded to strike out Harrison Bader. Yadier Molina singled with one out, but Graterol drew a double play out of Austin Dean to secure the win, 3-0.

Here’s the box score:

So with that, the Dodgers move to 11-2, a half-game ahead of the Astros for the best record in baseball. Mookie Betts continues to struggle (.217/.276/.304), but Cody Bellinger (.306/.382/.776) and two home runs in the first two games of the series from Will Smith (.179/.220/.513) and two in the last two from Joc Pederson (.200/.213/.489) helped the Dodger bats overcome the absence of Corey Seager (.387/.444/.645).

Next: a three-game home stretch against the NL East-leading 8-4 Nationals, starting with Julio Urias (1-1, 2.19 ERA) against Patrick Corbin (1-0, 2.70 ERA). See you then!