This is the 25th 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!
Welcome back! After splitting the first two games of this three-game road trip against the Padres, we return for the rubber match, as David Price (5-1, 2.97 ERA) takes on Jacob Nix (3-1, 2.73 ERA).
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 managerial decisions, follow me on Twitch!
The Dodgers took an early lead in this one, with two hits off of Nix in the top of the first. Mookie Betts led off the game with a single, and with two outs stole second. On an 0-2 count, Justin Turner hit a single up the middle, scoring Betts and giving the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.
The Padres brought it back in the bottom of the first against Price, however. Tommy Pham led off with a double, and Wil Myers singled him to third. Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a deep fly ball to center, scoring Pham and tying the game.
The score remained 1-1 until the bottom of the third, when Myers and Tatis Jr. struck again. Myers led off the inning with a single on the first pitch, and on the very next pitch Tatis Jr. hit 392-foot blast to left field, taking a 3-1 Padres lead with the two-run home run.
In the top of the fourth, the Dodgers brought one back when Max Muncy hit a home run of his own, a solo shot to right field to make it 3-2. It was Muncy’s sixth home run of the season, but only his ninth RBI.
The score remained 3-2 until the top of the fifth. Gavin Lux led off the inning with a single, and David Price bunted him to second. Mookie Betts flew out to left for the second out, but Corey Seager singled through the infield, scoring Lux and tying the game 3-3.
The Dodgers then took the lead in the top of the sixth, when Justin Turner led off with a double, advanced to third on a Max Muncy ground out, and scored on an RBI single by Joc Pederson. The next inning, an RBI single by Cody Bellinger scored Mookie Betts (who hit his second double of the game earlier in the inning), and the score was 5-3 Dodgers.
With Price still on the mound in the seventh, the Padres brought one back. Jurickson Profar hit a pinch-hit double with one out, and two batters later, Wil Myers singled him home to cut the lead to 5-4.
Pedro Baez relieved Price in the bottom of the seventh, getting the last out in that inning and retiring all three batters he faced in the eighth. Then came the ninth.
Pinch hitter Matt Beaty led off the top of the ninth by getting hit by a pitch. After Mookie Betts struck out and a wild pitch advanced Beaty to second, Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger both walked to load the bases with one out. With Kenley Jansen a little tired (and definitely not in top pitching form), this was a great opportunity for the Dodger bats to provide a little cushion for either Brusdar Graterol or Blake Treinen in the bottom half of the inning.
Instead, Justin Turner struck out, and Max Muncy grounded out, leaving the score 5-4 Dodgers as we went to the bottom of the ninth.
After much discussion, we went with Graterol, yet to give up a run this season, to start the ninth. After he walked both Greg Garcia and Trent Grisham to lead off the inning, we began to regret this decision. Because of the new pitcher usage rules, he had to face one more batter, and struck out Francisco Mejia for the first out of the inning. That strike out gave us some returned confidence in Graterol ... confidence that we would later regret.
Tommy Pham singled to the right side, scoring Garcia to tie the game. We brought in Blake Treinen with runners on first and second with one out to try and get out of it, but he gave up a walk-off single to Wil Myers, ending the game and the series with a 6-5 dramatic Padres victory.
Here’s the box score:
Another rough one, folks! The Dodgers remain in second place in the NL West and first in the Wild Card race at 21-12. The Diamondbacks are now 1½ games ahead in the division, while the Padres trail us by the exact same margin.
Next time out: we’ll be taking a ground-up look at our lineup and pitching staff, to see if there are any changes we need to make. After that, we open up a three-game series against the 16-19 Cubs, with Julio Urias (2-2, 3.60 ERA) taking the mound in Game 1 against Tyler Chatwood (1-3, 5.34 ERA). See you then!