The Dodgers widened their advantage in the National League West to 2½ games over San Diego, and lowered their magic number to clinch the division to nine.
Gonsolin only struck out two but was efficient with 90 pitches in seven innings, matching the longest start by a Dodgers pitcher this season. Gonsolin induced ground ball outs, included two he fielded himself and recorded the out at first base unassisted, plus an infield pop up that Gonsolin caught.
“Tony is awesome. We love when he takes the ball. He’s a competitor. He’s got four quality pitches and really knows how to move the ball around,” Justin Turner said. “Just another outstanding start for him.”
Gonsolin also walked none, the sixth time in seven outings this season Gonsolin has walked zero or one batter.
“With this team, I think every series is important at this point,” Gonsolin said on a conference call. “I know we want to go out there and get on a roll, and get into a rhythm heading into the playoffs.”
After a night when the Dodgers struggled to get much going against starter Dinelson Lamet, who retired his final 12 batters faced in seven strong innings, LA’s offense threatened all night Tuesday against Zach Davies, who went six but only had one clean inning on the night.
In a game he was designated to hit, Justin Turner was in the middle of the Dodgers’ first two rallies. A Turner single drove home Mookie Betts in the first inning, then Turner had the first of three straight two-out singles in the third.
Turner added another hit in the fifth inning, a 106.4-mph ball to the wall in left field that would have been a double most times, just not on his first night back from a hamstring strain. So Turner settled for his third single.
“We told him to just put the governor on and be smarter,” manager Dave Roberts said after the game. “It’s more the net of getting him into the lineup, taking at-bats to get his timing down as we get to the postseason. As long as we can end with a net positive each day, he’ll continue to get better.”
Edwin Ríos added a solo shot in the fifth inning to widen the advantage to 3-1. It was the first home run since August 4 for Ríos, who was 5-for-33 (.152) in between long balls. Eight of Ríos’ 10 hits this season are for extra bases.
Caleb Ferguson started the eighth inning with a three-pitch strikeout of Jurickson Profar, but on the third pitch grimaced in pain on the mound, and immediately left the game with a trainer, suffering an elbow injury. Ferguson is headed back to Los Angeles for an MRI exam.
Blake Treinen recorded the final two outs of the eighth inning. Kenley Jansen loaded the bases with one out in the ninth, but converted his first save opportunity since Saturday’s meltdown with back-to-back strikeouts of Wil Myers and Jake Cronenworth to end it.
“They signed me for a reason: to win the championship. It’s been a long time, and these fans deserve it,” Jansen told Alanna Rizzo on the SportsNet LA broadcast. “If that’s what it takes to put that pressure on and get motivated every day, that’s the goal. It didn’t look nice today, but tomorrow I’ll get back to work and grind, to focus on bringing that championship here.”
Home run: Edwin Ríos (4)
WP — Tony Gonsolin (1-1): 7 IP, 4 hits, 1 run, 2 strikeouts
LP — Zach Davies (7-3): 6 IP, 8 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts
Sv — Kenley Jansen (11): 1 IP, 2 hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
Dustin May gets the call in Wednesday afternoon’s series finale (1:10 p.m.; SportsNet LA, plus an ESPN broadcast that won’t be available locally). Adrian Morejon starts for San Diego.