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Dodgers shut down by Germán Márquez, Rockies in strikeout-heavy affair

MLB: Colorado Rockies at Los Angeles Dodgers Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

A sleepy Sunday saw plenty of strikeouts and very few runs at Dodger Stadium. The Rockies plated the bulk of them for a 4-1 win to send the Dodgers to their 49th loss of the season.

Los Angeles managed just three hits, two of them by Trayce Thompson. The two teams combined for 28 strikeouts, fifteen by the Dodgers.

The Dodgers are 10-6 against the Rockies this season. Colorado on Sunday became the only team to beat Los Angeles more than five times this year.

Tyler Anderson matched his career high with 10 strikeouts, and did so in just five innings. The left-hander also struck out ten once each in 2016 and 2017 while pitching for Colorado.

Anderson’s game is more limiting hard contact, entering Sunday best in the majors in hard-hit rate against (28.9 percent) and lowest average exit velocity (85 mph). It’s less about strikeouts, coming into his final regular season start 40th among 47 qualified pitchers with an 18.6-percent strikeout rate.

Which made his accumulation of whiffs so surprising on Sunday, especially with four or fewer strikeouts in nine of his previous 11 starts. Ten strikeouts Sunday matched Anderson’s best two-start stretch dating back to June 9.

Anderson induced 21 swinging strikes to match his season high, 20 coming on the fastball or changeup.

Anderson allowed just one hard-hit ball, a home run by Brendan Rogers in the first inning. Nine of Anderson’s 14 homers allowed this year have been solo shots. Colorado scored another run against him in the third inning when Ryan McMahon’s routine fly ball a little center of left field fell for an RBI double with Trayce Thompson playing more towards the left field line.

The veteran left-hander ends his regular season leading the Dodgers in innings pitched (178⅔), and currently ranks fifth in the National League with a 2.57 ERA.

German Márquez was just a notch above Anderson with an 18.8-percent strikeout rate coming into Sunday, though he’s fanned 230 in a season before. Just not this year, and his eight strikeouts also represented a season high.

He allowed only one hit in six innings, a dunker to right field by Trayce Thompson. That followed a walk to Gavin Lux, putting runners at the corners for Cody Bellinger whose drive was tracked down at the centerfield wall but was good for a sacrifice fly and the only run against Márquez.

Andre Jackson continued his impressive finishing kick to 2022, turning around a rough season. Through August, Jackson had a 5.27 ERA in 71⅔ innings in Triple-A, with nearly as many walks (60) as strikeouts (73).

In September, which includes one outing with Oklahoma City and four games with the Dodgers, the right-hander has a 1.32 ERA in 13⅔ innings, with five walks and 12 strikeouts.

That included four innings on Sunday in relief of Anderson. He didn’t allow a hit nor a run in the first three of those frames, but allowed a pair of runs in the ninth to widen the Rockies’ lead, one of them aided by Joey Gallo on a sun ball to open the inning, originally scored a three-base error but later changed to a triple.

Jackson’s stay this time in the majors will likely last just one day, as he was called up to soak innings to rest the bullpen and the Dodgers will activate Tony Gonsolin to start Monday. But it was a very good stint, and his September left a strong impression on his season.

Sunday particulars

Home run: Brendan Rogers (12)

WP — Germán Márquez (9-13): 6 IP, 1 hit, 1 run, 3 strikeouts, 8 strikeouts

LP — Tyler Anderson (15-5): 5 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 10 strikeouts

Sv — Daniel Bard (33): 2 IP, 2 hits, 6 strikeouts

Up next

The first half of the six-game series now complete, the Dodgers and Rockies are back at it again on Monday night (7:10 p.m.; SportsNet LA, MLB Network), with Tony Gonsolin making his first start in six weeks. José Ureña starts for Colorado.