It wasn’t the prettiest of games, but the Dodgers showed resilience in a very weird game, taking this one 2-1 against the Rockies, and securing a sweep of a three-game series at Dodger Stadium.
The story of any given start in a major league game is full of nuances. One can easily look at the final stat line, check out the metrics of every pitch and come to a pretty accurate conclusion on how that starter pitched on that given night.
However, there often are extenuating circumstances, other factors outside of the pitcher’s control that ultimately affect how he feels about that start. Whether it is fair or not, that’s another discussion, but frankly, it is that way and there isn’t a lot to be done about it, not in the moment at least.
The last two starters for the Dodgers have managed to keep the Rockies bats pretty quiet, and neither one is a regular member of the rotation. It demonstrates well how this Rockies offense has rather inadequate numbers outside of Coors Field. Their best hitter CJ Cron has a mere .678 OPS on the road.
Ryan Pepiot and Mitch White combined for 10⅔ innings allowing only a couple of runs, but unlike Pepiot who left yesterday’s ballgame getting handshakes from everyone as he left in line for the win with the Dodgers leading 4-1 at the time, Mitch White left after having given up his only run on an errant throw from Cody Bellinger in centerfield that allowed Kris Bryant to score from third.
White had not given up a hit through five innings, but left the game on the hook for the loss with the Dodgers down 1-0, and with a runner in scoring position. Roberts made the move with two outs to get Price to face Ryan McMahon, who ultimately grounded out to second base to end the frame.
White had a pretty good outing despite the four walks, but between giving up the first hit and run in his final inning of work, and also the lack of run support from the offense who failed to score a single run off José Ureña, debuting for the Rockies, while White was still pitching, one can understand that the Dodgers’ starter left the game with a sour taste in his mouth,
A crucial call came in the bottom of the seventh when Iglesias appeared to have missed Justin Turner with a tag at second base, but the call on the field was out and it ultimately stood. The Dodgers still rallied to tie the game on a wild pitch but would've surely taken the lead had Turner been called safe.
Ureña much like White left the start having allowed a run in his final inning, but for his debut with the Rockies, the six and two-thirds innings pitched with only one earned run are ultimately very impressive. Mookie Betts was up with two runners in scoring position, but reliever Jake Bird got him to ground out on a long at-bat.
In a game where neither team expected a masterful outing from its starter, both were pleasant surprises, and after seven, the score was tied at 1-1, and it would be up to both bullpens, to see who would blink first.
Neither offense actually drove in its first run, with the Rockies having scored on an errant throw and the Dodgers on a wild pitch with the bases loaded.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, Daniel Bard came in and gave up a leadoff single to Cody Bellinger, Gavin Lux bounced a grounder that had eyes, and Bellinger went from first to third with the ninth spot on the order up, Roberts pinch-hit Will Smith with the winning run at third.
Bud Black went out for a mound visit and subbed Garret Hampson in for Randall Grichuk to add another infielder. Bard walked Smith on a hard-fought battle, and Betts drove in the winning run for his walk-off hit as a Dodger on a squeaker that didn’t even leave the infield.
Bard caught a bad break in an inning in which the only hard-hit ball was the Bellinger single that opened the frame.
Home runs: none
WP — Craig Kimbrel (2-4): 3 up, 3 down
LP — Josh Bard (3-3): 0 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 1 walk
The Dodgers welcome the Cubs for a four-game series to wrap up this homestand before a final road trip to head into the All-Star break. Tony Gonsolin starts the series opener on Thursday (7:10 p.m., SportsNet LA), with Mark Leiter Jr. on the mound for Chicago.