For the second time in four days, the Dodgers and Marlins needed an extra inning to solve things. The result was the same, with Los Angeles holding on for a 3-2 win on Monday to take three out of four in the wraparound weekend series.
The Dodgers cashed in their free runner to start the 10th, thanks to an infield single by Trea Turner and a fielder’s choice groundout by Freddie Freeman. The single was Turner’s 1,000th career hit and second of the night. Turner now has 161 hits this season, second only to 163 for Freeman, who also had two hits on Monday.
Turner is the 1,372nd player to record 1,000 major league hits, and at the moment is tied with old friend Jamey Carroll on the all-time hit list.
The Dodgers only had two hits after the fourth inning, both by Turner, but still managed to win.
Craig Kimbrel was in the midst of one of his best stretches of the season, striking out two in a spotless ninth, his third straight 1-2-3 inning, all over the last nine days. After a 14-pitch ninth, Kimbrel was asked to pitch the 10th, too, which did not go as smoothly.
Kimbrel ran the count full to his three batters of the inning, walking Jon Berti and JJ Bleday. In between, a Brian Anderson groundout might have been a double play if not for Chris Taylor, playing just his seventh game at second base this season after offseason elbow surgery, threw high to first base.
Dave Roberts turned to Chris Martin with one out and the bases loaded, clinging to a one-run lead. Martin delivered, striking out Garrett Cooper looking and getting Jacob Stallings to pop out meekly to first base to end it.
Martin, who was brought in a double-switch to warm Roberts’ National League heart because they already moved the designated hitter to a different position earlier in the game, is the eighth Dodgers pitcher to record a save this season.
The 2023 World Baseball Classic, played from March 11-21, will feature three rounds at loanDepot Park in Miami, including the second round and championship games. So it’s only right that a pair of Team USA players got some good practice in at the stadium.
Mookie Betts homered in each of the first three games of the series against the Marlins, and his four-homer weekend fueled his fourth career player of the week honor. Betts was named to Team USA last Thursday, and on Monday his Dodgers teammate Will Smith officially joined the squad.
The Dodgers catcher turned around a fastball 415 feet to straightaway center for a two-run home run in the third inning, his 19th of the season. That gave the Dodgers at least one home run from a Team USA member in all four games of the series.
All five such home runs from Betts and Smith featured them shaking hands with Dino Ebel, who will also coach third base for Team USA.
Smith’s homer provided the only two runs in six innings against Marlins starter Pablo López, a rumored Dodgers target before this year’s trade deadline.
Pressed into fill-in duty Monday after scheduled starting pitcher Tony Gonsolin was placed on the injured list with right forearm inflammation, Michael Grove had his best major league outing to date. He pitched 4⅔ innings and struck out four. Grove allowed a pair of runs, fueled by a leadoff double in the first inning that took a weird hop past Freddie Freeman and a fourth-inning triple just out of the reach of a leaping Joey Gallo in right field.
Grove threw 16 sliders and finished off outs on eight of them, including three of his four strikeouts.
Perhaps most importantly, Grove walked only one, after his first two major league appearances saw more walks (four) than strikeouts (three). Since getting sent down to Triple-A for the second time this season, Grove had a 6.7-percent walk rate in eleven games, an improvement from 11.4 percent in his first six minor league outings this season.
Home run: Will Smith (19)
WP — Craig Kimbrel (4-5): 1⅓ IP, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts
LP — Huascar Brazobán (0-1): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 unearned run, 1 strikeout
Sv — Chris Martin (1): ⅔ IP, 1 strikeout
The Dodgers move on to New York, where they face the division-leading Mets in a battle of the teams with the top two records in the National League. Andrew Heaney starts the series opener on Tuesday night (4:10 p.m. PT; SportsNet LA, TBS), with right-hander Taijuan Walker on the mound for the Mets.