The Dodgers are 0-1 without Freddie Freeman in the lineup. After coming back from a 2-0 deficit and taking the lead in the tenth inning, the Dodgers came one out away from victory but fell to the Arizona Diamondbacks, 5-3.
Chris Taylor singled on the third pitch of the game, but the offense was incredibly quiet the first time through the order. The Dodgers’ next hit would not come until the fourth inning. The D-backs offense wasted no time getting going, hitting one-out solo home runs in both the first and second innings, one from Daulton Varsho and one from Corbin Carroll.
As previously mentioned, the Dodgers’ second hit of the game did not come until the fourth inning. It was a big one. Will Smith led off the fourth inning with his twenty-second home run of the year, a 465 foot bomb, the Dodgers’ longest of the season and fourth longest of the last five seasons. The next hitter was Trayce Thompson who sent a 2-2 changeup 445 feet to tie the game at 2-2.
Michael Grove got the start for the Dodgers and delivered arguably the best appearance of his short big-league career. The home runs by Varsho and Carroll were the only two hits Grove allowed, as he reached a career high in both innings (five) and pitches thrown (seventy-seven).
After Grove’s five innings, Dave Roberts handed the ball to Chris Martin, who delivered a seven pitch scoreless sixth inning. Next man up in the bullpen was Tommy Kahnle who made his first big-league appearance since May 13. Kahnle threw a twelve pitch inning that featured two strikeouts, a very promising sight to see. Alex Vesia, whose season ERA is now down to 2.27, threw a scoreless eighth inning which also featured two strikeouts of his own. Vesia has not allowed a run in his last twenty outings.
The bottom of the ninth inning is where things started to really get wacky. Still tied at 2-2, Roberts handed the ball to Evan Phillips, who has probably been his best reliever all year long. Jake McCarthy singled to left on the first pitch of the inning and proceeded to steal second base on the next pitch. The D-backs were in business.
Phillips induced two groundouts and McCarthy, the potential winning run, found himself stuck on third base with two outs. After a 1-0 pitch that Corbin Carroll swung through to make the count 1-1, McCarthy broke to home plate as soon as Austin Barnes released the baseball to throw it back to Phillips. Phillips got the ball back to Barnes about as quickly as he could, and McCarthy was called out. After the D-backs had a runner on second base with no outs, the Dodgers had escaped the jam… hopefully.
Jake McCarthy gets thrown out trying to steal home for the win pic.twitter.com/CQBE49KuVH— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) September 15, 2022
D-backs manager Torey Lovullo challenged the call at the plate and asked the umpires to look at whether Austin Barnes was blocking the plate. After a lengthy review (which I personally didn’t feel too good about), the call was upheld.
Old friend Reyes Moronta threw the tenth inning for Arizona. Hanser Alberto attempted to lay down what he believed was a sacrifice bunt, however Ketel Marte did not cover first base and instead was halfway up the line between first base and the cut of the outfield grass. Alberto reached and the Dodgers had runners on the corners with no outs. Moronta gifted the Dodgers a run with a wild pitch that scored Barnes and put the Dodgers ahead 3-2. Despite having a runner on second and no outs once again, the Dodgers were unable to put anything else on the board.
Roberts called on Craig Kimbrel to shut the door. After walking Carroll to put the winning run on base, Kimbrel bounced back to strike out Alek Thomas on three pitches and get a groundout. With two outs and runners on second and third, Sergio Alcantara sent Kimbrel’s 2-1 fastball over the wall in right field for a three-run walk off homer.
Dodgers lose 5-3.
You can’t win them all, especially when Mookie, Trea, Freddie, and JT have planned off days.
Home runs: Will Smith (22), Trayce Thompson (8); Daulton Varsho (25), Corbin Carroll (3), Sergio Alcantara (5)
WP — Reyes Moronta (1-0): 1 inning, 1 hit, 1 run, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
LP — Craig Kimbrel (4-6): 0.2 inning, 1 hit, 3 runs, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
The Dodgers are off tomorrow before heading north to San Francisco to begin a three game series with the Giants.