There are many scenarios one can imagine for how a major league baseball game can turn out. But not many include a player getting his first career win and another getting his second three-inning save.
The Dodgers and Cardinals did not score any runs after the third inning and perhaps both teams were already thinking about their tasks remaining. But the Dodgers did win 4-1 to win the final two games of their series against the Cardinals.
Michael Grove was the Dodger star of the game. Grove pitched five impressive innings, giving up one run and three hits. Grove only had one walk along with three strikeouts. More impressive, Grove was able to work around a two-on and two-out situation and also an error that put a runner on third with just one out.
The Dodgers scored in the first inning when after Trea Turner walked, Freddie Freeman doubled him home to give the Dodgers an early lead. Will Smith dropped a fly ball single to put runners on first and third.
Adam Wainwright hit Justin Turner to load the bases and Max Muncy followed with a liner into Paul Goldschmidt’s glove for the second out. Joey Gallo worked the count and was awarded with a run-scoring walk to make it 2-0.
The Cardinals halved the lead when with two outs, Yadier Molina singled home Juan Yepez. But the Dodgers countered with their own two-out single from Will Smith to score Trea Turner.
Adam Wainwright again had runners in scoring in position in the third inning and as before, this time Cody Bellinger doubled home Joey Gallo for a 4-1 lead.
For Wainwright, this was his second shortest outing in his career against the Dodgers. Only in his first career start against the Dodgers on May 15, 2007, when Wainwright gave up 8 runs in 2⅔ innings pitched did Wainwright not pitch into the fourth inning. Prior to this start, Wainwright had a 2.62 ERA in 15 starts and 99⅔ against the Dodgers.
After Brusdar Graterol pitched a scoreless sixth inning, Andre Jackson was brought into the game in the seventh. Jackson, whose only other save was a three-inning version in Game 162 to end last season, repeated that event with another three-inning save as the Dodgers recorded their 106th win of the season.
Despite not their best week of baseball, the Dodgers did accomplish two of their remaining goals and moved closer to two more.
During their series against the Diamondbacks, the Dodgers secured a bye into the National League Divisional Series as one of the top two National League records. With today’s win, the Dodgers will now have the National League’s best record and will have home-field advantage throughout their National League playoffs.
By winning their 106th game, they have now tied the 2019 and 2021 teams with the most wins in franchise record. This time, the Dodgers did it in 153 games, in the other two times, the Dodgers won game numbered 162 to get that win. They will go on to play the Padres and Rockies to see if they can set a new record total of wins in a season.
The other remaining goal will be securing home-field advantage in the World Series. The Dodgers are now 106-47 and the Astros are 101-53. So while the math adds up to four, there is a way it is actually three but for now let’s just say it is four.
WP — Michael Grove (1-0): 5 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts
LP — Adam Wainwright (11-11): 3 IP, 6 hits, 4 runs, 3 walks, 1 strikeout
SV — Andre Jackson (1): 3 IP, 3 hits, 2 strikeouts
The Dodgers will take a short trip south to play the Padres for their last regular season road trip. The Padres will be looking to clinch their wild-card spot so the Dodgers will try to make sure that doesn’t happen while they are in town.
Tyler Anderson is set to go against Blake Snell at Petco Park. First pitch is set for 6:40 P.M. PDT and it will be on SportsNet LA.