The Dodgers lost 5-1 to the Mariners, on a Wednesday night where the offense couldn’t get much of anything going, and beyond Ryan Pepiot, Dave Roberts gave a rest to all of his relievers with a fighting chance to make the opening day roster.
Tonight’s game served as a contrast of how development particularly on the pitching side of things varies so much, as it put forth two 25-year-old right-handers in very different moments in their big league career, and with results to back that up.
On one side, the Mariners’ George Kirby is getting ready for his sophomore campaign after a bedazzling rookie year, rooted in the pinpoint command of his fastball which is really the backbone of his entire arsenal.
On the Dodgers’ side of things, Pepiot is another twenty-five-year-old, but one still looking to find his footing in the big leagues. Pepiot is battling for the final spot in the Dodgers rotation.
Kirby’s spotless outing
For roughly two-thirds of this game, the M’s pitching staff didn’t allow a hit, and that was due to Kirby taking full advantage of a Dodgers’ lineup missing some of its primary names, in Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman, and J.D. Martinez.
Nevertheless, it was not as though there were no regulars on the field, with Max Muncy, Miguel Vargas, Trayce Thompson, and others, all starting.
Yet, Kirby breezed through the night, tossing five scoreless innings in which the only baserunner came aboard via walk, with nine of his 15 outs recorded by strikeout.
Pepiot’s control issues make him constantly pitch in a tight rope
The Dodgers starter allowed three runs over four and two-thirds, but even that might not quite so accurately reflect the trouble he was in for most of the night, as he allowed seven baserunners with five hits and a couple of walks, pushing his tally on this spring to five free passes in a little under 14 frames.
All the scoring for Seattle came by the bat of phenom Julio Rodríguez, who drove in the three runs with a pair of doubles in the third and fifth inning.
It is worth noting that two of the three earned runs that went to Pepiot’s final line, came after he left the game in the fifth inning, and Dave Roberts handed the ball to Keegan Curtis with runners on second and third, and the aforementioned J-Rod up at the plate.
Defensive play of the night
James Outman continues to make his case for a spot on the opening day roster, and tonight he flashed some leather, gunning down Kolten Wong on a missile to third base.
Through much of spring, it has seemed like an uphill battle for Outman to carve a role with this team on opening day, but that hasn’t prevented nor derailed him from doing his best to force the team’s hand.
Following Pepiot a flurry of bullpen arms
After the Dodgers’ starter left the game, here are the relievers that came into the game in this order: Keegan Curtis, Tayler Scott, Tyler Cyr, Jake Pilarski, and Jordan Leasure.
They combined for four and a third, allowing another air of runs, on top of the two inherited runners, Curtis allowed to score.
The Dodgers head back to Salt River Fields for the second time in four days, this time to play the Diamondbacks on Thursday (1:10 p.m., SportsNet LA). Michael Grove starts for Los Angeles.