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Tony Gonsolin makes spring debut, Dodgers walk home with another tie

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Dodgers at Los Angeles Angels
Freddie Freeman had one of the Dodgers’ 10 walks on Friday against the Angels
Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Tony Gonsolin made his first outing of spring training, called new teammate Noah Syndergaard a weird cat on TV, and the Dodgers came out of Tempe with a second straight tie, this time against the Angels.

Gonsolin worked around a double, two singles, and two walks, stranding everyone while recording seven outs in his first start of the year. He joined Julio Urías as the only Dodgers pitchers to go longer than two innings thus far in the spring.

Later in the game, Gonsolin was interviewed during the SportsNet LA telecast. Kirsten Watson asked about Syndergaard. “He seems like a little weird cat, but I can get along with that pretty nicely,” Gonsolin said with a smile.

Patience is a virtue

Miguel Vargas did not make the trip to Tempe, but his spirit lived on with the team against the Angels. But it hasn’t been just Vargas walking, as remarkable as his four free passes in eight plate appearances while not being allowed to swing has been.

The Dodgers have the highest walk rate in the majors this spring (16.2 percent), including a ten walks on Friday.

The bulk of the wildness came from Carlos Estévez, the longtime Rockies right-hander who joined the Angels bullpen after they made the money talk with a two-year, $13.5-million deal in December.

Estévez walked four of his five batters faced in the fourth inning, a true wild thing on the mound. The Dodgers gladly accepted the free money, scoring once while Estévez was in the game and again after he was lifted in favor of left-hander Kolton Ingram, one of the Angels’ young guns.

Dodgers batters were locked into the Angels’ cadence on Friday, with ten different Dodgers drawing a walk. It was a bad day on the block for Halos hurlers.

There weren’t any hot shots against Estévez, or any Angels pitcher on Friday, as none of the Dodgers’ batted balls reached terminal velocity, managing only three hits. But it was enough to score just enough for the Angels to tie things up with two outs and two strikes in the ninth inning.

Now all that’s left is the chase back to the west side of Phoenix, trying to beat traffic.

Up next

The Dodgers play their first night game of the spring on Saturday against the Royals in Surprise (5:05 p.m., SportsNet LA). Ryan Pepiot gets the call on the mound for Los Angeles, making his second appearance of the spring. Old friend Zack Greinke starts for Kansas City.