In the rubber match of the three game series between the Dodgers and the Mets, where the Dodgers had sleepily lost the first game and then dominated the second, the Dodgers sent Hyun-Jin Ryu to the mound for a late afternoon Chavez Ravine start.
Ryu started out well enough, being perfect through the first three innings. That little dream ended quickly in the fourth. He gave up two quick hits, had a third hit bounce off his cleat, and the first Mets’ run came in to score. Then came a shallow pop fly, fielded and thrown home perfectly by Joc Peterson, who was out in left field. Grandal pulled a Grandal, and couldn’t hold on to the ball. A sure-fire out became the second Mets run. Instead of being out of the inning, the Mets got an extra at bat and picked up an extra run. It was now 3-0 New York.
Max Muncy got the Dodgers on the board in their half of the fourth, with a screaming shot to the top of the left-field pavilion. Measured at 430 feet, believed to be his furthest hit home run to date. The Dodgers were now within one run, down 2-3.
The Mets came right back at Ryu in the fifth, with two straight hits. Suddenly Ryu couldn’t get anybody out. When the smoke cleared, it was Mets up 5-2. In fairness, I can’t really see it was all review. The Mets got a couple of seeing eye singles out of that inning, and I just can’t emphasize enough the two runs that scored because Grandal couldn’t hold on to a perfectly thrown ball.
Ryu got into a bases-loaded jam in the sixth, but picked up at double play and escaped further damage. The Dodgers still had enough innings to come back – but could the Dodgers’ bullpen shut them down?
That question was answered quickly when Ryan Madson replaced Ryu in the seventh. The Dodgers continued to play sloppy in the field and pitch horribly from the mound. The Dodgers went into the seventh inning stretch down 7-2.
Cody Bellinger gave the home crowd reason to cheer in the bottom of the seventh with a solo home run, bringing the Dodgers within four.
The score remained 7-3 until the ninth, when Kenley Jansen appeared for what will probably be the last time until the Dodgers are on the other side of the series in Colorado. Earlier today, the team cardiologist recommended Jansen not make the trip to the mile-high city.
Kenley made quick work of the Mets, and the Dodgers went quietly in their half of the inning. They silently gathered their gear from the dugout and shuffled their way to the clubhouse with hats and heads held low.
The good news is the Mets are gone, and the Dodgers are headed for Colorado. That’s good, right?