Dodgers Sweep Pirates on Independence Day

The fireworks started early at Dodger Stadium this holiday season. The Dodgers hit ten home runs in their three game series against the bucks. They also scored 32 runs in the series off a beleaguered Pittsburgh staff. They didn’t hit any long balls on the fourth of July, but still scored six runs in a 6-4 win to sweep the Bucs on Independence Day. Who says the Dodgers only score from hitting home runs?

Rich Hill took the hill on Wednesday for the Dodgers. He had an interesting outing to say the least. He limited the Pirates to two runs on four hits with five strikeouts over five innings. He also bunted for a hit (advancing to third on two wild pitches) and tried to score from third on a fly ball. His awkward slide didn’t score but did aggravate his neck. He left with neck tightness after the fifth inning.

Embed from Getty Images

The Dodgers overcame a 2-1 deficit with three runs in the bottom of the third. Original starter Joe Musgrove was scratched from tonight’s game because of a finger injury. Young right hander Clay Holmes made the spot start for the Buccos and he was terrible. The Dodgers got to him for four earned runs on five hits across 2.1 innings.

Chris Taylor and Yasmani Grandal each had two hits and drove in three. Grandal’s RBI single in the bottom of the first put the Dodgers up by a run, but Starling Marte‘s two-run double in the third gave the Bucs a 2-1 lead. The lead didn’t last long. The Dodgers scored three in the bottom of the third to retake the lead. Grandal delivered again with a two-run double, and Taylor’s first single gave the Dodgers a 4-2 lead. The Dodgers added two more in the bottom of the fifth when Taylor’s stick drove in two more runs to put the Dodgers ahead 6-2.

Pirates  4 9 0

Dodgers 6 9 0

WP-Hill-2-3

LP-Holmes-0-1

SV-Jansen-23

HR-Polanco-12

Embed from Getty Images

There was some strange static between Daniel Hudson and the first base umpire Jeff Nelson in the top of the sixth. That led to Hudson being ejected from the game and the Dodgers a bit shocked. Reportedly they had some issue with his mound setup, but I have no idea why. I think his reaction is what got him tossed from the game. Hey lesson learned, don’t curse at the umpires. Moving along, after Gregory Polanco‘s two-run home run in the eighth inning, the Dodgers had to go to the big man Kenley Jansen for a five-out save. Kenley came through by pitching 1.2 scoreless innings to secure the win.

Hey hey what do you know? The Dodgers are now just a half game out of first place after the Cardinals beat the Dbacks tonight. The Giants lost too, so it was a pretty good night for us Dodger fans. The Dodgers get a day off on Thursday before heading down to Anaheim to open a series against the Angels over the weekend. Kenta Maeda will start the opener for the Dodgers on Friday night. It’s first place or bust folks!

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda's Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic Cheap MLB Tickets

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
Twitter

85 thoughts on “Dodgers Sweep Pirates on Independence Day

    1. I vote not the Dodgers. And I’m sticking pins in my dback doll too, you know, just in case Papa Legba and the spirits of Guinee are paying attention to the National League this year.

  1. I think it is hard to know which team will get Machado, unless you are familiar with every teams farm system or what the Orioles biggest need is.

    I assume the Phillies and the Braves have one of the stronger minor league systems, because they have been rebuilding.

    I haven’t kept up on the Cardinals at all, and I don’t know really if I should believe the Phillies and Braves will continue to play like they have, even though the Nationals are 7 or 8 games out.

    Because there is still a lot of season left.

    I definitely don’t think we will get Machado.

    I know we are hitting now to an extent, but two of the last three years, we were not hitting like we were, just before the trade deadline, after the trade deadline.

    And when both Cody and Corey went out on the DL last year, at almost the same time, we started slumping.

    If Turner gets healthy soon, I know we can count on Turner and Kemp to hit throughout the season, but most everyone else, I am not 100 percent convinced they will hit like they are now, even after they come back from the Allstar break.

    I do think we probably will get one or two arms for the bullpen, even if our GM said they are also looking at position players too.

    I don’t know how the Dbacks bullpen has been, but I do know if the Dbacks are trying to trade for Machado they won’t get Machado as easily is they got JD Martinez last year.

    Because the Orioles are much harder to deal with then the Tigers are, because the Orioles have a hard time trading their players, let alone trading Machado.

    It will be upsetting if the Dbacks do get Machado, because that will make two times, they got better deals then we did.

    And I am talking about mere performance out of their trade deadline players they went after.

    Because if the Dbacks never got JD Martinez I don’t know if they would have had the record they had, because Goldy was slumping toward the end of the season last year, because he hurt his elbow or arm.

    And JD Martinez’s production was off the charts last year.

    I know I don’t want the Dbacks to benefit again, and I was told last year, they really didn’t have enough quality players in their minor league system to get JD last year.

    1. You never know who GMs might value among A League prospects few have heard of. A superficial purview of prospects says Atlanta has much better talent to offer than Arizona, 6 rated higher in the Top 100, but that doesn’t mean they would use any of them for a rental. If they figure Machado puts them in the playoffs they might, but they also may be looking to ‘19 and beyond.

      You are right MJ, nobody knows what is being said behind closed doors. There are always surprises around July 31st.

  2. Well it was a fun game to watch yesterday. We had a great time and the fireworks were spectacular. No Dodger HR’s, but they actually played some small ball there. An oddity was that the couple sitting next to me, a guy and his girlfriend, she was the fan and he knew nothing about baseball! Kind of weird for someone in his mid 20’s not to know bupkis about the game. Anyway, I had to wait until I got home to figure out why Hudson got tossed. And even after I read about it I was somewhat confused. Show the ball to the base runner? I did not see him try and hide it ! But in the first base umps mind he was doing something wrong. Very strange ejection….and boy did he get hot when the ump tossed him. I thought he might have made an obscene gesture because he made a move like get back to where you are supposed to be so I can pitch. Overall it was a lot of fun except of course the traffic getting out of Dodger Stadium and all the fire works going on around LA. I read yesterday where in preliminary conversations the Dodgers did put Verdugo and May on the table in a possible Machado deal. Baltimore wants to do the deal sooner rather than later.

    1. Still no explanation that I’ve read. Testy umps. They often forget nobody gives a rats ass whether they are there or not.

      Verdugo and May might do it. Everyone knows he’s just a rental and they often don’t work out. He’s going to a major market next year. That isn’t Philadelphia , it isn’t Phoenix, nor is it Atlanta. Gotta be Gnu Yourk or Los Angeles …. right? Or not. I don’t know anything.

    2. I’m OK with trading Verdugo. I’m OK with getting Manny. But I’m not OK with trading Verdugo or anyone else of high value for a 3 month rental. Paying his salary for 4 months should be enough. Please let some other club shoot themselves in the foot.
      FAZ missed the boat last year with JD and Verlander. JD was cheap enough and Verlander was not a rental. (Besides, look who he brought with him…) But that is no reason to bet the farm this year.

  3. Our GM did say they are also looking for a position player too, not just pitching for the bullpen.

    But even if I believe what our GM said about a position player, I am kind of afraid of which position player, they would trade for.

    Because when they have traded for position players in the past, they not only didn’t perform, these traded players blocked out players already on the team, that could perform better.

    Like when they continually played Reddick over Puig and Toles.

    And last year, when they continually played Granderson over Either.

    It is hard to get excited with these big names, when we know this front office has never traded for a top player, at the top of their game.

    And when Friedman was with the Rays, he was almost always on the other side of these trade deadline trades, and that is where he found most of his success.

    Our GM also said, they wanted to get a player earlier too, to get more value of a rental, but that hasn’t been their MO in the past.

      1. I guess that is because Ethier had been out on the DL most of 2017, and almost all, of 2016.

        But when he was getting at bats, he was hitting unlike Granderson, who didn’t hit at all after two weeks, after joining this team.

        But he was still in line up, almost everyday, until the end of the regular season.

  4. Some people have commented that yesterday’s big trade was money related, rather than player talent. They should understand that what is being bartered is not money but just the right to spend that amount of money. Cincy did not give us money, just the right to spend that amount of money. That actually saves them money. Cui bono?

    1. It was for international pool money which allows the Dodgers to spend a little more on the international market, where so far FAZ has whiffed like Casey at the bat. Although the catcher they signed the other day is supposed to be the top rated foreign player. Floro will be on the major league roster, Neal who started the year with OKC and was traded to the Reds for Ariel Hernandez will be back at OKC. Floro was Dodger property last year. So gang roster moves coming up soon with Floro arriving and Buehler to be activated sometime next week.

  5. Machado makes the middle of the order pretty formidable that’s for sure. But it will take at least 3, maybe 4 prospects to land him. Verdugo would be the key and May right below that. Two more lower level players would probably get the job done. Maybe they could unload a couple of the unproductive Cuban’s they have signed the last couple of years. Ruiz is struggling now in the minors. Average down to .241. Gale hitting well over .300 at AAA. Maybe Barnes could use a little minor league time. DJ Peters hit # 17 last night.

    1. I was just thinking it is to bad that Ohtani got hurt, before we played the Angels this year.

      And I was thinking where has YF been lately, because he wanted Ohtani to be on this team like me.

      I hope he is just on vacation right now, and having a good time, because we haven’t heard from him, in quite a while.

  6. Longenhagen on the recent Dodgers trade:

    Question: Does the price for Floro, Neal, and bonus money seem steep to you? Marinan seems like he could be a guy.

    Eric A Longenhagen: Nah. I don’t dislike Marinan, but he’s maybe a #4/5 starter. That’s not steep when you’re adding pieces to contend for a ring

    Question: Why are the Dodgers trading for 40 relievers like Floro? Don’t they have better depth than that? Is this for the bonus pool, and if so, why?

    Eric A Longenhagen: I agree Floro doesn’t really move the needle but think ARI and LAD are going to be in a literal arms race the rest of the summer. Neither has great pitching depth (especially ARI) and both seem to be constantly dealing with injuries. They each need as many viable arms as possible.

    1. Also looks like Verdugo may have tweaked his approach:

      Alex Verdugo, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers (Profile)
      Level: Triple-A Age: 22 Org Rank: 2 FV: 50
      Line: 3-for-4, 2B, HR, BB

      Notes
      Verdugo may have made a subtle swing change as his lower half’s flexibility has improved. After looking at what his finish looked like when he homered on Tuesday juxtaposed against one from last year. It’s emblematic of the swings visible throughout the Dodgers system. You can see from the way Verdugo’s foot is bent in his older swing that he’s rotating hard, but the new, flexed front leg enables better balance and control of barrel depth via the lower half, as well as the hands. It’s a better, more athletic swing. Perhaps there’s suddenly more power here because of it.

      1. Reads interesting. Source? Would like to see video.

        I’ve seen a few. In a way he reminds me of Ethier. Calm, relaxed stance, controlled load, explosive, proper mechanics swing. He’s not as big as Ethier but the power will come. He’s no doubt being taught how to launch with a violent swing. In my view as long as he still hits line drives he will grow into more power. I think he’s ready for ML pitching now but I don’t bring him up. No room. And that’s a good thing.

        We are still mostly winning. We lay an egg now and then but things are happening. We’re 6-4 and had a great June. It’s fun when things are going our way…… right?

        Oh, interesting read on the arms race. I buy it. Arizona is in it to win it. They will try something.

        1. Badger

          I totally agree with you about the line drive approach.

          In fact I was one that said Joc should stay with the new approach, and the HRs would come.

          I hope this doesn’t mess with Verdugo’s swing, because really, 7 HRs are not a lot of HRs, at almost the half way point, but better for Verdugo then last year.

          He is a very good contract hitter, so I think as he fills out, those line drives will become HRs at times too.

          Toles hit 5 HRs in one month in the majors.

          I think these guys are going to feed off each other the rest of the season, and they will both get better from that.

          That is if the manager stops giving so many days off to a player when they are hot.

          Toles was on that streak and after four games the manager gave him a day off, and he didn’t play the next day because of a rain out.

          He did come back and hit in the very next game, and the game after that, but then his manager gave him another day off.

          Of course I believe the Dbacks are trying to make that deal, why would’t they, they got a very good return from JD Martinez last year, and they didn’t pay a lot for JD if the articles I read, were correct.

          My only thought is, do they have enough good prospects that the Orioles want.

          And in the past, the Orioles have held on to their players tight.

          I read at Dodger com, that we didn’t have a lot of top prospects, to make a trade.

          I don’t know about that myself, but I was a little surprised to read that.

          What I read at Dodger Com, is the Dodgers don’t have enough good prospects to trade with, as speculated.

          1. As requested Badger.

            Verdugo:
            twitter (DOT) com/longenhagen/status/1014688396856291328

            The trend in Dodgers’ hitters:
            twitter (DOT) com/longenhagen/status/1007357105299324928

        2. As requested Badger.

          Verdugo:
          twitter (DOT) com/longenhagen/status/1014688396856291328

          The trend in Dodgers’ hitters:
          twitter (DOT) com/longenhagen/status/1007357105299324928

          1. No link Bluto.

            The Dodgers have some terrific talent in the minors. If it’s about the most Major League ready prospects it looks like there are a few teams who could do it if they want. Not sure Arizona is in there but we are. He is a rental……. would you give Verdugo, May and Ruiz? Verdugo and Ruiz are #27 an #44 on MLB.com Top 100. May not on that list. I think it might be too much unless we have a pretty good idea if he wants to stay. Maybe a three way with somebody but who you sending out? If we add another infielder one of those here has to go. Who?

            Machado is Kawhi Leonard. Do we really need him? I say yes, but we need pitching too.

    2. Bluto,

      Floro’s numbers do not look bad this year. His W-L and ERA are decent, in fact better than most of our relievers. I have an open mind towards seeing what he does and Roberts says he can go multiple innings if needed! We need a good long man.

  7. Verdugo, Ruiz, May, and Kawhi Leonard. I will write them all down and let’s see if any of them amount to a pool of spit. Probably not but we think maybe we could trade them for players that the Dodger Management would never trade for but we choose to think that it might be a possibility. Gimme a break. I think Verdugo is a bust. If he wasn’t we would see him. Muncy came out of nowhere but Verdugo flounders around in the minors and does nothing. Oh yeah, wait till September. BS, we need help now. Remember Kemp needs rest almost daily so let Verdugo strut his stuff. We talk about stuff that will never happen. Bluto talks about Floro, Neal, bonus money and Marinan. WHO? Give me a break.

    1. I am not sure anyone here believes they’ll do it pack. I’m just saying we could be in on the bidding if we wanted to be. We don’t need him as much as, say, the dbacks do. They love sticking it back in our face. They had opportunity last year and came up short.

    2. Flounders???? Come on Pack, the guy is raking and the reason he is not here is two fold. No need at this point and no room. He is a lefty hitting outfielder but that’s the only position he plays. Everyone else except Kemp Joc and Puig play multiple positions. OI love your passion my friend, but your analysis and reasoning are way the hell off base. I understand your sarcasm about Kemp needing rest, but he has played a lot so far. So what if he is lifted for defensive reasons late in a game…if the game is out of hand, who cares? Unreasonable to think you know more about Matt Kemp’s physical and mental state than the manager.

    1. Figures. To pitch for Mississippi State? Risky move.

      How many other first round picks are walking away from life changing money?

      1. Do not know, but it happens sometimes…maybe he feels a education is more important in the long run.

        1. Do you believe that is what he thinks?

          I think you don’t go to Mississippi State for an education, you go to Vanderbilt for that. I believe he’s gonna pitch maybe 2 years there and hope to make another couple million by doing so. If he can move up to upper mid round he can nearly double the $2.2mm. Who knows what slot money will be in 2020. Risky, but it might work out. Just don’t let State overwork you kid.

          1. I agree. The risk does not support the ~possible gain. It may be such a dumb move that the scouting department shouldn’t be blamed for selecting him, who could anticipate that. I’d still like to have Logan White back in charge here…

          2. I just read that he was not happy with the amount of money he was slotted for, so you hit the nail on the head..long green beats out education

    2. D-Backs pick at 25 not signing either.

      Coincidence or NL West collusion? That was a joke.

      This happened before with Funkhouser. I still wish the Dodgers had a player named Funkhouser.

      Oh. Max Muncy has a higher fWAR than JD Martinez

      1. It’s end of year numbers that matter.

        It’s my opinion that, hitting being near equal, anyone who plays defense has more value to a team than a player that doesn’t. I don’t trust dWAR numbers do the fact Muncy has a negative dWAR means little to me. I know it means something to sabrmetricians, so there’s that. It’s also my opinion JD Martinez is a better hitter than Max Muncy.

  8. I am glad I don’t have to make that decision because it would be hard for me to turn down 2 million plus dollars only because of the risk of injury.

    If knew I would stay healthy, of course I would go to college, and get the bigger money later.

    1. I thought about this when we drafted Zach Lee. It was different then for a couple of reasons – much bigger bonus being the main reason – but Lee had opportunity to play QB at a leading football university, LSU. Being an old high school quarterback from Southern California that would be like turning down a scholarship to play QB at USC. That said, $2.25 million in Mississippi is a lot of freakin money. Properly invested it could be worth a lot more in two years than you might end up getting later. I’m sure he had a team of adult advisors helping him with this. He also may want to sign with a team not from California. He is after all a kid from Mississippi.

    2. That is not guaranteed, MJ, his ‘talent” could degenerate without an injury. Plus I assume the criteria for judgement is higher for college players than for high schoolers, he could well be drafted lower or not at all even. Plus, he could always go to college later after making millions of dollars. He just got bad advice. Of course he can always change his mind until 5 PM Eastern time….

      1. Jonah

        Those are some more good points, that I didn’t think of at the time, I wrote that.

        You are so right, more would be expected from him after college, and that is the same reason Verdugo is more valuable then Toles, because of their age difference.

        And you are right, he can always go to college later, and really most people are better students, when they get older, because they not only apply themselves better, they have a better view of the world, after having to work for a living.

        And after all of those good points your right, I probably would have took the sure money.

        Because if he is that good, why worry about a bonus that is a few more million dollars, with the money major leaguers make, these days.

  9. I love Muncy but if he played left field or rightfield like JD Martinez has, his defensive numbers probably wouldn’t be quite as good.

    Although even with the A’s when he played second, his defensive numbers were not bad at all.

    But it is a lot easier to play first base, then play in the outfield, but from what I hear, playing left at Fenway is pretty easy, after you get use to how the ball comes back off the wall.

    But JD Martinez has been hitting 300 all year, and that is the thing that is hard to do.

    I wish we had Mookie Betts in our outfield, because he is one of the best all around players in all of baseball.

  10. Mookie Betts, 21 doubles and 21 HRs, and 40 walks and only 35 strike outs, and he has been hitting 300 plus all season long, those are good numbers.

    And his defense metrics are just as impressive, and he also can be a terror on the bases too.

      1. Bluto

        First you picked a player that doesn’t hit with any power, to make your point, and I was talking about two players that have hit 20 plus HRs.

        And believe me, if a team had a choice of two players, with much the same numbers, and one player was hitting 300 and the other player was hitting 245, they would take the 300 hitter.

        Because these low a average hitters, can easily stopped, with good pitching.

        And I don’t equate walks the same as a hit either, because walks don’t hit in any runs, unless the bases are loaded, yet some equate walks to hits too.

        And it is obvious the Cubs still value that player, because he is in the line up almost everyday.

        1. Bluto,

          Almora is OPSing in the 800s, so he is an above average hitter, and from what I hear, he is also an excellent centerfielder.

          If you asked Trout and Mookie, they would tell you they value hitting 300.

          Why settle for less?

          1. Not my point at all, MJ.

            My point was the article pointed that batting average is not maintaining value as a diagnostic. Not whether Mike Trout cares about his BA, nor was it if Almora is a good fielder.

            The closest you come to addressing the article is your hypothetical about a question if a team would value a .300 or .245 hitter, the article posits that there are many, many stats that would be valued before BA for most teams,

  11. AC is most critical of another FAZ blunder in losing the #1 draft pick, Ginn. I wish he would post here. Some of you who post there should ask him. Heck, he could even “copy and paste” everything like Mr. Data does….

    1. There are a few guys from over there I would like to see here.

      I think I’d take the money. School is cool, and obviously State has a great baseball program. But the coaching and prep you get in the pros is literally leagues better. No doubt more fun on campus than on a bus from Crawdad Junction to Beavercrotch, but $2.2 million is a lot of salad. I checked at Realtor.com what you could buy for less than a million in his home town and it’s basically anything you want. 5,000 square ft southern charmer on 20 acres by a lake for $850k. Most people work their entire lives and don’t get anywhere near that. Enjoy State kid.

        1. Your obsession is showing again pack. Maybe you should check in with your therapist regarding this. Or better yet, double your CBD intake.

          1. You got to respect a man who picks up his shovel and goes to his life’s work day after day. Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night… you know what I mean…

          2. Badger,
            I think I’ll stay away from the dope. My therapist doesn’t think Dummy is very smart either. I got it Badger, maybe we need to sit Dummy some games or pull him out of end game situations? Yeah, that just might work?

          3. CBD ain’t dope pack.

            Look at the bright side. We lost our best player for the year, 4/5 of our starting rotation has been on the DL for a good part of the season, Forsythe ……. and WE’RE IN FIRST PLACE!! How can you not be happy about that? You don’t like the manager? Ignore him! Your team is in first place man!!

      1. Replies to threads are usually offset to the right of the thread it is attached to… After Badger referred to your remark about Dummy, I remarked that it had become your life’s work and we should respect your diligence…

          1. I don’t think it has a title. (Note to blog owners: Perhaps sequentially numbering the responses on your blog would enhance understanding and reduce confusion.)
            Go to Timmons’ Ladodgertalk.com/Maybe This Team is Built for the Playoffs and World Series
            Go to last comment and scroll up, looking for posts from AC. This would be his second from the bottom. It is time stamped at 12:25 PM.

  12. I’ve decided I want an Isaac Bonga jersey.

    One of you can send it to me for the Arzawa Hittite interregnum holiday of Mye Bongon Fire, celebrated the first Thursday thru Sunday of every week.

  13. Odd. The Atlanta Braves Number One pick also did not sign and also is going to Mississippi State. The girls there must be out of this world or maybe the grass is real “grass'”…

    1. No explaining Mississippi. Elvis, Walter Payton and root beer. That’s about it. If it weren’t for Louisiana, Mississippi would be dead last in everything.

    2. I don’t believe this! Now the Pirates #36 draft is going to Mississippi! What is going on there that we’re missing?

  14. From DodgerThoughts:

    Here’s what’s extraordinary. On your average night, Muncy, Taylor and Turner comprise three-fourths of the Dodger starting infield. The total cost for originally acquiring all three players: Zach Lee.

    1. Interesting way to look at it.

      Every chance you get to plug FAZ, hey Bluto?

      I’ll counter that with:

      What was the original (and ongoing) cost of Olivera, McCarthy, Anderson and Kazmir?

        1. This is a better test – doing it in the year they reduce payroll. I’ll be impressed if they pull it off

          1. Poorly worded. I hope for the Championship but it’s an admitted long shot.

            I’m just planning to enjoy the season.

          2. Good plan.

            I’m in the same boat. At the moment there are a few teams I believe would beat us in a 7 game series. 3 of them are in the AL. All that could change.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Optionally add an image (JPEG only)