Good News: Dodgers Score 5, Bad News: Cubs Score Many, Many More

On a sun-drenched afternoon in Los Angeles, the Dodgers took the field with several things to prove, both to the Chicago Cubs and themselves.
Clayton Kershaw took the mound in his second start since coming off the disabled list. Could he prevail under the sun and defeat the Cubs?
Logan Forsythe and his past 0 for last 15 at bats trotted out to second base. Would he finally break his ugly slump?
Walker Buehler was called off a rehab start in AAA and would piggyback Kershaw. How would he pitch after nearly a month?

The Dodgers bullpen sat and waited to be called upon. Could they pulled off the Cubs if Kershaw had to make an early exit, or hold a slim lead and get the Dodgers to Kenley Jansen?

Finally, would the big bat Dodgers continue their homer-filled June, and perhaps more importantly, could they make clutch base hits to drive in baserunners?

That question was partly answered quickly when the Dodgers failed to score despite loading the bases in the bottom of the first inning. In the meantime, Kershaw was looking pretty good early on. His fastball had good snap and the curve ball was dropping in nicely.

Enrique Hernandez finally broke the Dodgers’ drought of not bringing in RISP with a two out RBI single in the bottom of the second. Nevertheless, it was a drop in the bucket, as the Dodgers stranded five men over the first two innings.

Max Muncy crushed a solo home run in the bottom of the third to put the Dodgers up two to zero. Kershaw gave up a double to start off the fourth, and he was driven in on a two out base hit to get the Cubs within one run. The Dodgers roared right back in their half of the fourth Austin Barnes led off with a base hit, and Kiké drove him home with a two out gapper to right CF

The Dodgers went up 3-1.

Clayton Kershaw finished Tuesday at just over 60 pitches and five complete innings, 4 hits, 6 Ks. He looked very good over the afternoon, despite an extended run of early baserunners. His curveball looked the best I’ve seen all season.

Walker Buehler took over in the sixth, and immediately gave up a solo home run to Almora. The Cubs were knocking Buehler’s pitches all around the park. Despite that, the Dodgers sent him out for the seventh inning. Buehler gave up a massive lead off double, which was cashed in by another double. He didn’t get a single out and was pulled with men on second and third, with the Cubs holding their first lead of the day, 4-3.

I can see allowing a crafty, grizzled veteran like Kershaw a rehab start at his home stadium. Doing it with young, inexperienced pitchers simply played out as a mess. Buehler hadn’t pitched since June 8th. Was sending him out in a close game against a big club like the Cubs really a smart move?

Erik Goeddel took over on the mound and the Cubs broke the game wide open with a bases clearing double by Anthony Rizzo. Chicago went up 8-3, but that didn’t last very long, as Goeddel quickly gave up a two run home run. Cubs up 10-3.

The Cubs added another run in the eighth, and Justin Turner had a two run blast in the ninth, but the game had already been over for a while. The Cubs won decisively and the Dodgers were left with too many wrong answers to their questions.

Oscar Martinez

Oscar Martinez

I was born in the shadow of Dodger Stadium and immediately drenched in Dodger Blue. Chavez Ravine is my baseball cathedral, Vin Scully was the golden voice of summer all my life, and Tommy Lasorda remains the greatest Dodgers manager ever. My favorite things are coffee, beer, and the Dodgers beating the Giants. I also blog about my baseball card hobby at All Trade Bait, All the Time.

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40 thoughts on “Good News: Dodgers Score 5, Bad News: Cubs Score Many, Many More

  1. Dodger management team outsmarting themselves again.

    File this one away in case last few days of season are close for
    playoff spot….

    Buehler in seventh was compounded foolishness.

      1. I think what he means is, it’s not smart to purposefully try and script a baseball game and it’s not smart to continuously use the bullpen (6-7 relievers) for five plus innings every night. The Dodgers need length from their starters. They need innings or the bullpen will continue to blow out their arms and blow leads. There are now three middle relievers on the disabled list with arm and shoulder issues (Cingrani, Baez, Fields). How many more are going to drop? My guess is Goeddel is next. Better idea would have been to let Kershaw pitch seven innings to give the bullpen a break. Buehler could have made his rehab start in OKC where if he gives up several runs due to being rusty, it won’t matter. They need to change their theories on baseball or more pitchers will continue to get hurt because of their improper usage.

        1. The miscalculation of using Buehler as a backup arm to Kershaw when both pitchers are freshly off the DL is just plain dumb. Roberts is one of the worst in-game managers I’ve come across in a long time. His decisions are not the work of someone who has common sense and who understands how to use his pitching army. We have pitchers galore, at least let’s use a perfectly healthy and tested one to back up Kershaw and give him the confidence he needs at this point in his comeback! Shit for brains, imo.

          MM rolling along. Kemp rolling downhill.
          MLB continues to talk about Machado and the Dodgers.

        2. Oh no.

          Is Scott back on the “workhorse” front?

          Kershaw’s limit was 5IP. That was well-known before the game started. Which begs the question, if you are trying to get Kershaw’s stamina back, how do you propose?

        3. Scott

          You know that is one thing I agree with you, about!

          It will always come back to haute you down the line, and especially in the post season.

          There has to be balance between the starters and the bullpen, to make it through a season, and beyond.

          Even if this is an old concept in baseball, it doesn’t make it wrong.

  2. Headline at MLB: “Dominant Kershaw: ‘I’ve proven that I’m healthy.’”

    No, you haven’t. 5 innings, 68 pitches? A healthy Kershaw goes 7 and can throw 105 pitches.

    I don’t know why Buehler today. Maybe because as Scott mentioned the arms are dead or dying. Buehler hit 98 today. Put a bit a spin on that, bring it to 95 and nobody could hit it. 98 straight as a string will get turned around. Hopefully he learns from this. We are going to need him. We are going to need him and a lot more. Cubs scored 25 the last three games.

    1. No evidence that arms are dead or dying. Cingrani has had problems all season, not because he has pitched too much. Baez belongs in the minors so no issue here. Fields is a questionable reliever in my estimation. I can’t figure him out at all.

      This idea of arms worn out at this stage is ludicrous. Some pitchers are not meant for heavy lifting no matter what. Others are iron men. The need to sort through the army should be made throughout the season to prepare for the next. They have ample arms in reserve especially if the starters can give us 4 solid innings. Too much to hope for? I don’t think so. I have no problem with Kershaw going only 5 innings as long as the backup plan is sound. Chicago is a damned good hitting team. Much better than we are. We were lucky to escape with an even series, but our relievers helped achieve that and all the other series we’ve won in the last month or so.

  3. To tell you the truth, when I saw Buehler come in this game, I was not to worried, so I can’t blame Roberts there.

    But I thought I read that Buehler would be making a rehab start in AAA, so I was surprised to see him today.

    I didn’t even realize it had been a month for Buehler, until I read it today from Oscar’s review, of this game.

    Of course after the fact, I thought maybe Ferguson would be a better choice.

    I think it really stings today, only because it was the Cubs.

    Some good did come out of this game, because Kershaw did look pretty good, today.

    It was also good to see both Kike and Muncy, continue to hit, and see Barnes gets some hits too.

    And of course, it was nice to see Muncy hit another HR.

    Muncy just gives this team a good at bat everyday, and by saying that, I feel like I am not giving Muncy his real do.

    But I am really impressed when he is up to bat, because he never gets cheated, and I really mean that.

    He not only leads this team with OPS now, he is hitting right under Kemp in average, now too.

    How can anyone not root for a player like Muncy, who played his way on this team.

    I did have reservations about Muncy when he first came up, but he changed my mind.

    And I always have a lot of respect for a player that has worked hard in the off season, to improve their game.

    And Muncy has done much more then that now.

    And that is why I gave him credit in the earlier article today, because it hasn’t only been Cody, that has hit throughout June, so has Muncy.

  4. Lots of theory’s, but that’s all. Buehler was said to be healthy and ready to pitch. He did a simulated game and was declared fit. Same with Kershaw. Why are any of you surprised at all by the outcome? This is the way FAZ and DR operate. It is no mystery what so ever. Goeddel has been rocked his last 3 outings after looking unhittable for a month. Paredes had not given up a thing until Tuesday night. It is baseball, it happens. Bad day at the office. Sitting here staring at your computer trying to analyze it is not changing a thing. This is the FAZ and Roberts and Guggenheim version of championship baseball. Stay close, stay competitive and make tons of money at the gate. It is working for them. I for one am no longer trying to get into their heads and get some idea of what they are trying to prove. All I know is they lost a game they could have won. They had the lead in the other loss too and the bullpen imploded both times. And I agree with the idea they are working these guys too much. That is precisely the reason the OKC shuttle has been working overtime. But fixing it? I am not sure they even know how. Their philosophy is still pick up another teams cast off and hope for the best. Trading for a solid bullpen arm? Pipe dream. You guys want Britton? He has not been proven to be healthy, so yeah, that fits the FAZ profile. Trade for another over priced sore armed pitcher. They have done it so many times already. As for Kersh, they should have at least let him sail one more inning. The two games they had to pitch the bullpen 4 innings they lost. They have some fresher arms in AAA. And a couple of former MLB pitchers who could probably give them some innings. But they keep calling up the same guys. How many of you have seen enough of Stewart to last you? I am not all that worried about the offense. It has picked itself up a lot. They could still use someone to replace the lost soul that is Logan Forsythe who is totally overmatched as a hitter. The deadline is just a little over a month away. What they do then will tell us a lot about how committed they are to winning this division, because the way I see it, that is the only way they will get into the playoffs. I am heading out to Cali on Saturday and will be there a month. My sister went and got tickets for the 4th, behind home plate on the reserved level.

  5. There is a lot of chatter on MLB.com about the Dodgers now being considered the top contender to land Machado. Orioles are scouting the Dodgers farm system extensively. O’s might be interested in an outfielder since Jones is a free agent and most likely will leave. So since the Dodgers are loaded in the minors at that position, one of their top outfield prospects would most likely be in the mix. But we shall see. Britton has been terrible his last few outings. Degrom and Syndergaard both might be available according to the Mets temporary GM. Alderson is on leave battling cancer.

    1. Sandy Alderson is said to be the one who brought statistical analysis to the A’s, but Billy Beane is usually credited with that.

      I had the distinction of having my 1981 Datsun 280ZX’s hood crushed by Alderson’s wife one fine S.F. morning in the early 90’s while my car was parked on the street that I lived on. She backed into it with an SUV. She was kind and honest enough to leave a note telling me how to get in touch with her and she would take care of the repairs. I had completely forgotten this until you mentioned Alderson’s name, Michael!

      1. Jeff

        I bet you loved your z!

        I had a 1991 240, and I loved that car.

        If they started to make those again, I would definitely want one again.

  6. I said early and often the bats would be ok but the pitching worried me. I’m saying the same thing this morning.

    Jeff, I agree in principle that tired arms this early in the season is ludicrous, but I think we may be witnessing it. I don’t know why these bigger, stronger, higher paid high tech athletes break easier than the smaller less athletic players of yesteryear but the fact is – they do. We’ve been musical chairing the DL for a few years now. And that dance includes our All World usta win Cy Young’s pitcher Clayton Kershaw. Every pitcher on this team, and that number may reach 30, will have been on the DL or given time off for one reason or another by seasons end. I don’t know why but I suspect FAZ’s penchant for signing the infirmed on the cheap has something to do with it. As for the Guggenheim making money with this team – who hasn’t? Even the miscreant cockroach Frankie No Nickels McImpecunious made bank owning this club. And he used the Trump model to do so – borrow money, declare bankruptcy, don’t pay your bills, re-organize with OPM and move on down the gold plated highway. Guggenheim will sell and make a profit on this club. And they won’t need to win a championship to do it.

    This MLB paradigm is weirding me out. I’m doing my best to wrap my head around it but I’m having difficulty with it. And, I look around this world and I see what looks like bat shit crazy everywhere. I don’t know how things fit anymore.

    So, Dodgers, find another Morrow off the scrap heap and hope Muncy bails you out offensively while the Yankees do what the Yankees do and the Astros win another Championship.

    Oh, and congratulations Beavers. Also, I hope that Arkansas second baseman can learn to live with that one. Poor kid will be talked about for generations down there.

    1. Maybe it is just that pitching is terrible on everyone’s body in general, and because relievers go all out in the few innings, or inning they come into a game, injuries hit them sooner, and the fact they come into so many games in a season, as compared to starters, could be another reason.

      Also relievers can get up and sit down a lot during games, before they come into games.

      I was thinking about another positive in this last series against the Cubs.

      They did hit our bullpen hard, but Buehler was not an example of a pitcher in our bullpen, because this was more a short rehab game for him, and he was out on the DL even longer then I thought.

      And remember how many games it took Maeda to start pitching well, after he came back from the DL, and he wasn’t out as long as Buehler was.

      Also, the Cubs didn’t really hit our starters that much in this series, so if we can get an arm for the pen, and get this bullpen straighten up, we will be in good shape.

      Badger I know what you mean about things being so off right now in general!

      Michael I hope you are treating your sister to as many Dodgers dogs that she wants, and something to drink, for those tickets.

      1. In case anyone is interested, a well made movie to see is about the life of Mo Berg, Red Sox catcher in the late 30’s, called ‘The Cather Is A Spy’. This is a great and true story about Berg doubling as a spy and charged to kill the nuclear scientist Heisenberg who was working on the A-bomb for the nazis. Excellent cast, fascinating story. I had never heard this one before.

      2. Maybe it’s pitchers throwing instead of pitching. Straight 98 is not necessarily better than bent 88. Pitch to weak contact appears to be yet another thing of the past.

        1. Bravo there Badger. Koufax was great because he threw the best curveball in the majors at that time, but he could crank up the volume with his heater when needed. Kershaw has never thrown in the high 90’s when he was winning Cy Youngs. It was 92-95 with location. Maddux never broke any windows with his fastball either. I could name a lot of guys who were very successful without a blazing fastball. Spahn, Haddix, Shantz, Burdette, and Elroy Face. And a former Dodger who pitched 20 years in the majors. Charlie Hough.

      3. I actually do not eat hot dogs anymore. But she will no doubt want some of the garlic fries they sell there. The Angels are as snake bit as the Dodgers with injuries. They lost a reliever yesterday who tripped and broke his leg making a play, and Cozart is going to have surgery on his shoulder. And Badger is certainly right about these highly tuned athletes breaking down more than the old timers did. Of course the remedies back in those days were a lot more crude than they are today. Gehrig played all those games and did so with sprains, broken fingers, and all sorts of maladies. But it took a fatal disease to stop his streak. I think in a lot of ways some of these players are too much into the workouts. They are gym rats. You never saw these kinds of injury’s as prevalent in the 50’s and 60’s. They of course did not have specialized medicine back then either. And there were some things that just cropped up unexpectedly. One familiar case was Karl Spooner of the Dodgers. He flamed out very fast. Had he been around now, they would have been able to repair his shoulder. The beat goes on. The woeful Rockies come in today. Teams like this, the Dodgers need to dominate.

        1. Michael

          I do think your right, some of these baseball players do over work, in the gym.

          We never heard of these oblique injuries, in the past.

          But it is about a happy medium, or moderation, that is probably best, when we are talking about, most anything.

          But I do enjoy working out myself, so I understand the concept, and the need.

  7. Rich Hill, last 7 outings, going back to April 7 – 29.2 innings, 21 earned runs. Bluto loves to watch this guy pitch. I cringe when I see his name in the lineup. So… does he go 5? Does he give up 3 or fewer earned runs? Rockies in a slump. So what? The Cubs were in a slump too and they came out of it big time against Dodger pitching. We’re favored, 7 1/2 runs. I’ll take us to win, the over on 7.5 and Hill will complete 5, but will also give up at least 3. I’m the only one who ever does this here so I’m betting against myself, guaranteeing I will win even when I lose.

      1. He is. There’s a short video of it online. He looks good. He should be available by the trade deadline, possibly before.

  8. It looks like Toles may be heating up,

    He was 3 for 6 last night with a double and he hit in, two, two out, RBIs, last night.

    He is now 7 for his last, 14 at bats, in his last three games.

    1. Again the question arises……………….where are you going to play him? There is not a spot for him on this team at this time. All of the outfielders are producing, yes even Joc. Verdugo made the all star team down there and is hitting close to .330. But there is not a spot on the team for either of them. If Toles were a 2nd baseman he would be up here already.

      1. Can he pitch?

        No?

        We don’t need him. Trade him and the other slugging AAA outfielder, Verdugo, for Machado.

          1. Which is EXACTLY why you are not a GM. Are you serious??? Please…Forsythe is about as valuable as a bad case of hemorrhoids. And they have not been paying Crawford for a while….

      2. Michael

        You just posted some stuff from the AAA team.

        And you have been following baseball long enough to know, that you never know what is going to happen, during a long baseball season.

        It is always good to have players that are producing well in AAA, especially a player like Toles, that has produced at the major league level.

        Players get hurt, and some players producing now, may not be producing in the future, that is baseball.

        And any team would be stupid not to have players ready to fill in, or take a position, if a player goes down.

        1. Granted, but the fact still remains that unless something drastic happens there is no spot for him or Verdugo on this team. There are a couple of other guys besides those two who have MLB experience. And Toles has a very small resume. He has only had 201 MLB at bats. Not his fault to be sure, but just because he has had moderate success up here does not mean he can continue what he is doing down there. Don’t get me wrong, I like the guy but he is part of FAZ’s so called depth. Verdugo has only 57 at bats as a Dodger. Too small a sample to know what he can do. They both are solid players down there. And right now, the Dodger system is loaded with outfield prospects.

          1. Michael

            Toles has a resume that showed he has always produced when he played was given a chance.

            And he has proved he can hit consistently, and if you were so sure, you wouldn’t be down playing the guy.

  9. Drury recalled by the Yankees. Lots of players being made available by their teams. Beltre wants to stay with the Rangers.

  10. It’s only a matter of time that teams come calling with some deal that includes prospects like Toles, Verdugo, etc. Not only can we not hold on to these guys forever, the players themselves will eventually not tolerate it.

    FAZ is a slow moving machine. I don’t mind the snail’s pace to fix some areas of the team and audition the prospects to see what we’ve got, but it does take two teams to make any deal. Since necessity is the mother of invention, the only necessity we have to deal with sooner rather than later is 2B. It is a hole with Forsythe standing in. Engaging in a trade scenario about Machado will probably not include Forsythe. Unless 2B is done and dusted, trading for Machado will open new questions for the team such as where do you play Seager? And, is Seager that much below Machado to give up any positional players that are incumbent or mixed with top prospects? No one has given their thoughts to this and I have asked this question 3x already. What happens to Seager?

    The MLB article on a possible Machado trade mentions that Cleveland would be interested in him at 3B. Could he play 2B? I don’t know. All I know is I thought SS and 3B are nailed down by Turner and Seager. Then why all this talk about Machado? Doesn’t make sense to me except he’s a very good player. But, I do think that any trades are going to involve top prospects if we want anything of perceived value coming back to us. FAZ are not known for the free spending especially after the Kazimir, Anderson, etc., fiasco of the last few years and the poor production of Rich Hill who was handed a golden parachute for nothing but blisters.

    1. “What happens to Seager?”

      You didn’t like my idea?

      I think Bellinger, probably the fastest guy on the team, would be an outstanding centerfielder. I don’t know how good a shortstop Machado is but him, Taylor and Bellinger up the middle, with Turner and Seager at corner infield positions sounds damn solid to me. Do that for two years and see how it works. Maybe Seager goes to third after Turner is gone, maybe Machado does, whatever.

      1. Badger, sorry but I didn’t see your post detailing this.

        Seager does have the size similar to Bellinger for playing 1B. I’m not saying that this wouldn’t work, but he has no experience playing 1B, or does he? If he doesn’t, does this mean that all positions are interchangeable? Can a player learn on the job to play another position? We already have a great 1B in Cody, a great 3B in Turner, many feel that Seager is great at SS, and Taylor is more effective in CF. Why work to change this when all we need is another 2B? If Machado can play 2B, I’m in, but we are going to have to give up someone(s) important to get him and then we will have a hole somewhere else to fill. For me, the simplest solution and less costly one is to get a quality 2B and forget about everything else except pitching.

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