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The game started out innocently and joyfully enough. Kenta Maeda was grooving and the Dodgers were able to score four runs (three off of Aaron Nola). Scoring three runs off Nola is hard enough so when you have a three-run lead against him you best hold onto it. The Dodgers got two solo home runs from Yasmani Grandal (from both sides of the plate) an RBI double from Joc Pederson in the fifth and another run scored in the first inning on a dropped pop fly and a wild pitch. Joc had 4 hits and Grandal had three as both men accounted for 7 of the Dodgers 11 hits.
Grandal needs 6 more HRs to tie Johnny Roseboro for the LA #Dodgers record for most HRs by a catcher
1. Mike Piazza 176
2. Steve Yeager 98
3. John Roseboro 87
4. Yasmani Grandal 81
5. Mike Scioscia 68#oneskill
— Stacie Wheeler (@StacieMWheeler) July 25, 2018
Dodgers 4 11 0
Phillies 7 11 0
The Dodgers up 4-1 entering the bottom of the seventh looked to be firmly in control of the game. Unfortunately just like Monday evening the Phillies would mount a late rally scoring three runs to tie the game at 4-4. Jorge Alfaro’s three-run home run was the dagger in Maeda’s chest. Up until that point he was on point. The Phillies had just one base runner through the first four innings until Nick Williams’ solo home run in the bottom of the fifth. Maeda was pitching so well too. His Slider was biting, he was painting both sides of the plate and his changeup was full of movement. It’s a damn shame I tell you.
Before you start piling on poor Dave Roberts for leaving him in too long, remember this; the Dodgers middle relief corp consists of a bunch of guys. Unless you would rather have Zac Rosscup or Erik Goeddel pitching with runners in scoring position then a tired Maeda is probably the better choice there. The irony of it all is that the Dodger bullpen pitched their hearts out providing the club with fifteen scoreless frames from the seventh through the fifteenth innings. The Dodgers used every reliever except for Caleb Ferguson and I still don’t know why he wasn’t used. He pitched on Sunday sure, but surely he could have tossed an inning.
The Dodgers had plenty of chances to win it but in grand 2018 Dodgers style stranded a small army of base runners. Once again the situational hitting escaped them as they were unable to cash in on opportunities. Chris Taylor doubled in the eleventh inning (the stupid ball girl touched the ball otherwise Taylor may have gone to third) but they couldn’t score him.
Chase Utley singled in the top of the twelfth to the delight of the home crowd, but he was left stranded as well. Joc Pederson doubled and Manny Machado was intentionally walked in the top of the fifteenth, but Yasmani Grandal struck out leaving both runners on base. The Dodgers had two runners on second and third in the sixteenth as well when Cody Bellinger singled, Barnes walked and both men advanced on a wild pitch. Of course Logan Forsythe whiffed when it mattered most and the Dodgers got nothing.
Getting closer … https://t.co/uTqbQtA15s
— Jon Weisman (@jonweisman) July 25, 2018
During Forsythe’s at-bat the Dodgers had Rich Hill trot out to the bullpen to warm up and I have no clue why they didn’t bring him in. Enrique Hernandez ended up pitching and giving up the walk-off three-run home run to Plouffe to end the game. I guess the Dodgers thought it would be cute to use Hernandez as pitcher, but I didn’t. I actually feel bad for Enrique. He pitched his heart out but got pegged with the loss. The Dodgers better cap those innings if they want him to pitch tomorrow. Noteworthy was Hernandez’s spectacular play in the fifth inning before he took the mound. See above.
The Dodger’s lead in the National League west is now down to just a half game as we angrily head to bed. Not sure the Dodgers can or will sleep but they won’t get much as the rubber game is scheduled for 12:35 PM EST/9:35 AM PST early Wednesday afternoon/morning. Walker Buehler is slated to counter Jake Arrieta. If the Dodgers have any hopes of winning he better pitch a complete game shutout.