I don’t know what’s going on in the National League West, but it’s strange. With the Dodger’s 3-0 victory over the Rockies in Wednesday night’s series finale at Dodger Stadium means that the Dodgers are only 3.5 games back of first place. It might be a little too early to call the Dodgers contenders. After all they’re still 5 games under .500, and only 10-14 at Chavez Ravine. However with the Dbacks circling the toilet bowl and the Rockies looking beatable the Dodgers just might have a real chance to turn their season around, as they take advantage of a weaker division this year. The boys in blue have now won six of their last seven games.
Marvelous Kenta Maeda twirled another masterpiece. Coming off his eight inning gem against the Marlins, he turned in another outstanding performance. The Japanese right hander tossed 6.2 shutout frames allowing just two hits and striking out 12. Maeda walked four and made 111 pitches. The Rockies were held to just three singles and four walks. Maeda picked up his fourth win of the season.
Rockies 0 4 0
Dodgers 3 6 0
The Dodger bats did their work against opposing left hander Kyle Freeland in the middle innings. They scored two runs in the fourth and another in the fifth to account for the three runs. In that fourth inning Justin Turner singled to center and one out later Enrique Hernandez singled him to second. Logan Forsythe’s ground-rule double that hopped over the short wall in the left field corner scored Turner to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. Yasiel Puig’s fielder’s choice grounder to short got Hernandez in to score for a 2-0 lead. Forsythe smartly distracted the Colorado infielders by getting caught in a rundown that allowed the run to score.
In the bottom of the fifth, Chris Taylor walked and Austin Barnes’ grounder was flubbed by Nolan Arenado, but he was able to recover and retire Taylor at second base. After Turner singled Barnes to third, Matt Kemp’s sacrifice fly scores Barnes as Turner is thrown out at second base. Barnes crossed the plate just a hair before the tag at second and the Dodgers go up by a 3-0 score.
That was all for the Colorado bats. The Dodger bullpen provided actual relief tonight. Pedro Baez got the final out in the top of the seventh inning. Scott Alexander pitched a scoreless top of the eighth inning and then the big man Kenley Jansen retired the side in the top of the ninth, pitching around a two-out single to record his tenth save of the season. The Dodgers win!
For the record the Dodgers optioned right hander JT Chargois to Oklahoma City before the game and recalled left hander Edward Paredes. Paredes did not appear in the game. Notably Maeda was just one strikeout shy of his career high. His ERA now sits at 3.38. The Dodgers have now picked up five games in the National League West standings over the last week. What do you know? The Dodgers have won consecutive series. Oh and Clayton Kershaw threw a 54-pitch bullpen session and may be just days away from returning. Things are starting to look up.
The Dodgers will take a scheduled day off on Thursday before the Padres come into town for the weekend. The red-hot Ross Stripling takes the mound against Clayton Richard on Friday night in the series opener.