Trainwreck: Dodgers Lose Momentum in World Series Game 3 Loss

Darvish

I came into this game with high hopes as the World Series shifted to Houston for game 3. With the series tied and the Dodgers coming off a heart breaking loss in game 2 it seemed as if the Dodgers had the advantage in the third game with Yu Darvish on the mound. The pitching match-up seemed favorable for the Dodgers. With Darvish going up against curveball specialist Lance McCullers Jr.

It looked like the Dodgers had the edge, considering Darvish had been dominating in his previous two postseason starts. Unfortunately Darvish was atrocious allowing four earned runs on six hits and getting knocked out in the second inning. He didn’t strike out a single batter as the Dodgers fell behind 4-0. The bats could never catch up resulting in a 5-3 loss. The final score was a lot closer than it actually was.

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World Series Game 3-Houston Leads 2-1

Dodges 3 4 0

Astros   5 12 0

WP-McCullers-1-0

LP-Darvish-0-1

SV-Peacock-1

HR-Gurriel-1

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Embed from Getty Images

McCullers on the other hand was very effective allowing three earned runs on four hits across 5.1 innings of work. He struck out three and walked four. Despite shaky command he was able to work out of jams as the Dodgers were unable to capitalize on scoring opportunities. Brad Peacock tossed 3.2 scoreless innings in relief allowing just a walk and striking out four. The Dodgers were 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position.

Yuli Gurriel hit a massive home run in the bottom of the second inning and former Dodger Josh Reddick contributed with two hits and Brian McCann collected three base knocks to lead the Houston offense. The Astros had 12 hits. The Dodgers got just four hits and looked totally lost at the plate all night. Terrible plate approaches pulled the Dodgers away from their normal hitting strategies. The Dodger bats were unable to work counts and swung at pitches outside the strike zone the entire game. Cody Bellinger struck out four times, becoming the youngest player to do so in a World Series game since Mickey Mantle.

Darvish looked horrendous from the first inning. His off-speed command was non-existent. He barely escaped trouble in the bottom of the first. George Springer immediately led off the game with a booming double. Alex Bregman’s grounder and Jose Altuve’s deep fly to center got the Dodgers two quick outs. With Springer at third Carlos Correa grounded to Seager to end the inning.

After McCullers shut down the Dodgers in the top of the second, The Astros touched up Darvish for four runs in the bottom half. Gurriel blasted a home run to lead-off the inning and then made an obscene racist gesture in the dugout. Classy. Reddick doubled to left and Evan Gattis walked. A coaching visit to the mound did nothing to stop the onslaught. Marwin Gonzalez singled to left to score Reddick to make it 2-0 Houston. Brian McCann’s single to right brought home Gattis to extend the lead to 3-0. After a Springer line out to Forsythe, Bregman’s sacrifice fly made it 4-0 Houston and essentially ended the game. Altuve doubled and the Dodgers were forced to remove Darvish. Kenta Maeda came in and quickly restored order tossing 2.2 scoreless innings. Darvish might have been pathetic, but Maeda was a godsend for the Dodgers. Thank you King Kenta!

With Maeda in restoring order, the Dodger bats could go to work chipping away at the lead. In the top of the third McCullers lost his control issuing three consecutive walks (Joc Pederson, Enrique Hernandez, Chris Taylor) to load the bases with nobody out. The Dodgers had him on the ropes, but of course couldn’t get more than a measly run across. Corey Seager chased a pitch up in the zone and grounded into a double play. A run did come home to score but the Dodgers wasted a golden opportunity to get back in the game. Justin Turner grounded out for the third out. Astros 4 Dodgers 1 after two and a half.

More outs in the top of the fourth. Bellinger whiffed and Puig chopped a single that deflected off of Correa, but he was thrown out trying to take second. Logie Bear flied out. Maeda struck out Springer and Bregman in the bottom of the fourth to keep the Dodgers in it.

The Dodgers got a one-out double from Joc in the top of the fifth, but Hernandez and Taylor made out so they didn’t score. Tony Watson replaced Maeda in the bottom of the fifth with one out. Gurriel grounds out but Reddick walked. A huge throwing error from Watson on a Gattis dribble to the mound allows Reddick to come around and score to make it a 5-1 game.

The Dodgers battled back in the sixth. Seager walked. Turner doubles down the line in left to put runners at second and third. The Dodgers again couldn’t get a hit with runners in scoring position. Bellinger whiffed again. Puig’s grounder scored Seager but now there’s two outs. With Brad Peacock on the mound, a wild pitch scores Turner and the Dodgers are within two. Astros 5 Dodgers 3. Pinch-hitter Chase Utley pops out.

Brandon Morrow pitches the bottom of the sixth inning. He works around a throwing error from Turner and a walk to strike out Altuve and Correa. Dodgers still trail by two. The Dodgers did nothing in the top of the seventh and then dickface Gurriel doubles to lead-off the bottom half of the seventh. Roberts hooks Morrow and brings in left hander tony Cingrani. Reddick pops a bunt up in the air for Bellinger to make a nice diving catch. There’s an intentional walk and then a pop out. After a ground ball single the Astros load the bases. Ross Stripling comes in to get the last out of the frame. Springer crushes a deep fly ball to center but thankfully Taylor catches it in front of the wall.

Peacock sets the Dodgers down again in the top of the eighth with Seager and Bellinger whiffing pathetically. Move to the top of the ninth with Peacock staying in to finish the game. Puig strikes out. Utley grounds out and after a battle, Yasmani Grandal pops out to right to end it. Finale score: Astros 5 Dodgers 3.

The Astros now take a 2-1 series lead as FOX rejoices. I said I wouldn’t worry unless the Dodgers lost game 3. Now I’m worried. Tomorrow the Dodgers will send Alex Wood (Mr. 4 innings) to the mound as the Astros will counter with Charlie Morton. The Dodgers may be in serious trouble.

Gulp.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda’s Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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13 thoughts on “Trainwreck: Dodgers Lose Momentum in World Series Game 3 Loss

  1. Not this momentum silliness again.

    Will the team chemistry and grit be strong enough to overcome the lack of momentum??!?!?!?

    Three factoids that bear mentioning:

    1. The combo of Taylor, Seager, Turner and Bellinger went 1-for-13 tonight. The lineup has always been top-heavy. That’s the downside.

    2. Cody Bellinger, 22, is the 2nd youngest player to whiff 4 times in a WS game. Mickey Mantle is the youngest at 21.

    3. Ross Stripling notched one fewer out in game 3 than Yu Darvish.

    1. I like this possibility, YF. Or, you can reverse it for those who cannot admit that Seager is not a great SS. I’ll take Maury Wills or Bill Russell.

      Does anyone really have confidence that the Dodgers will win the series at this point? We might be looking at another meltdown before our very eyes.

      We saw Yu meltdown tonight. This was how he came to us until his last few games where he seemingly regained control of his game. I remember a criticism of him I posted a couple of months ago about his inability to get a handle on his pitching. This was the worst time to fall apart for us. Unreliable. Roberts was correct to pull him.

      If our starting pitching is going to give up runs early as Hill and Yu did, at least the bats might come alive to save the day. However, even though we came close in Game 2, the Dodger bats have been atrocious except for HR’s that have saved our ass at times. We just can’t seem to hit consistently and this has been our nemesis for some years now. We slide in and out of slumps like no other team I can remember. What do we do?

      Most of the peripheral players that we have are not consistent producers. A couple of starters or former starters like Joc and Grandal, don’t help us very much most of the time. Let’s cash them in. Forsythe is a big question mark still as he blows hot and cold but fields well. Puig is our only outfielder who is a fixture in RF. Is Taylor a CF or LF? If he’s going to play CF, let’s go get a starting LF player through trade or farm system. Is Toles that player? Quite simple to me.

      Our bullpen is good to go. Minor tweaks here or there. 3 of our starters are solid, CK, RH & Wood. I wouldn’t pay Yu top money at this point. I fear FAZ will try to make Maeda, McCarthy our #4 and 5 starters. Weak decision, or even Stripling. Maeda is terrific in the pen. Let’s go get some fresh blood.

      1. Chill out Jeff.

        This team doesn’t “slide in and out of slumps like no other team” THEY WON THE MOST GAMES!

        They do it the least.

      2. Jeff

        Corey has good defensive sabermetric numbers, and he is a finalist for a gold glove, so that is not going to happen soon.

  2. First. When the heart of your lineup goes 1-13, you are not going to win very many games. When your # 4 hitter is flailing at pitches a mouse could not hit, and strikes out 4 times, you are probably going to lose. When your starting pitcher puts you in a 4-0 hole before the seats are warm on the road, you most likely are going to lose. McCullers is not Verlander, and Charlie Morton who pitches tomorrow is a former NL player the Dodgers have seen plenty of times. DR is still wearing out his bullpen at an alarming rate. Considering what I saw from Morrow tonight, DR should let the guy get out of his own jams instead of going to Jansen for a 6 out save. Turner is 2-13 Seager is 3-11 Bellinger is 0-11 with 7 K’s Taylor is 1-9 Puig is 2-12 Barnes is 1-9 the team is batting .161. Remind you of anything? In 1966 against the Orioles the Dodgers hit about .150. The Stros are hitting .266 in the series, and they have 14 more hits than the Dodgers do. The good news is that they have only scored 2 more runs. Hernandez, Pederson and Culberson are the only players hitting over .300 in the series. Joc, Turner and Seager all are tied for the lead in total bases based on the fact they all have hit HR’s. Each team has 6 dingers. But unless Cody finds his groove they are going to be hard pressed to score a lot. I move him out of the 4 hole IMMEDIATELY. Maybe hit him second in front of Seager and Turner. But something needs to change quick. Here is hoping we see the Wood of early summer tomorrow and get some innings from the kid. They go down 3-1, they will be hard pressed to win this thing.

    1. The most disappointing thing about last night’s game, was that Darvish couldn’t do his job.

      We went out and got Darvish to help Kershaw in the post season, and Darvish has a meltdown, much like Kershaw had in our last post season game, last year, against the Cubs.

      The other most disappointing thing that happened in last nights game, was that Corey and Turner came up to bat, after the bottom of our line up, made the pitcher pitch to them, and the pitcher walked the bases loaded, and Corey and Turner instead of making the pitcher pitch to them, they went after his first three pitches, and we only scored one run, because of this.

      It is so frustrating seeing major league players, not being as smart as a little league player is.

      When a pitcher has just walked the bases loaded, any little leaguer knows you don’t go up there, and swing early in the wild pitcher’s count!

  3. Bluto,

    They also went into the worst losing streak afterwards! Your memory is very short. You haven’t been watching this team carefully for the last few years, methinks.

    Nevermind, I’m hoping for the best.

    1. So, you are defining the majority of the season as a streak? Countered, in some part, by a three week spell with shifting lineups and questionable motivation.

      I define the team’s “normal” state as how they played in accumulating more than 100 wins. I define the small lapse at the end of the season as the only “streak”

      Nevermind, I’m also hoping for the best.

  4. This could be a good game to give Andre a start. He had a great at bat last night. Maybe you even sit Bellinger for a game to let him chill and straighten out his approach–he seems super tight to me, like he thinks he should win it all by himself.

    1. He should have started last nights game. He was 2-2 against McCullers. And I would not hesitate to hit him 4th in place of Cody.

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