If there was one guy who could snap the Dodgers out of their early season suck its Clayton Kershaw. If he can’t do it then nobody can. For the record he couldn’t despite allowing just two earned runs on six hits over six frames on Tuesday night as the Dodgers dropped their fourth consecutive game losing to the Dbacks 4-3.
Kershaw wasn’t his vintage brilliant self but he was good enough to stake the Dodgers to a 3-2 lead over Arizona before giving way to the bullpen in the seventh inning. But the Dodgers have a collection of gas cans in that dreadful pen and as usual they blew it. This time it was Adam Liberatore who got the call to ruin another game to the best team in the National League.
Dodgers 3 4 1
Dbacks 4 10 1
In case you were wondering who the best team in the National League is that’s the Arizona Dbacks who the Dodgers are looking up at from fourth place in the National League West, nine games behind. The Dodgers are now 12-17 and look every bit as awful as their record indicates. I can talk about how putrid the 2018 Dodgers are all day long. So don’t get me started. For now let’s look at how they lost another game to a divisional rival.
The Dodgers oddly had a 2-1 lead early despite doing their usual with the bats, stranding runners. The Dodgers hit into two double plays in the first three frames. In the top of the first Chris Taylor singled and Joc Pederson was hit by a pitch before Yasmani Grandal grounded into a double play. They did not score.
They grounded into another double play in the top of the third when Taylor singled again and Joc did the honors in that inning. They were actually able to score though when Cody Bellinger bombed one deep into the Phoenix night with Grandal aboard to give the Dodgers a 2-1 lead. Just think what could have been had Joc “Meet me in the middle” Pederson hadn’t grounded into that darn double play.
The Dodger bats didn’t do anything the rest of the game. They did not get one hit the remainder of the game drawing 4 walks and a hit by pitch. The Dodgers were able to plate one more run in the fourth only because of charitable Arizona defense. Chase Utley’s fly to left was misplayed when the ball clanked off of Daniel Descalso’s mitt and he came around to score on a Max Muncy grounder. That’s three runs on four hits and 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position. Arizona starter Matt Koch had an easy time (everyone does against the Dodger hitters) tossing five innings and striking out three and allowing just four hits. He didn’t factor into the decision but I’m sure he was snickering after every inning.
Kershaw allowed two home runs both solo shots to the red-hot A.J. Pollack in the second and the other to pinch-hitter Christian Walker in the fifth. Pollack now leads the NL in home runs with 10 after his three-run home run performance last night. Walker’s shot pulled the Dbacks within one run as the Dodgers clung to a 3-2 lead. After laboring through the fifth inning Kershaw tossed a 123 sixth frame. He made 101 pitches and got the Dodgers into the seventh with a one-run lead.
Unfortunately the Dodgers went to the gas cans in the bottom of the seventh. Adam Liberatore was the latest clown to trot out from the bullpen and immediately give up a lead. It happened within minutes as Arizona plated two in the seventh to take a 4-3 lead. Here’s how the latest disaster happened.
Deven Marrero and John Ryan Murphy (all-stars within their own right) both single. Descalso triples into the right field corner to score both runners and that was it. Right hander JT Chargois was able to restore order and retire the side, but it was too little too late. Andrew Chaffin, Silvino Bracho, Archie Bradley, and Brad Boxberger real actual relievers tossed four scoreless frames to secure the win for Arizona. They collectively gave up no hits, three walks and struck out four. The Dodgers have now lost seven out of eight to Arizona this year and unfortunately there are two more games left in this series.
Look even the biggest optimists can see this Dodger club is not a contender and it doesn’t take glasses or a magnifying glass to do so. Nine games back on May 1 and nobody being held accountable. Let’s not mince words; we’ve known each other far too long. The Dodgers stink.
The series continues on Wednesday evening for game 3 as the Dodgers look to dig themselves deeper into the division cellar. Southpaw Hyun-jin Ryu will try and somehow get the Dodgers out of their funk while the Dbacks look to take the series behind Zack Godley. Guess how that one is going to turn out?