I’m almost at a loss for words. The Dodger’s bullpen misery continued on Monday evening as Scott Alexander once again deconstructed on the mound allowing the Giants to score four runs in the top of the ninth to erase what was a 2-1 Dodger lead handing the Dodgers their fourth consecutive crushing loss. The bullpen has now blown four consecutive games with Alexander blowing two of them. Why that bum was allowed to get anywhere near this game with a lead in the ninth inning is beyond my comprehension. Yes that’s on Dave Roberts but remember that Andrew Friedman and Farhan Zaidi put that guy on the roster. I’ve been saying since the season began how bad that stupid trade was.
For the first eight innings the game was a classic pitching duel between Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner with the Dodgers coming out of it with a one-run advantage. Kershaw was in vintage form striking out nine and allowing just one run on four hits over eight excellent frames. Kershaw’s slider was electric and the ace did what he has done for the last decade. He put the club on his back almost single handedly defeating the stupid Giants. Kershaw even drove in one of the two runs with a flare double into shallow left field. What a shame that Alexander ruined his fantastic start.
Bumgarner was tough too and the Dodgers got some breaks in order to score their two runs off of him. Bumgarner allowed a run in the fourth and fifth innings as the Dodgers took a 2-0 lead. Bumgarner finished with four strikeouts, two walks and limited the Dodgers to two earned runs on seven hits over six frames.
Giants 5 8 0
Dodgers 2 8 1
In the bottom of the fourth, Austin Barnes reached on a ground ball single. Kershaw followed with a flare into shallow left field that fell in between Brandon Crawford and Evan Longoria. Crawford and Longoria collided as Barnes scored while the ball dropped in. The baseball gods had smiled upon us. Finally something that went the Dodger’s way. Crawford had to leave the game with a neck/head injury. The play looked scary with Crawford hitting his head and rolling over on the grass. Hopefully Crawford wasn’t seriously hurt on the play. Dodgers lead 1-0. The boys in blue added another run in the bottom of the fifth when the red-hot Justin Turner homered into the left field pavilions to put the Dodgers ahead 2-0. Turner is starting to find his groove at the plate, and thank god he’s back to form.
The Giants got on the board in the top of the sixth when Steven Duggar singled, Bumgarner singled past the third base bag and Andrew McCutchen’s force out scored Duggar to cut the lead to 2-1. The Dodgers stayed with Kershaw as long as they could. Kershaw got three consecutive ground outs in the top of the seventh and then got through the top of the eighth with the Dodgers still leading 2-1. Then the top of the ninth came around and the Dodgers threw up all over the field.
First Roberts made an ill-advised double-switch, putting Max Muncy at first and moving Cody Bellinger into the outfield. Muncy is a good hitter but not the smoothest fielder in the world. His error was costly, but in the end meaningless. That’s because Scott Alexander, lousy reliever is unable to get out major league hitters. As usual the inning started out fine with a McCutchen ground out. The Giants then got four singles, a hit batter and a fielding error. All of this off Alexander. You ready for the pain? Chase d’Arnaud singles. Buster Posey followed with a single. Evan Longoria’s grounder to third was close to being a double play but the Dodgers only got a force at second. With runners at first and third and one out and the Dodger Stadium crowd literally screaming, frothing at the mouth for Roberts to take out Alexander, he stood there like a statue and let the game get away.
Alexander then hit Austin Slater with a pitch to load the bases. Again, Roberts does nothing. I thought Dodger Stadium was going to collapse into anarchy with the crowd running onto the field and devouring Alexander like the zombies in the walking dead. I would think that even a zombie would have had a better chance at getting the last out.
Alexander was allowed to stay in and of course pinch-hitter Nick Hundley, the Giants damn backup catcher singled in the tying and go-ahead runs to put the Giants up 3-2. Even after that Roberts still left Alexander in. Gorkys Hernandez singled in another run and then promptly stole second. Then Duggar hit a routine grounder to first that Muncy fumbled all over the field. It was a grounder to first! This was a real life Buckner moment and it cost the Dodgers another run, the fourth of the inning. Not like it mattered. The game was lost as soon as Alexander touched the mound. Pedro Baez of all people had to come in and clean up the mess.
It’s almost unexplainable how bad the Dodger bullpen is right now. I’ve said it before earlier in the season, the Dodgers are simply not very good this year. Sure that’s a simplified answer, but if you want a more defined explanation, I can give you one. The roster is poorly built. The relief pitching is lousy. The hitting is inconsistent. The players are injury prone and the defense is sloppy. All in all the Dodgers are not a championship caliber club. On the bright side we should have plenty of free time this October to go out to dinner, or visit family. We’ll also be a lot less stressed.
Oh and if things couldn’t be any worse for the Dodgers, we get hit with this news after the game. Awesome.
John Axford has a fracture in his fibula after being hit in the leg. Out 2-3 weeks. Brian Dozier has an abnormal EKG. More tests needed.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) August 14, 2018
Luckily Bartolo Colon and the Rangers beat the Snakes and the Dodgers are still only one game back. Scott Alexander should be immediately released. Not tomorrow, not after breakfast, but right now as I am typing this. Either changes are made now, or the losing goes on.
And on and on it will go. The Dodgers look to get embarrassed again by the Giants on Tuesday night in the second game of the three game series. Andrew Suarez, another left hander (yay!) will counter Alex Wood with first pitch scheduled for 7:10 PM PST.