Baseball is a crazy game. You just can’t predict it. After a rousing four game sweep in Philadelphia, the Dodgers come to the emerald city and got combined no-hit by the lowly fourth place Mariners. Of course we ran into and were unable to hit the zombie corpse of Kevin Millwood before he had to leave because of injury. However it is only one game-means nothing. Just another poignant moment among many during the long season. Go figure. For the Mariners however, they celebrated like it was 1999. Of course they did. What else do they have to celebrate? So when the Dodgers came out today guns ablazing so to speak, it didn’t surprise me. Let the little basement dwellers have their moment. That was yesterday, and this is today.
Of course the talk today was all about Clayton Kershaw’s injured foot, and whether it was really affecting him or not. I would say not. With Kershaw and his prestigious digits on our minds, him and his foot took the mound against Seattle to get the Dodgers back on track.
The Dodgers turned the page today, and staked Clayton Kershaw to an early 3-0 lead on a three-run home run by Jerry Hairston. Jhair was the offensive star today driving in five runs with two doubles and the three run shot. Loney added an RBI single, and the Dodgers scored eight runs, five of them off of opposing starter Jason Vargas. That was all Kershaw and his foot would need as he picked up his fifth win of the season, pitching seven innings and whiffing 12 Seattle batters. The only blemish on the game for Kershaw was a hanging pitch to Jesus Montero for a three-run shot over the Seattle bullpen in the top of the fourth. The Dodgers improved to a MLB best 38-22 with their 8-3 win over Seattle. Here is how it went down today.
Top of the first. Dee Gordon begins the game with an infield single to short. The Dodgers first hit since the ninth inning of the last game in Philadelphia. After Elian Herrera whiffs, Gordon steals second without a throw. Rivera fouls out to Justin Smoak. Andre Ethier draws a walk. Jerry Hairston Jr. sends a hanging Jason Vargas fastball into the left field seats just inside the foul pole for a three-run home run. James Loney grounds out to end the frame. Vargas makes 33 pitches in the inning, and the Dodgers lead early 3-0.
Bottom of the first. Ichiro Suzuki leads off with another piddly single to the hole at short. Gordon had no chance to throw him out. Kershaw whiffs Chone Figgins like a Fig Newton. Catcher Jesus Montero doubles over Alex Castellano’s head in right field, sending Ichiro to third (Dre is the DH today). Kershaw whiffs Justin Smoak for the second out. Kershaw finally recovers to also whiff Kyle Seager and escape the inning without damage.
Top of the second. A.J. Ellis leads off with a single to center. Tony Gwynn Jr. flares a blooper into center as well to put two on. Castellanos whiffs on some high Vargas cheese. Gordon grounds into an inning ending double play, and the Dodgers don’t score. Bottom of the second. Miguel Olivo pops out. Kershaw whiffs Michael Saunders for his fourth whiff of the game. Alex Liddi whiffs as well to end the third.
Top of the third. Herrera bloops a single that bounces just underneath the glove of the diving Ichiro in right field. Rivera fouls out to Smoak. Ethier hits into a dinky bloop out. With Hairston batting, Herrera steals second. Jhair then doubles off the wall in left, to score Herrera, and extend the Dodger lead to 4-0. Loney a groundball single up the middle to score Hairston puts the Dodgers up 5-0. With A.J. at the plate, Loney is thrown out trying to steal second for an inning ending TOOTBLAN. However it might have been a busted hit and run play. Brendan Ryan whiffs to start the home half of the third. Ichiro flies out. Figgins whiffs. Kersh has seven whiffs through just three innings.
Top of the fourth. A.J. singles on a grounder to third that Liddi bumbles. That is erased when Gwynn grounds into a 3-6-3 double play. Castellanos pops out to end the frame.
Montero leads off the bottom of the fourth with a pop up. Smoak a one out bloop single in front of Gwynn in center. Seager walks on a borderline pitch. Olivo smashes a three-run home run to center over the Seattle bulpen on a hangng Kershaw meatball, and it’s 5-3 Dodgers. Kersh recovers to whiff Saunders and Liddi, to end the inning.
Gordon grounds out to Smoak, who has to slide to the bag in the fifth. Herrera singles to center. Rivera pops out. Ethier whiffs. Ryan flies out to begin the bottom of the fifth. Ichiro flies to center. Figgins whiffs to end a quick inning for Kershaw, who now has ten whiffs. Top of the sixth. Hairston grounds out. Loney another signature grounder, and AJ pops out.
Montero is hit by a pitch to lead off the bottom of the sixth. He is a bit bruised but otherwise ok. Smoak pops out. With Seager at the plate, Kershaw picks off Montero for the second out. Seager walks. Kershaw has now reached 100 pitches. Olivo fouls out to Loney and the threat is averted.
Top of the seventh. Hisashi Iwakuma, the Japanese righty, relieves Vargas in the top of the seventh. Vargas goes six innings, allowing five runs on nine hits. A lot of two strike hits allowed. One walk and three whiffs. Vargas made 100 pitches. Gordon grounds out as Seager glove flips to Smoak. Saunders pops out to start the bottom of the seventh. Liddi whiffs. 11 whiffs for Kershaw. Ryan whiffs on a high fastball for number 12. 5-3 Dodgers after seven.
Top of the eighth. Herrera whiffs. Rivera singles. Iwakuma is hooked by Seattle manager Eric Wedge. Lefty Lucas Luetge is called in. Ethier pops out to shallow left. Seattle makes yet another pitching change. Enter righty noob Shawn Kelley. Hairston collects his third hit, a double into the gap in right center. Rivera scores, and Hairston has five RBIs. The Dodgers extend their lead to 6-3. Seattle comically intentionally walks Loney to pitch to AJ. Kelley whiffs him swinging, and the inning is over.
Ronald Belisario enters to pitch the bottom of the eighth. Kershaw is lifted after pitching seven innings, allowing three runs, four hits, two walks, and twelve whiffs. He made 117 pitches and recorded mostly all whiffs, pop outs, and fly outs. Ichiro leads off and lines out to Gwynn. The .183 hitting Mike Carp draws a one out walk. Belisario whiffs Montero on an outside slider for the second out. He induces Smoak to pop out to get out of the inning. Dodgers still leading 6-3.
Gwynn leads off the top of the ninth with a single to center off of Kelley. Castellanos flies out into the right fielder corner. Gordon collects his second hit of the day. Gwynn goes to second. Seattle makes another pitching change bringing in the winning pitcher of last night’s combined no-no, Steven Pryor. The Dodgers pull off a double steal of second and third with Herrera at the plate. Herrera chops one to second, Seager throws home but Gwynn slides around the tag safely, and the Dodgers go up 7-3. Rivera’s sac fly scores Gordon to extend the Dodger lead to 8-3. Ethier pops out to end the frame.
Move to the bottom of the ninth with the Dodgers up 8-3, Todd Coffey comes in to get some work. Seager grounds out. Olivo whiffs. Saunders walks, but Liddi flies out, and the Dodgers win 8-3.
Great game today! The Dodgers will conclude their ten game road trip with a 1PM Sunday afternoon rubber game at Seattle. Chad Billingsley will go to the mound looking for his second win in a row. The Mariners will counter with righty Blake Beavin. The Dodgers maintain their four game lead in the NL West. Enjoy your Saturday Dodger fans! Join us tomorrow for more Daily Dodger coverage. Same Dodger Station same Dodger channel! Don’t touch that dial Dodger fans. Go Blue!