Dodgers 0 6 0
Diamondbacks 1 6 0
WP- Putz (1-0)
LP- Beckett (0-2)
Josh Beckett made what probably was his best start as a Dodger on Sunday afternoon, but the Dodgers total lack of offense off Trevor Cahill and Don Mattingly‘s strange management of the bottom of the ninth inning cost Beckett the win and the Dodgers the series. Beckett pitched 8 1/3 innings, allowing 1 run on 6 hits while striking out 9 Snakes and walking 1 on 102 pitches. Beckett and Cahill were locked in a pitcher’s duel, but the D-backs struck in the bottom of the ninth inning after Mattingly failed to go to the bullpen when needed. It didn’t matter much though since the Dodger offense was still comatose. Adrian Gonzalez had three hits in the game, but a struggling Matt Kemp struck out thrice. Here’s how it played out…
Trevor Cahill isn’t involved in the decision, but he keeps the Dodgers at bay per usual. Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Trevor Cahill sends the Dodgers down in order in the top of the first inning. The right-hander gets Matt Kemp to strike out swinging. Matty is really struggling right now.
Adrian Gonzalez opens up the second inning with a line drive single to center. Andre Ethier flies out. A.J. Ellis strikes out swinging. Luis Cruz hits a ball to center field, but Parra slides to make the catch for the third out.
Nick Punto is caught looking at strike three in the top of the third. Beckett grounds out, and Crawford flies out to end the frame.
Cliff Pennington singles to center with one out in the bottom of the third. Trevor Cahill strikes out while attempting to bunt. Parra singles on a ground ball to right field. Martin Prado drives the ball to right field, but thankfully Ethier is there to make the third out.
Mark Ellis grounds out, and Matt Kemp strikes out for the second time in the top of the fourth. With two outs, Adrian Gonzalez singles off the glove of Pennington. Andre Ethier follows with a single as well. A.J. Ellis grounds out, and the Dodgers strand both runners. Still no score.
A.J. Pollack comes in to pinch-hit for Aaron Hill, and he breaks his bat on a ground out. Hill’s left wrist is bothering him from being hit by a pitch the other day. Matt Kemp makes a great catch on a sharply hit ball by Miguel Montero. That would have been extra bases for sure. Goldy singles on a line drive to center. Eric Chavez strikes out swinging to end the inning.
Luis Cruz grounds out, and he’s now batting an abysmal .094. Nick Punto reaches safely on a drag bunt ground ball, and we get to see the first Punto head first slide into first base of the year! Beckett grounds into an inning ending double play, and we are still scoreless in Arizona.
Cody Ross strikes out swinging in the fifth. Pennington hits a long double to left center field with one out. Cahill hits a long fly ball, and Matt Kemp makes another nice play for the out. Ross tags up to third on the play. Parra rolls out to second, and the D-backs strand Ross at third.
The Dodgers go down quickly in the sixth. Both pitchers are locked in.
Beckett has a nice 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the sixth. He strikes out Montero which gives him 6 Ks.
Adrian Gonzalez smashes a double over Parra’s head in center field. That’s Gonzo’s third hit of the game! Ethier hits a soft line drive, and Martin Prado goes up the ladder to rob Dre of a base hit. A.J. flies out to shallow center. Cruz grounds to third, and the Dodgers waste Gonzalez’s lead-off double.
Matt Kemp strikes out three times in Sunday’s game. Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Josh Beckett whiffs Goldschmidt for the second time of the game to begin the bottom of the seventh. Chavez strikes out. Beckett now has 8 Ks. Ross grounds out, and Beckett is sailing smoothly.
Nick Punto singles to lead-off the eighth for the Dodgers. He’s now hitting .600. Beckett puts down a good bunt this time to move Punto over to second. Kirk Gibson pulls the plug on Cahill, and he brings in left-hander Tony Sipp to face Crawford. Punto moves to third base on a groundout by Crawford. Then another pitching change for Arizona as righty Brad Ziegler comes in. Mark Ellis grounds out on the very first pitch he sees, and the Dodgers fail to score.
Trevor Cahill pitched 7 1/3 innings, allowing no runs on 6 hits, with 4 strikeouts and no walks on 93 pitches.
Eric Hinske strikes out in the bottom of the eighth. Parra grounds out, and we head to the ninth.
J.J. Putz will pitch the ninth for the D-backs. Matt Kemp strikes out again. That’s his third strikeout of the game. Gonzalez grounds out. Ethier draws a two-out walk. With A.J. at the plate, Ethier is thrown out trying to steal second.
Beckett is back out there for the bottom of the ninth. Pollack smacks a double to the gap on a 0-2 count. Mattingly for some reason takes out Crawford and puts Schumaker in left field, but he leaves Beckett in the game while Paco Rodriguez is warming up. I guess because Crawford’s arm isn’t 100% yet. They intentionally walk Montero. Goldschmidt squeaks one past Mark Ellis, and the D-backs walk-off with the win as Pollack plates the winning run. Beckett picks up the “heartbreaking defeat,” as Vinny calls it.
While Beckett pitched a wonderful game, Mattingly left him in one inning too long. He should have gone to the pen and brought in Jansen to hold the bottom of the ninth. The Dodgers drop the series in Arizona, and they split the road series.
Tomorrow the Dodgers host the San Diego Padres as tempers are tested in a 7:10 p.m. game Chad Billingsley will take the mound to open the homestand.