Hernandez Awful Again, Dodgers Rally Falls Short
By Scott Andes
Cory Spangenberg people. Cory Spangenberg. Before the game I was standing in the tunnel just outside the Dodger’s media room. Inside this media room there was a young guy in there preparing for an interview. He looked about 12 years old. He definitely wasn’t a Dodger. I asked Will the security guard who he was. I was given an answer. It was Cory Spangenberg. Yes that guy got two hits in tonight’s 6-3 Dodger loss.
A Roberto Hernandez start immediately following a Clayton Kershaw start is like a horrible hangover after an epic night of partying at the playboy mansion. I know Hanley Ramirez committed two more errors tonight, and three of his runs allowed were unearned, but I don’t care. It is clear that Hernandez can never start another game for the Dodgers again. I mean when you can’t get out a starting pitcher batting .150, and a rookie in his first MLB game, then you do not belong pitching in a Major League game.
You are awful Roberto, or whatever your name is today-Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Padres 6 8 1
Dodgers 3 11 2
That’s what happened tonight as Hernandez was predictably terrible. He lasted just three innings, allowing five runs (two earned) on five hits. He walked one and whiffed three. San Diego scored three unanswered runs in the second inning, and two more in the third. They added one more in the eighth off of Jamey Wright. The Dodger’s ninth inning rally fell short. If this were the 2013 Dodgers, I would have said they had a chance to come back from a four run deficit in the bottom of the ninth. But this year’s Dodgers? No chance in hell. Although they did try.
San Diego starter Andrew Cashner wasn’t dominant, but was able to easily out pitch Hernandez’s pathetic pitching. He didn’t have to be great tonight.
That awful third inning all started with two outs. It’s always with the two outs. Hanley flubbed Rymer Liriano’s easy grounder for his first error. Then Amarista singled him to third as Hanley broke to cover second base. Cashner doubled in both runs as Hanley dropped the relay throw for his second error of the inning.
Spangenberg singled in Cashner, and that put the Padres up 3-0. Game over at this point. We know the 2014 Dodgers all too well. The next inning in the third, Hernandez walked Yasmani Grandal, and then gave up a huge two-run home run to Jedd Gyorko which put San Diego up 5-0. Hernandez is just so so so bad.
The Dodgers got a two-run home run from Adrian Gonzalez in the bottom of the sixth. They could have had more because Kemp followed up with a double. But he ran into Carl Crawford’s batted ball like a goofus.
The Dodgers also put on the first two runners in the bottom of the seventh, after Puig and A.J. singled. But Joc Pederson’s pinch-hit fly out killed the rally. Gordon and Hanley followed suit with consecutive force outs.
The Dodgers rallied in the bottom of the ninth. Uribe reached on an infield single against Kevin Quackenbush. After Puig whiffed, pinch-hitter Andre Ethier was hit by a pitch. Justin Turner’s pinch-hit single into right field scored Uribe to make the score 6-3 San Diego. But Gordon would whiff, and Hanley flied out to end the game. But hey Matt Kemp has a 15 game hitting streak now. Silver linings people, silver linings.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Listen Hernandez is pitching so you don’t have to be perfect Andrew-Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Hernandez was close to actually pitching a 123 top of the first inning, but he just can’t do it. Rookie Cory Spangenberg, and left fielder Seth Smith both grounded out. But Yasmani Grandal doubled. Fortunately Jedd Gyorko’s liner to Crawford ended the inning before anything bad happened.
In the Dodger half of the first, Dee Gordon grounds out, and Hanley Ramirez follows with a walk. Hanley steals second, but the Dodgers strand him there after Gonzalez flies to left, and Matt Kemp grounds to third.
The Dodgers implode right on schedule in the top of the second. All with two outs of course. After consecutive ground ball outs to Rene Rivera, and Will Venable, Hanley flubs an easy grounder from Rymer Liriano, that would have got them out of the inning. That’s Hanley error number 1.
Then Amarista singles into left because Hanley broke to cover second base. That put runners at first and third as Liriano advances to third. The awfulness continued, as Hernandez’s crappy pitching took over. Cashner the pitcher, who was batting in the .150’s doubled into the gap to score Liriano, and Amarista. Cashner took third as Hanley couldn’t handle the relay throw for his second error of the inning. Hanley error number 2. The Cashner double put the Padres ahead by a score of 2-0. Then random rookie Cory Spangenberg singled home Cashner to make it 3-0 San Diego. Because why not at this point. Finally Hernandez whiffs Smith to end the inning, but he sucks.
Crawford flies out to the wall in the bottom of the third. Juan Uribe singles and then Yasiel Puig immediately grounds into a double play. Shocking people.
San Diego extends their lead off of the putrid pitching from Hernandez. Grandal walks, and then Jedd Gyorko launches a two-run home run to give the Padres a 5-0 lead. Hernandez whiffs Rivera and Liriano but the damage is done.
In the bottom half of the third, The Dodgers hit the ball hard, but of course get nothing. Remember this is the typical 2014 forfeit type game. So A.J. Ellis flies out to deep right. Alex Guerrero pinch-hits for Hernandez’s spot and lines out to a leaping Amarista. Gordon singles and takes second on a throwing error from Spangenberg, but Hanley lines out to Gyorko.
Yimi Garcia is called into pitch the top of the fourth, and retires the Padres in order. Crawford doubles in the fourth, but they don’t score him of course.
Yimi Garcia finishes off the Padres in the top of the fifth, and the Dodgers do nothing again off of Cashner in the fifth, fully content with their forfeit. Kevin Correia takes over in the top of the sixth. He retires the Padres on two fly outs to center, and grounder to first. We move to the bottom of the sixth.
The Dodgers finally get on the board in the bottom of the sixth. Gordon reaches on a bunt single up the third base line. He advances to second on a broken bat grounder to third from Hanley. Then Gonzalez takes Cashner yard for his 23 home run of the season! The score is now 5-2 San Diego. Kemp immediately doubles off the wall in center field (and Venable’s head), despite a leaping attempt to catch it from Venable.
But Kemp makes a costly base running gaffe by running into Crawford’s grounder to short as he was running to third. Kemp is automatically ruled out, and Crawford reaches first. But Uribe’s force out ends the frame. But the Dodgers have a look at the game now.
Correia sets the Padres down again in the seventh, giving the Dodger’s offense a chance to catch up. The bottom of the seventh inning started with such promise, but quickly sours as most of the Dodger innings did in this game. Consecutive singles from Puig and A.J. put two on with nobody out. Joc Pederson comes off the bench to pinch-hit for Correia’s spot. He works the count to 3-1 before flying out into the left field corner. Then consecutive grounders from Gordon and Hanley insure that the Dodgers don’t score at all.
Of course Jamey Wright just has to give up a run in the top of the eighth. A double from Grandal followed by a single from Gyorko, and then a sacrifice fly to right from Rene Rivera makes the score 6-2 San Diego. Brandon League of all people had to bail him out of the inning.
Left hander Dale Thayer relieves Cashner in the bottom of the eighth. He retires the side in order quickly. The Dodgers had already given up of course.
No, no selfies in a loss guys-Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Chris Perez pitches the top of the ninth, signifying the forfeit. Although it wouldn’t matter because there’s no way the Dodgers will score four runs in the bottom of the ninth anyways.
There’s more drama in the bottom of the ninth. Kevin Quackenbush is tasked with holding the Padre’s 6-2 lead. Uribe reaches on an infield dribbler that San Diego couldn’t handle. Puig then predictably whiffed. That’s what he does now. Andre Ethier pinch-hits for A.J., and is hit by a pitch in his leg. With two on and one out, up comes Justin Turner off the bench. Turner delivers with a RBI single through the hole in right, to score Uribe. That cuts the lead to 6-3.
But that’s the best the Dodgers could do. Gordon works a full count before whiffing, and Hanley flies out to center. Dodgers lose 6-3.
Starting Hernandez in this game was the kiss of death here. Of course the Giants beat Arizona, so the lead goes back to 2.5 games. The Dodgers are now 82-63 on the season.
The Dodgers conclude the home stand with their final game against San Diego. Ian Kennedy will counter Dan Haren Wednesday night at 7:10 PM.