Eight-Run Inning Propels Dodgers Over Rockies Despite Hernandez’s Wild Start


When a last place team takes on a first place team sometimes the game can be quite lopsided especially if you are playing in the unpredictable Coors Field. Coors Field has been the Dodgers’ enemy many times in the past, but on Monday night the thin air and the atmosphere of poorly played baseball gave the Dodgers a fun romp in the forest.

Roberto Hernandez struggled again. He was wild, and he couldn’t get out of the third inning. Don Mattingly made the smart move to yank him before any further damage was done. Things can quickly spin out of control in Colorado.

Sep 15, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Perdo Hernandez (55) reacts as he walks to the dugout after being taken out of the game during the fourth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Kemp blasted his 21st homerun in the first inning, and Kemp’s comeback season keeps getting better and better. 2011 doesn’t seem so far away anymore.

The Rockies are really really bad. They squandered away countless scoring opportunities, and they could not execute a squeeze, and they left 8 men on base. The Dodgers on the other hand, took advantage of the lowly Rockies, and they even got a hit with the bases loaded, gasp! (thank you Justin Turner). The Dodgers left 9 men on base, but they were 8-for-18 with runners in scoring position.

The top of the sixth inning was all sorts of fun. Eight runs, a season-high for the Dodgers, crossed the plate in the long inning. The Dodgers kept piling it on, and I enjoyed every moment. There were 7 base hits, a hit batter and a walk. It was glorious.

During the sixth inning, the camera caught Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp arguing. It seemed like Kemp was fired up. I’m not sure what that was about, but it was a strange time to fight during one of the best innings of the year.

Dodgers 11 15 1

Rockies 3 10 0

WP- Jamey Wright (5-4)

LP- Bergman (2-4)

HR- Kemp (21)

I love Bison Blasts! The Dodgers took a quick and early 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Yasiel Puig singled off Christian Bergman, and then Matt Kemp homered to right center field! Kemp is back with a vengeance, and it’s truly exciting to watch.

Roberto Hernandez walked the first batter he saw, Charlie Blackmon, in the home half the first. Blackmon stole third base when the ball got away from A.J. Ellis with Justin Morneau at the plate. Juan Uribe made a great play on a grounder by Morneau. Uribe threw home, and the Dodgers got Blackmon out in a rundown between third and home. Morneau took second, and he easily scored on a Michael Cuddyer double down the third base line in the next at-bat. Corey Dickerson flied out to Puig in center to end the inning, but the Rox got one back.

Juan Uribe led off the second with a single and got to second with two outs after Hernandez sacrificed him over. Dee Gordon couldn’t

Sep 15, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Dee Gordon (9) and pinch hitter Justin Turner (10) celebrate after scoring during the sixth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

come up clutch, and he struck out against Bergman.

Hernandez looked awful at this point. A huge no-doubt Wilin Rosario homerun started off the awkward frame by Hernandez. He threw away a pitch wildly to D.J. LeMahieu who then tripled to right field. The Rockies then attempted a squeeze, but it failed miserably. LeMahieu is tagged out by A.J. This is a reason that the Rockies are in last place. That was a very poor attempt at a squeeze play. Some dumb luck for Hernandez, who somehow only allowed one run in the shaky inning.

Bergman sent down the Dodgers in order in the top of the third. Yasiel Puig grounded out, and he seemed to be limping a bit. Adrian Gonzalez and Matt Kemp both struck out.

Other than a Josh Rutledge single, Hernandez didn’t allow any further damage in the bottom of the third.

Boom goes CC! Carl Crawford tripled to right field with one out in the fourth. Bergman intentionally walked A.J. to get to Hernandez after Uribe grounded out. The plan worked, and Hernandez whiffed. CC’s beautiful triple was sadly wasted.

Hernandez almost hit Wilin Rosario with another sketchy pitch. Rosario countered with a single with one out in the bottom of the fourth. Rafael Ynoa followed with a single of his own. Hernandez continued to be shakier than a rickety bridge. Meanwhile Paco Rodriguez was getting loose in the bullpen. Hernandez walked LeMahieu to load the bases up for the Rockies. Rick Honeycutt tried to go out to calm down Hernandez and let Paco warm up. Hernandez reared back to strike out Bergman, but there was still one out remaining. Don Mattingly brought the hook, and in came Paco!

After going 2-1 to Blackmon, Paco induced a groundout to short. The Rockies left the bases loaded, and Mattingly made the good decision to cut Hernandez’s wild start short.

In the top of the fifth, Dee Gordon popped a base hit to shallow center field. Blackmon couldn’t get there, and Gordon took advantage to create a double. Puig hit a deep fly ball just ahead of the warning track in center field. Gordon tagged up after Blackmon caught up to the well hit ball. Adrian Gonzalez doubled to right field, after striking out twice, and Dee Gordon brought in the tie-breaking third Dodger run. Hanley had a 3-0 count against Bergman, but he ended up striking out. That was a bad at-bat by Ramirez, but the Dodgers still took the 3-2 lead.

Roberto Hernandez only made 59 pitches over 3 2/3 innings pitched. He allowed 2 runs on 6 hits with 1 strikeout and 2 walks.

The Rockies tied it up at three apiece in the bottom of the fifth. Jamey Wright came in to pitch, and he allowed singles to Morneau and

Sep 15, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez (23) hits an RBI double during the fifth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

Dickerson which netted a run for the Rockies.

Bergman hit Crawford in the arm with a pitch to start off the sixth. Uribe and Ellis hit back-to-back singles, and that would be the end of the line for Bergman. Rex Brothers was brought in to pitch to pinch-hitter Justin Turner with the bases loaded and nobody out. Turner, pinch-hitter extraordinaire, came up with a big clutch double to right field. Crawford and Uribe both scored. Dee Gordon continued the onslaught with a RBI single to left. The Dodgers ran Brothers right out of the game. He couldn’t even get one out, and the Dodgers took a 6-3 lead.

Nick Masset was the third Colorado pitcher. Meanwhile, Mark Trumbo hit a grand slam off Ryan Vogelsong at Chase Field. Dee Gordon drew a walk, and Adrian Gonzalez was up with the bases loaded. Two more RBIs for Gonzo! A single to right brought in Gordon and Turner. Dodgers took a commanding 8-3. The first out of the inning finally came when Matt Kemp struck out. Hanley Ramirez was the ninth batter of the inning for the Dodgers. Hanley hit a gorgeous double to right center. Puig brought in the sixth run of the inning. Gonzo brought in the seventh after tagging up on a fly ball by Crawford. The eighth run of the inning came in on a Uribe double. 11-3 Dodgers. The inning finally ended when A.J. Ellis grounded out to third.

Christian Bergman pitched 5 innings and allowed 6 runs on 9 hits with 7 strikeouts and 1 walk on 97 pitches.

Pedro Baez was on the job in the bottom of the sixth, and he only allowed a single to Kyle Parker in the scoreless frame.

Matt Belisle was the next pitcher for the Rox. The Dodgers’ 15th hit of the night came off the bat of Yasiel Puig in the top of the seventh. His 35th double of the year, a fly ball to right, came with two outs in the frame. That was the Dodgers’ 6th double of the game, a season high. Gonzo grounded out, but it’s okay. After all Gonzo now leads the National League with 106 RBI.

Brandon League came in and hit consecutive batters. Not really instilling confidence there, Brandon. Luckily he can still induce a ground ball, and Michael Cuddyer grounded into the double play. Dickerson grounded out, and League wiggled out of that bad start to the inning.

Brooks Brown retired Matt Kemp on a ground out to third in the top of the eighth. Christian Friedrich was brought in to face Andre Ethier. Ethier struck out swinging. Carl Crawford was hit by a pitch in the back of the leg. Uribe walked. Joc Pederson replaced Uribe as a pinch-runner, but A.J. Ellis hit a line drive comebacker to Friedrich to end the inning.

Brian Wilson was in for the bottom of the eighth. Scott Van Slyke came in to play first base, Ethier remained in the game in right field, and Joc Pederson is the left fielder. Rosario came up with his third hit of the night, but Rafael Ynoa grounded into a double play turned by Miguel Rojas to Gordon to Van Slyke.

Chris Perez was asked to shut down the Rockies in the bottom of the ninth. Erisbel Arruebarrena committed an error with one out on a Blackmon grounder which squirted away from him. Josh Rutledge and Matt McBride both struck out, and Perez ended up striking out the side.

Even though Hyun-jin Ryu‘s left shoulder inflammation didn’t make me feel good about Hernandez’s bad start, I’m glad the Dodgers were able to come up some late-season fireworks the last few games. Other than Jamey Wright’s one earned run, the Dodger bullpen didn’t allow any other runs. Ironically Wright secured the win.

The Dodgers improved to 86-64. The D-backs were beating up on San Francisco, and if they should lose the Dodgers gain a game and lead the Giants by 4 games lowering their Magic Number to 9. Dan Haren will take the mound for the Dodgers on Tuesday. Left-hander Tyler Matzek will start for the Rockies in Game 2.