Late Rally Erases Defensive Brain Fart, Dodgers Defeat Padres in Series Opener


It wasn’t easy, and it wasn’t pretty, but the Dodgers came from behind to defeat the Padres 4-3 at Petco Park in the series opener on Friday evening. The Dodgers were winning 2-0 behind Clayton Kershaw until the seventh inning when disaster struck and the Padres scored three unanswered runs. Fortunately the offense bailed the club out by plating two runs in the top of the eighth to put them back on top for good. Both clubs made costly errors late in the game, but it was the throwing error from former Dodger Matt Kemp (Ha!) that really was the difference in the top of the eighth inning for the Dodgers.

Dodgers 4 10 1

Padres     3 7 2





Justin Turner’s RBI single, and Alex Guerrero’s pinch-hit RBI single to center pushed the Dodgers back in front. Guerrero’s single scored Ethier just before A.J. Ellis was tagged out at third base. It was close, but Ethier touched the plate mere seconds before the out was recorded at third.

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So much craziness happened during the last three innings I almost can’t properly explain it. I’ll try my best to paint an adequate picture for you. Clayton Kershaw was rolling. Up until that seventh inning he hadn’t allowed anything. The Dodgers scored once in the third, and another run in the fourth against opposing Cuban right hander (6.1 IP 2R 1ER 6H 1BB 6K) Odrisamer Despaigne.

With two outs in the third, the Dodgers struck first. Joc Pederson was hit by a pitch, Yasiel Puig reached on an error from third baseman Will Middlebrooks, and then Adrian Gonzalez’s ground ball single up the middle scored Joc to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.

The boys in blue added one more in the fourth. Justin Turner singled to left, and two outs later he scored from second base on A.J. Ellis’s bloop single to left that fell in front of Justin Upton. That made the score 2-0 Dodgers.

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Kershaw cruised through most of the game. He ran out of gas in the bottom of the seventh. Not before there was some drama in the top half of the seventh though. The Dodgers loaded the bases in this inning. A.J. singled and was sacrificed to second by Kershaw. Joc and Puig walked, but Gonzo grounded into an inning ending double play. The play at first was close, and Gonzo felt he had beaten the throw, but first base umpire Jim Wolf disagreed, and then ejected Gonzo from the game because he breathed or something, I don’t know.

With Gonzo ejected, Turner had to move to first. Alberto Callaspo takes over at third base. Kershaw starts the frame by whiffing Melvin Upton Jr. Then light hitting Clint Barmes homers over the left field wall to cut the lead to 2-1. Kershaw gets Spangenberg to ground out, but he had already made 117 pitches. Too many walks and foul balls, and Kershaw was unable to finish the inning. Don Mattingly brings the hook and in comes Yimi Garcia. Here’s where things got silly.

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Will Myers who was playing first base tonight, hits a pop-up around the mound that should have been the third out. However Yimi has some kind of brain cramp and couldn’t get out of the way. (Move out of the way Yimi!) Turner tried to make the catch, but bumps into Garcia and drops the ball for an error. Of course as if on cue, catcher Derek Norris immediately homers to put the Padres ahead 3-2. What an agonizing inning!

Kershaw had pitched well, but unfortunately can only come away with a no-decision. Kershaw threw 6.2 innings, allowing one earned run on four hits, walking three, and whiffing eleven. So the Dodger’s offense had to bail them out on this night. Howie Kendrick led off the inning with a slicing double inside the right field line. Former Dodger Matt Kemp’s throw into second was way off, allowing Kendrick to advance to third. Turner singles home Kendrick to tie the score, and the Dodgers erase the brain fart from the inning before.

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Until they have another brain fart. Andre Ethier singles to right, and then with Shawn Kelley on the mound, Turner is picked off of second base on a great throw from Norris. After Jimmy Rollins flies out, A.J. Walks. Guerrero is called off the bench to pinch-hit for Garcia, and he lines a single into center. Ethier hustles around third to score just before A.J. is thrown out at third. A.J. is slow as molasses in January, but the run counts. The Dodgers retake the lead 4-3!

Ironically it was Chris Hatcher who came in from the bullpen to settle things down. He had a good frame, and retired the Padres in the eighth. He struck out Kemp, and then got Solarte to fly out. Middlebrooks singles though, so Mattingly brings in left hander Adam Liberatore to pitch to left handed hitting Yonder Alonso. The Dodgers win the battle, as Alonso flies out to center. 

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  • Move to the bottom of the ninth. Kenley Jansen comes in to close out the game for the Dodgers. He strikes out Barmes, and Will Venable. Myers singles to center, but Kenley whiffs Norris to end the game. The Dodgers win it 4-3!

    Crazy game. Baseball is crazy. After all of that, Yimi gets credited with the win. Kenley picks up his eighth save of the season, and Gonzo is still angry about that play at first base. Well, at least they won. Oh and Darwin Barney was designated for assignment if anybody cares. Newsflash, nobody does.

    The Dodgers improve to 36-25 on the season, and pick up a game on the Giants after they lost to Arizona. The Dodgers are now 2.5 games ahead of the Giants, and six games ahead of the Padres. The series continues Saturday night as Zack Greinke battles Ian Kennedy at 7:10 PM.

    Go Blue!