In case you missed any of the homestand, here are the highs and lows of the past seven games at Chavez Ravine.
Began homestand: 3 game lead.
Ended homestand: 2 1/2 game lead
Opponent: Washington Nationals Three games Results: W – 2 L – 1
Opponent: Cincinnati Reds Four games Results: W – 3 L – 1
The starting pitchers got the Dodgers back on track when Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw stopped the Dodgers’ four game losing streak – the first of the season. The Big Two combined for 14 scoreless innings over their two games.
Kershaw also passed 200+ strike outs for the sixth straight season. Only Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale had done that previously.
The bullpen, which let the Dodgers down on the past road trip, steadied itself in the first two games of the homestand by delivering two shutout innings each from Pedro Baez in the first game and Yimi Garcia in the second game against the Nationals.
Jim Johnson, who was the villain when he had a horrendous outing in Pittsburgh, came in to pitch a scoreless inning during the Nationals blowout over the Dodgers in Game 3. Yay?
The homestand also gave us the return of Justin Turner, who came back from a crazy, life-threatening infection in his leg. Turner received a warm (and appropriately loud) ovation when he came on the field, and he promptly picked up right where he left off. In his first at bat, he came up a few feet short of a home run to deep right field, and settled for a heckuva long single.
Turner would not be done, as he steadily produced on the field and with the bat as the homestand went on.
Speaking of steady production, Adrian Gonzalez, the butter and eggs man, smashed a couple of home runs and picked up 5 RBIs during the homestand. He blasted a no doubt about it, 3-run home run to push the Dodgers to a 5-1 lead in Game 2 against the Reds, and then hit another to left field in Game 3.
Gonzalez now leads the team in four offensive catagories. My (early) vote for the Dodgers’ MVP leads in Home Runs (24), RBI (73), OBP (.366) and hits (124).
In Game 3 against the Reds four Dodgers hit home runs to buoy Brett Anderson on the mound. The Boys in Blue got homers from Justin Turner, Adrian Gonzalez, Yasiel Puig and Enrique (Kike) Hernandez.
In the final game of the homestand Joc Pederson and Zack Greinke hit back-to-back homers to tie, and then lead the game in the fifth inning. Greinke and the bullpen held on to win the game 2-1.
The Dodgers end the homestand with a three game winning streak.
Fortunately, there were not many low points during the homestand. The lone one worth mentioning was the dismal outing by Mat Latos in Game 1 against the Reds. Latos only lasted 4.2 innings and gave up five runs (4 earned). Since joining the Dodgers Latos has pitched 14.2 innings, striking out 8, and giving up 12 runs, for a WHIP of 1.43 and an ERA of 6.75.
Another pleasant surprise was not having anything to write about in Mattingly’s Corner, as he was able to stay out of the way of the team and not make any critical mistakes that led to games getting away. Whew!
Closing things out is the Vin Scully Quote of the Homestand:
“You have Kershaw, you have Greinke, and then you have…hold on to your hats.”
Up next for the Dodgers:
Day off on Monday, followed by a nine-game roadtrip against the Oakland A’s, Houston Astros, and once again, the Cincinnati Reds. Time for a designated hitter!