Baseball is the worst and the Dodgers are trying to kill us all.
This game man. It was so beautiful and fun and enjoyable through seven innings, and then just horrendous and unwatchable. Sorta like The Office.
The good: Ross Stripling SHOVED. Lord was he good. Bumpus Jones‘ name was floating around on twitter. Jones was the last pitcher to throw a no-hitter in his major league debut. That happened in October 1892. Not dyslexia there, literally the last time it happened was in the 1800s. Stripling brought Jones’ name up because he had a no-hitter going through seven 1/3 innings. He had walked four, including one in the seventh.
Stripling was making his major league debut. His debut probably would have come in 2014, but he had Tommy John surgery and came back last June. He won the fifth starter spot after a number of injuries to the rotation. He made his debut and I was hoping for six innings and three runs. He gave me seven and no hits, which was nice. He was at 100 pitches, which manager Dave Roberts claimed was going to be his pitch limit. True to his word, Roberts pulled Stripling. Chris Hatcher came in and got squeezed horribly, but threw an absolute meatball to Trevor Brown, who hit the ball into the left field bleachers. Hatcher was frustrated by a very inconsistent strike zone, but that pitch was pretty terrible and it single-handedly soured a phenomenal outing by Stripling.
The takes have been quite hot, as there has been much debate about taking out Stripling. Roberts chose to, and in my opinion it was 100 percent the right call and there’s really nothing anyone can say that will change my mind. He’s making his first start and was losing his control at 100 pitches. In theory, two fresh relief pitchers should be better than one rookie starter. Hatcher made one terrible pitch, and hindsight makes it look like a much worse decision. There’s no guarantee that leaving Stripling in would have led to an injury or whatever, but if Hatcher makes one pitch no one cares about him getting pulled. It’s literally only game five of the season, why risk anything this early on? Especially for a team that has seen five pitchers go down with injuries already.
As deflating and infuriating as it was, this is still one loss. A no-hitter would have been cool, but I wanted the win and that didn’t happen. The Dodgers felt that they had a better shot at that win with a reliever on the hill instead of a rookie starter 100 pitches into the game. That’s a good feeling, it didn’t work out like that. Them’s the breaks.
On the bright side, Clayton Kershaw throws tomorrow (weather permitting). Rain is in the forecast, but if it goes away we get Kershaw against Madison Bumgarner. And it will be on FS1, not blacked out in LA.