Dodgers bounce back after a heartbreaking loss last night and take the series over their division rivals, the San Francisco Giants.
Kenta Maeda shined yet again in his third start for the Dodgers tonight. Tonight he pitched into the seventh inning for the first time in his MLB career. His first two starts, Maeda only made it to the sixth inning. Things got off to a rough start for Maeda in the first when he allowed two walks and threw 13 balls in comparison to just 11 strikes. He combined for a 24 pitch inning, which is not like Maeda. After the first inning, Maeda settled down a lot. He missed location on one pitch to Joe Panik in the third inning and Panik crushed it and got the Giants on the board with a solo home run.
Maeda made one of the game’s best plays in the top of the seventh when Jeff Samardzija laid down a bad bunt. Maeda fielded the ball, threw to Corey Seager who was covering second, then Seager threw it to Chase Utley who was covering first and all of a sudden there were two outs. The whole sequence was a beautiful double play. Tonight Maeda struckout seven, which is a new career high for him. Sadly his ERA went up to 0.47 from 0.00, but really how can you complain about that? Considering Maeda just came to America, in his first three starts he has only given up one run and it was off one bad pitch to Panik. He is definitely the pitcher the Dodgers hoped they would be getting.
Samardzija pitched great as well. He was scoreless through the fifth. Yasmani Grandal led off the inning with a walk and Joc Pederson came up a few batters later. Pederson has been struggling at the plate lately, but he took that anger out on a fastball. Pederson drove that fastball into the pavilion and the Dodgers gained the lead, 2-1.
The Dodgers would add another insurance run in the seventh. Yasiel Puig led off the inning with a single and with some aggressive base running, he also stole second. Puig then scored from second when Grandal hit an infield single. Puig’s aggressiveness on the base challenged the Giants. The throw was sent to the plate, but wild and Buster Posey could not tag him. Puig was safe and the Dodgers now led by two.
The bullpen also extended their scoreless innings streak to 14 when Chris Hatcher entered the game in the eighth and shut down the Giants. Off to the ninth and Kenley Jansen entered the ballgame. Jansen allowed a base hit, but did not allow the Giants to capitalize on it.
A great game by the Dodgers all together. Hopefully Pederson’s timely home run gives him some more confidence at the plate going forward. Let’s keep taking those frustrations out on fastballs and send them into the seats.
The Dodgers hit the road tomorrow and have an off day. They will be back in action on Tuesday at 4:10PM as they face the Atlanta Braves.