The Dodgers took a big step towards winning the division last night when Chris Taylor delivered a walk-off win. The win wouldn’t have been possible without a stellar effort by the Dodger bullpen.
The Dodgers won their biggest game of the season last night thanks to a walk-off home run by Chris Taylor. While Taylor came up clutch and ultimately ended the game, the late game heroics wouldn’t have been possible without a stellar effort from the Dodger bullpen.
The Dodger bullpen went to work after Clayton Kershaw pitched seven innings of two run ball. All the bullpen did was pitch three innings, allowing just one hit, no walks, and struck out a whopping six batters. Kenta Maeda, Kenley Jansen, Scott Alexander, and Dylan Floro all combined to cover three innings.
Each reliever came up big in their own way. Kenta Maeda faced the heart of the Rockies’ order and struck out the side. Kenley Jansen had to strand a runner at second base with only one out and given his recent struggles, there was plenty to worry about. Jansen escaped the inning and his cutter looked much sharper with better location. When Jansen did miss, he missed low and inside not leaving hangers over the heart of the plate.
Scott Alexander only faced one batter, but it was a tough one as he got Charlie Blackmon to ground out to start the top of the tenth inning. Dylan Floro came in and kept the Rockies’ heart of the order in check to set up Chris Taylor’s walk-off blast. The win wouldn’t have been possible without the heroic effort of the Dodger bullpen.
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- Although Clayton Kershaw is still viewed as the ace of the Dodgers, Walker Buehler will come into tonight’s start with a dazzling 1.62 ERA and 0.88 WHIP in his last seven starts. Buehler has really taken a giant leap forward this season and is inked in as the Dodgers number two starter. He can help put the Rockies in a big hole today.
- The Dodgers have the third best bullpen ERA in the month of September. Last night they looked solid and Kenta Maeda had his best relief outing this season. If Maeda can revert to last year’s playoff form, the Dodgers will have a very good bullpen in the playoffs.
- Last night’s walk-off home run might be the kind of event CT3 needed to get back on track for the stretch run. Coming into last night’s game, Taylor had hit just .143 in his past seven games with a .214 slugging percentage. Taylor figures to be in the lineup again tonight due a left-hander starting against the Dodgers.
- Dave Roberts continued to make some interesting decisions last night. The most confusing decision was sending Chase Utley to bat in the ninth inning. Utley has not recorded a base hit since his return from the DL on September first. Luckily it didn’t have an effect on the rest of the game.