Once upon a time (just, like, a week or so ago), the Los Angeles Dodgers were 13-2, cementing their juggernaut status in the National League.
Since then, though, they’ve been stuck with the hyper-competitive San Diego Padres in a four-game series they’d rather forget, and have seemingly been forced to take part in an endless game of “How Many Key Pieces Can You Lose to Injury?”
In the past several weeks alone, LA has said temporary (or permanent!) goodbyes to Corey Knebel, Cody Bellinger, Mookie Betts, Zach McKinstry, Tony Gonsolin and David Price — as well as Gavin Lux, who’s already back from the IL.
One of the very few constants? Justin Turner, as always.
Naturally, Turner took the team’s entire conundrum on his shoulders on Wednesday afternoon at Dodger Stadium, torpedoing a baseball into the seats deep in left off Sonny Gray.
Suddenly, Los Angeles had a multi-run lead to work with, one they refused to relinquish.
Dodgers star Justin Turner helped Los Angeles break a cold snap Wednesday.
All in a day’s work for JT. 16-9 isn’t so bad. Now, we build from here, thanks to veteran leaders like this guy.
The 2-0 lead Turner grabbed for his Dodgers team lasted all the way to the eighth inning, thanks to another masterful Clayton Kershaw outing.
Of course…that wasn’t the final score.
Emboldened in part by the efforts of Turner and Kershaw, the Dodgers’ vaunted offense tagged Reds reliever and Sterling Cooper art director Sal Romano for six earned runs in a rough .2 of an inning, pushing the margin to eight by the end of this much-needed victory.
Sometimes, when an offense is hurting, a team seems to be out of sync, and every little lead is blown, it helps to turn to a pair of stoppers.
For the Dodgers Wednesday, it was Kershaw on the mound, who was vintage, and Turner at the plate who begged his teammates to get on his back until they felt loose enough to rip themselves in the eighth.
It took a while to get there, but this quickly became true Dodgers Baseball once the stone rolled down the mountain in the eighth.