The Los Angeles Dodgers captured a 5-4 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night, and it was a close one. Arizona scored two in the ninth and had the game-winning run at the plate before Evan Phillips induced a game-ending double play. Whew.
LA extended its lead in the NL West (they can probably thank David Peralta for his incredible catch in the fifth inning that robbed a homer from Carson Kelly). Julio Urías was brilliant (six scoreless innings, four hits, one walk). Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman logged five hits and three RBI. It was an all-around effort with the exception of the bullpen surrendering four runs.
The Dodgers also got by without JD Martinez, who was a late scratch due to a hamstring injury. He was sent back to Los Angeles for more testing. The team is claiming it's not an IL move at the moment and that Martinez is expected to receive an injection to see how the injury responds, but this has been bothering him for weeks.
It's probably best to give the 35-year-old some rest as the offense is humming. They'll need his bat down the stretch and in the postseason as he's been one of the team's most important hitters.
He's currently batting .260/.312/.558 with 48 runs scored, 25 homers and 76 RBI in 88 games. His 128 OPS+ is good for fourth on the team, only behind Betts, Freeman and Will Smith (who has him by one point).
Dodgers News: JD Martinez injury, Juan Soto-Padres contract extension rumors
Martinez has already missed some time due to the hamstring issue, as he was sidelined for the entire series against the Cincinnati Reds at the beginning of the month. The Dodgers lost that three-game set as a result of a weak offensive performance (seven runs in three games) so perhaps they'll look back on that and be more cautious with Martinez this time around (he also sat out the series finale against the Padres on Monday).
As for San Diego, rumors began swirling earlier this week about the team offering Juan Soto a contract extension this offseason (per reporter Hector Gomez). The veracity of the report has yet to be determined, especially since just a few weeks ago there was loud chatter about Soto being dealt at the deadline or in the offseason, but the young slugger recently confirmed his adoration for the team and city.
Is it a coincidence it came shortly after Gomez's report?
However, FanSided's Robert Murray doesn't believe that to be the case, citing it's "unimaginable" for agent Scott Boras to bypass free agency with one of the most talented players of a generation. Boras almost never agrees to extensions with his clients unless it's a special circumstance, so Murray feels there's little reason to believe he'll shift course with a player as influential and renowned as Soto.
To further rebut this from a fan angle, Soto complimented the Dodgers on the team's way out of town after they pummeled the Padres, taking three out of four in San Diego (and trolled them for good measure on social media).
Soto to the Dodgers in free agency after the 2024 season? Can't rule it out if we're playing this game of he said she said.