Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Indians 10, Dodgers 3
By Mark Saxon
LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Dodgers lost their wackiest game of the season, making for a short stay atop the NL West: one day.
And a wild streak remains intact: Despite their generally hot play, the Dodgers still haven't won four games in a row this season. They're 0-for-7 after winning the first three.
The Cleveland Indians beat L.A. 10-3 Tuesday night, thanks in part to a fourth-inning triple play that went, improbably, 7-2-4, and prompted two replay reviews.
Michael Brantley caught Adrian Gonzalez's shallow fly ball in left and threw out Dee Gordon at the plate. After Yasiel Puig took off for second amid the confusion, catcher Yan Gomes gunned him out. Both plays were challenged, but the upshot was the first triple play at Dodger Stadium in more than two years.
The loss, combined with the San Francisco Giants' 5-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals, put the Dodgers back in second place, a half-game out. (The Dodgers had grabbed sole possession of first place for the first time since April the night before.)
How it happened: It was a promising game for the Dodgers' offense in that it produced action, including 10 hits. But it was a miserable game for clutch hitting. In addition to the triple play, the Dodgers wasted a second-and-third, nobody-out situation in the second inning and a bases-loaded, nobody-out chance in the fifth. Pinch hitters Hanley Ramirez and Clint Robinson both struck out in the fifth.
Beckett, who according to Dodgers manager Don Mattingly has been dealing with general soreness, had a come-down-to-earth start, giving up five runs and six hits in five innings.
Hits: Gordon had a nice night at the plate, bolstering his All-Star chances. But he may have taken an unnecessary risk in the sixth inning. After reaching base on his third hit of the night -- a chopper to the third baseman -- Gordon was thrown out trying to steal with the Dodgers trailing by four runs in the sixth inning. In Gordon's first 37 attempted steals, he was caught three times. In his last 12 tries, he has been caught six times.
Misses: Matt Kemp heard some boos after his third strikeout of the night. Seemed a bit harsh. Kemp may have had a rough night at the plate -- and he also looked a bit lost hauling in Brantley's fly ball in the third inning -- but he was batting .354 with a 1.015 OPS in his previous 23 games.
Stat of the game: Since season’s start of 2010, the Dodgers were 35-2 when an opposing starter didn't last longer than three innings. Now they are 35-3 in such situations. The Dodgers managed seven hits off Justin Masterson and Indians manager Terry Francona relieved him of the ball with nobody out in the fourth inning. Then came the triple play, and things got worse from there.
Up next: The Dodgers can still win their fifth straight series if they can beat the Indians on Wednesday afternoon. Hyun-Jin Ryu (9-4, 3.12 ERA) will oppose former UCLA pitcher Trevor Bauer (2-4, 4.39) at 12:10 PT.