- Adam Rubin, ESPN Staff Writer
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LOS ANGELES -- Daniel Murphy was hoping for a chance to atone in the seventh, a half-inning after narrowly failing to convert a pair of fielding plays in what became a three-run frame for the Dodgers.
Murphy, batting with the bases loaded and two outs against left-hander Paco Rodriguez, ended up lining out on a hard-hit ball to right fielder Yasiel Puig and the Mets went on to lose to Los Angeles, 4-2, in Monday's series opener.
New York Mets
"Paco is tough on lefties. I got a good pitch to hit and put a good swing on it," Murphy said. "That's all you can do right there -- just try centering it. I did. Puig made a great play on it. ... The whole inning I was hoping to get an AB right there after having a tough defensive go of it when they got a three-spot. So I really wanted to hit. You center it, that's all you can do. I can't get upset about not getting a hit. I hit the ball hard. I had a good at-bat. I was happy about it, other than the result. That's baseball."
As for the consecutive fielding plays to open the bottom of the sixth, Murphy felt badly for Jenrry Mejia. Murphy first could not convert a play to his right on a grounder by Carl Crawford. He then had a soft liner from Mark Ellis glance off his glove and drop into shallow right field. Both of those runners ended up scoring.
"The one on Crawford, I kind of felt in-between on it," Murphy said. "I wasn't sure if I could get it clean on the straight backhand and then get it in the air. And then once I left my feet, it just hit off my glove.
"And the other one, with Ellis, it hit off the tip of my glove. They got the breaks tonight. And we didn't."
Murphy described the inning as frustrating.
The third run of the inning, which gave L.A. a 3-2 lead, scored on Puig's sac fly, which plated Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez was only at third base because Juan Lagares errantly threw to Wilmer Flores at third trying to return a ball to the infield.
Terry Collins noted Mejia should have been backing up third base on that play, which would have prevented Gonzalez from advancing to the base.
"It was very frustrating at the time, because those are two plays I felt I could make personally," Murphy said about his near-misses. "And to not make them, and Mejia is throwing the ball so well, and then all of a sudden you look up and there's three, for me it left a bad taste in my mouth."
Said Collins: "The one thing we know about this infield, it's really fast. It's been fast forever. And the other ball he made a good effort at it. He just didn't catch it. The next thing you know we're in big trouble."
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