As the great Vin Scully put it after Matt Kemp sent an 0-2 pitch into the left-center field seats, “Sooner or later the word’s going to get around the league that Matt Kemp might beat you.” For the second time this week the opposition chose to pitch to Kemp with first base open and the game on the line, and for the second time he ended the game in dramatic fashion.
Clayton Kershaw took a 2-1 lead into the top of the ninth and ran into some trouble. Manager Don Mattingly gave Kershaw the chance to finish what he started and with the Braves down to their final strike, former Dodger, David Ross hit a 2 run single to give the Braves the lead.
Braves rookie closer Craig Kimbrel , who hadn’t pitched since Saturday, began the bottom of the 9th by walking Jamey Carroll on 4 straight pitches. After Aaron Miles was unable to sacrifice Carroll to second, Dodger rookie Jerry Sands had the chance to be the hero. He struck out but Carroll was able to advance to second base on a wild pitch by Kimbrel. Casey Blake, who hit his first homer of the season to give the Dodgers the lead in the 7th, tied the game on a sharp single to left that scored Carroll.
Matt Guerrier pitched a scoreless 11th and 12th inning, and with one out in the bottom of the 12th Andre Ethier doubled sending Kemp to the plate with 1 out and first base open. Again, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez, much like Cardinals skipper Tony LaRussa, chose to pitch to Kemp, and just like Sunday Kemp made him pay by sending an 0-2 slider into the stands. Game over and the Dodgers, who have now won 4 of their last 5 games, took the series 3 games to 1.
The Dodgers now travel to Chicago to take on the Cubs. Enjoy the video of Kemp sending Dodger fans home happy, I found this on YouTube. Thank you to the Dodgers for hosting Lasorda’s Lair the past 2 days, and thank you to Matt Kemp for sending this Dodger fan back to Utah very happy.