Dodgers 4 6 0
White Sox 3 13 1
WP- Belisario (1-0)
LP- Stults (1-1)
The Dodgers won their twelfth Spring game this afternoon thanks to excellent bullpen pitching and an unexpected bottom of the ninth one-out hit by Jerry Sands. I was just discussing Sands’ disappointing showing this Spring, and I’m still not one to advocate him making the team after this one single in today’s game versus the White Sox. Sands is still only hitting .158 with 6 hits (including one extra base hit) in 38 at bats. With Rivera, Gwynn, Kemp, Ethier, and even Hairston covering the outfield, it would only seem sensible to give Justin Sellers or Josh Fields that last coveted spot on the 25-man roster.
The White Sox managed 13 hits against the Dodgers, and 11 of those were allowed by Chad Billingsley. Bills had another worrisome outing. His Jekyll and Hyde tendencies must be ironed out before the season starts otherwise he’s going to be very hot and cold. Chad pitched 5.2 innings, allowing 11 hits, 3 runs, 2 walks, and 5 strikeouts. His ERA sits just below five for the Spring.
Billingsley started out shaky in the first inning when he allowed a leadoff single to Alejandro De Aza, but Matt Treanor‘s bullet to Hairston who was playing at second today replacing an ill Mark Ellis, erases De Aza at second while attempting to steal. In the second inning Billingsley allows another four singles and two runs come in.
The Dodgers are still unable to score come the third inning, but Chicago adds another notch to the board in the top half. Bills allows another single to Paul Konerko and then walks Adam Dunn. Alexi Ramirez singles to load up the bases. Dayan Viciedo-yes you guessed it-singles. Paul Konerko scores, 3-0 Chicago.
Billingsley settles down a bit, and he pitches a scoreless fifth. The Dodgers finally get on the board in the bottom of the fifth when Juan Rivera singles, and Andre Ethier doubles Juan home. My favorite Dodger is now hitting .412 this Spring with 14 hits including 12 extra base hits. Sands and Uribe both pathetically ground out before Treanor’s single. Chad Billingsley whiffs to end the inning.
The top of the sixth inning starts off sketchy, as Billingsley continues the single fest. Viciedo and Beckham hit back-to-back singles. While Brent Lillibridge is striking out at the plate, Matt Treanor throws out Beckham at second attempting to steal. Way to go Treanor! We haven’t seen a catcher throw out two base runners in one game in quite a long time. I actually cannot remember the last time, so if you do please comment below. Bills is finally hooked, and Jamey Wright is brought in to replace him. Wright strikes out Brent Morel swinging to end the 6th.
“I think Bills did a good job, taking it upon himself to start throwing inside with the fastballs,” said catcher Matt Treanor.
The damage off the 13 Chicago hits could have definitely been worse than it was. Like I was mentioning to Scott during the game, it seems to me Billingsley is over thinking too much and not trusting his fastball.
The Dodgers tie it up in the bottom of the sixth when Dee Gordon legs out a bunt single, steals second, and then reaches third base on a throwing error by catcher Tyler Flowers. I love how Gordon generates base path movement. He’s always looking to see how he can advance. Dee then scores on a sac fly by Hairston.
Javy Guerra comes in to pitch the seventh inning, and only allows a single to Konerko. The Dodgers go down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 7th.
John Danks pitched well for the White Sox. He went 7 innings, allowing 5 hits, 3 runs, no walks, and 4 strikeouts.
Scott Elbert replaced Guerra to pitch the eighth. And oh boy Elbert looks real good. He strikes out the side with some southpaw magic.
Belisario pitches the top of the ninth, and he allows a two-out single to Jordan Danks. Josh Bard, who is now catching, throws out Danks stealing second. Wow that’s three base runners caught stealing by Dodger catchers. I never thought I’d see the day.
The bottom of the ninth brings in old friend Eric Stults to pitch for the White Sox. Remember him? Josh Fields draws a walk, and Elian Herrera comes in to pinch-run for Fields. Herrera advances to second base on a ground ball by Corey Sullivan. Matt Angle walks, and then Jerry Sands comes up to bat and singles in the winning run!
The Dodgers play their roommates, the White Sox, one more time on Thursday before the regular season starts. Tomorrow the Dodgers play a split squad game against the Padres at 1:05 pm. Ted Lilly is out with a rusty neck, so tomorrow’s game will be entirely pitched by relievers.