Just when I thought the Dodgers would drop another game to the Halos in as many nights, the Dodger offense finally woke up in the bottom of the eighth inning. A walk, a force out, a stolen base, then an RBI single from Ethier, and a huge three run home run from Juan Rivera put the Dodgers on top for good. Mike Scioscia made a costly tactical error in that inning, leaving in Jerome Williams to pitch to Ethier and Rivera, leading to the four run eighth inning. However getting there was frustrating. The Dodgers could only muster one run on four hits through seven innings off of Jerome Williams, and the Dodgers made two errors, and three fielding mistakes. A booted grounder from Adam Kennedy, another inning ending grounder Kennedy fed to Gordon popped out of his glove, and nobody was covering first base on another weak grounder towards the mound. Despite the defensive lapses, the Dodgers won. Aaron Harang pitched seven strong innings, and didn’t allow any earned runs, while whiffing five Halos, but left the game losing, and picked up a no-decision. Jamey Wright picked up the win in relief, and Jansen another Save. Andre Ethier picked up his 500 RBI on the day the Dodgers announced his 85 million dollar contract extension. Juan Rivera picked up his 900 career hit, and the Dodgers won game number 40 on the season to improve to 40-23. On Mike Scioscia bobblehead night, his costly mistake leaving in Williams in the bottom of the eighth, probably cost the halos the game. Fine by me! Let’s not forget Ethier’s diving catch in the top of the seventh, that saved a run from scoring. Let’s get to the highlights people!
Top of the first. Mike Trout leads off the game with a walk. Of course he is wild pitched over to second. Naturally, this is the first inning. With Trout at second, Torii Hunter grounds out, Trout is unable to advance. Albert Pujols’s grounder does advance Trout to third. Kendrys Morales grounds out to shortstop, and the Angels fail to score off of Aaron Harang.
Dee Gordon singles leading off the bottom of the first. With A.J. Ellis batting, he steals second, just ahead of the throw. AJ whiffs. Andre Ethier our new 85 million dollar man, grounds out to second, advancing Dee to third. Of course Juan Rivera whiffs on another garbage pitch in the dirt, to end the frame.
Harang whiffs Mark Trumbo to begin the Halos second inning. Maicer Izturis also whiffs. Erick Aybar flies out, and Harang has a nice easy 123 inning. In the bottom of the second, Bobby Abreu grounds out. Adam Kennedy whiffs. Juan Uribe grounds out. I smell another ohfer game.
Top of the third. Catcher Hank Conger pops out. The opposing pitcher Jerome Williams, who I’m not sure has ever gotten a hit in his life, of course doubles into the gap off of Harang. Figures. Anyways, Trout lines out to Ethier. Torri Hunter walks to take the open base. Pujols singles to left, Fortunatly Abreu was playing shallow, and the runners only move up 90 feet to load the bases. Then Adam Kennedy decides to give the Angels a run. After all he was in a giving mood. His bumbling error, when he booted a routine grounder off the bat of Morales, allows Williams to score, to give the Halos a 1-0 lead. Trumbo makes out to end the rally.
Gwynn, Harang, and Gordon all go down in order off of Williams in the home half of the third, with Dee whiffing. Top of the fourth. Harang also retires the Halos in order in the top of the fourth. Izturis, and Aybat pop out, and Conger flies out.
Bottom of the fourth. The Dodgers finally plate a run across in the bottom half of the fourth. AJ, Ethier, and Juan Rivera lead off the inning with consecutive singles. Rivera’s hit to left scores AJ, to tie the game. Bobby’s long fly ball sends Trout back to the wall, but the ball dies in the Chavez Ravine cool night air. Ethier tags up to third. Then the worst player in Baseball, Adam Kennedy grounds right back to the box into an inning ending double play. The Dodgers only get one run. It seems as if Kennedy is trying to lose the game for the Dodgers, single handily.
Jerome Williams leads off the fifth, with a pop up into foul ground in right field. A fan interferes with Ethier’s ability to catch the ball, and Williams gets another swing. Fortunatly, harang retires him. Trout grounds out. Hunter singles, to bring up Pujols. Harang recovers to whiff Pujols on a check swing, and the inning is over. The Dodgers go down in order again in the bottom of the fifth.
Top of the sixth. Morales walks. Trumbo singles. Izturis flies out to Bobby, and the runners hold. Harang whiffs Aybar on a called third strike. More sloppy ass defense does the Dodgers in again. It always centers around Adam Kennedy because well he sucks, but these mistakes I can’t blame him for. Conger hits a routine grounder towards the first base side of the mound. Harang goes to field the ball, but one little problem…NOBODY IS COVERING FIRST BASE! Yeah woops. Really bad mental mistake. Now the bases are loaded, and pitcher Jerome Williams hits a routine grounder to second. Kennedy flips the ball to second to Dee coming across the bag, for what should have been the final out. Nope. The ball bounces right out of Dee’s glove. I can’t explain this play. Why didn’t Kennedy just throw to first? Why if Dee was coming across the bag, did he not make sure he caught the ball? Did he not see Kennedy flipping him the ball? The whole inning just reeked of stupid. Anyways it puts the Halos up 2-1, and with the way the Dodgers are hitting, or not hitting I should say, it doesn’t look good. Harang , battles out of the inning, by whiffing trout.
Bottom of the sixth. Williams is still pitching and Gordon leads off with a walk. Ethier sends Trout back to the wall for a long fly out. Gordon steals second, but Rivera’s broken bat liner inT. Williams glove ends the frame for the Dodgers.
The Angels almost pick up a run, but are robbed in the top of the seventh. Hunter grounds out. Pujols doubles off the low wall in left field. Morales grounds out, and Pujols advances to third. Trumbo is intentionally walked. Izturis hits a sinking liner to right, and Ethier races in to make a diving catch to end the inning. That’s why he gets the big bucks! The Dodgers go down in order again in the bottom of the seventh.
Jamey Wright pitches the top of the eighth, and retires the Halos in order. Harang pitches seven innings, allowing two runs, both unearned, six hits, four walks, and five whiffs. Harang made 118 pitches.
Finally the Dodgers break through in the eighth, in a huge way. A tiring Williams is left on the mound. Gwynn grounds out. Herrera batting for Wright, draws a walk. Gordon’s force out erases Herrera at second, but Dee is way too fast for any chance at a double play for the Halos. With AJ batting Dee steals second base on a very close play. Dee is safe, but Mike Scioscia isn’t happy about it and comes out to argue. No dice Mike. Scioscia leaves Williams in, instead of going to the bullpen. AJ walks. Ethier drives a base hit into right, that scores Dee to tie the game! Williams is still left in. Juan Rivera bombs one into the left field pavilion, and the Dodgers take the lead 5-2! The Angels hook Williams and bring in Jordan Walden to get the last out. Abreu reaches on an error but is thrown out trying to steal, on what looked like a busted hit and run play. The damage is done though, as the Dodger’s offense finally wakes up.
Top of the ninth. Enter Kenley Jansen. Trout and Hunter both whiff, and Pujols flies out to Gwynn, and the Dodgers win 5-2! Ballgame! The Dodgers maintain their 4.5 game lead the NL west.
Tomorrow the Dodgers will go for the series win in the rubber game at 7PM. The Dodgers will face another tough opponent in C.J. Wilson. The Dodgers will counter with rookie Nathan Eovaldi. Nothing makes me more happy than beating the stupid Angels. (Except beating the Giants of course) I hate them so. Let’s beat those Halos again! Go Blue.