Dodgers 1 10 2
Padres 2 5 1
WP- Volquez (11-11)
LP- Beckett (6-14)
S- Street (23)
Unfortunately the Dodgers were stagnate at the plate and messy on the base paths tonight which led to their game one loss versus the Padres at Petco Park. Josh Beckett and Ronald Belisario both also had costly throwing errors to first base. Once again, all these blunders weren’t pretty, but the real ugly part was the total lack of clutch hitting. The Dodgers were 2-for-9 with runners in scoring position tonight. They mounted a small rally in the ninth inning against Huston Street after a RBI double from A.J. Ellis allowed the Dodgers to score their lone run. The Cardinals had already beaten the Astros earlier in the evening, so the Dodgers had to win this game to stay alive in the Wild Card race. It was not to be. Edinson Volquez pitched seven shutout innings, and the Dodgers were edged out by a run.
The Dodgers can only draw a one-out walk by Andre Ethier in the top of the first inning. Amidst a mix of boos and cheers, former Padre Adrian Gonzalez flies out in his first at bat upon returning to Petco Park.
The Dodgers waste a perfect opportunity to score in the second inning after a potential run is erased at the plate. Shane Victorino, who is back in the lineup after missing some games with a sore wrist, singles with one out. With Luis Cruz at the plate, the Flyin’ Hawaiian steals second (his 38th stolen base on the season). Cochito singles to left field, and Victorino tries to test Chris Denorfia‘s arm. He is gunned down at the plate as catcher Yasmani Grandal easily tags him out. A.J. Ellis flies out to end the frame as the Dodgers come up empty.
In the bottom of the second, Victorino makes a nice diving rolling catch to rob Grandal of a base hit. Yonder Alonso then hits a bullet line drive right into Josh Beckett’s glove. Denorfia grounds out to second.
Ethier singles with two outs in the top of the third, but Matt Kemp strikes out to end the inning. With that at bat, Matt Kemp ‘s batting average dips below .300 to .299.
Beckett strikes out Will Venable to begin the bottom half of the third inning. Cameron Maybin hits a double down the right field line which just barely gets over Adrian Gonzalez’s glove. Volquez strikes out. Cabrera swings on ball four as he whiffs to end the inning, and the game remains scoreless.
The Dodgers go down in order in the fourth.
Forsythe opens up the bottom half of the fourth with a walk. Chase Headley singles to right on a 3-2 count, and Beckett is in trouble. San Diego has runners at first and third with nobody out. Forsythe scores on a little dribbler to first by Grandal as the Padres take a 1-0 lead. Alonso makes the second out on a hard ground ball to first. Denorfia grounds to third to end the inning, and the Padres strand Headley at third.
Luis Cruz singles to lead-off the fifth as he picks up his second hit of the night. A.J. Ellis hits into a force play, and he ends up at second base after Logan Forsythe throws the ball Dee style over the head of the first baseman for an error. The Dodgers can’t muster any offense whatsoever as Beckett and Mark Ellis make out to end the inning.
Josh Beckett continues to struggle as he gives Venable a free pass to begin the bottom of the fifth inning. Maybin strikes out swinging. Volquez strikes out trying to bunt. Venable steals second with Cabrera in the batter’s box. Another San Diego run is plated after Cabrera’s bunt single and a throwing error by Beckett allows Venable to score. It’s now 2-0 Padres.
Volquez strikes out Ethier to start the sixth inning. Volquez, who can get wild at times, hits Matt Kemp with a pitch. Gonzalez singles to center. Hanley Ramirez hits a soft grounder to third, and Headley can’t get Hanley in time who is awarded a base hit. Headley throws to Cabrera who does hang out Matt Kemp to dry as he’s tagged out rounding third. Gonzalez advances to third on the play. Victorino draws a walk to load the bases up with two outs. Luis Cruz grounds into a force, and the Dodgers leave the bases loaded and our hearts empty.
Beckett once again begins the inning on a shaky note as Headley singles to lead things off for San Diego in the bottom of the sixth. Grandal lines out, but Alonso singles. Denorfia strikes out, and that will be all for Josh Beckett tonight. Paco Rodriguez will come in to pitch to Will Venable. Paco gets his man as Venable flies out to left field.
Josh Beckett pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing 2 runs on 5 hits, 2 walks, and 7 strikeouts on 103 pitches.
A.J. grounds out softly in the seventh. Bobby Abreu hits Volquez right in the derriere with a line drive, but is thrown out on the play. Mark Ellis grounds out as well as the Dodgers go down meekly 1-2-3.
Ronald Belisario is in to pitch the bottom half of the seventh for the Dodgers. Maybin reaches safely on yet another throwing error. Belisario lobs a low throw to Gonzalez which goes right through the first baseman’s legs. Alexi Amarista, pinch-hitting for Volquez, flies out to left. Belisario walks Cabrera. Forsythe grounds into a double play. Shane Victorino and Mark Ellis have some words for Cabrera who put his hands up and grabbed at Mark Ellis’s crotch area in his slide into second to try to break up the double play. Victorino is notorious for flapping his mouth, but this time he’s defending his teammate who was taken out and severely injured on a takeout slide earlier in the season. Both benches clear, but the brouhaha is quickly dissolved.
Edinson Volquez pitched 7 shutout innings, allowing 6 hits, 2 walks, and 4 strikeouts on 98 pitches.
Joe Thatcher comes into pitch the eighth for the Friars to face Ethier. Ethier strikes out again on a tough slider from the lefty. Dale Thayer comes in from the Pads bullpen next. Kemp strikes out for the second time. Gonzalez and Ramirez hit back-to-back singles with two outs. Victorino flies out, and the two base runners are stranded of course.
Kenley Jansen comes out of the Dodgers bullpen for the bottom of the ninth inning, and he pitches a perfect 1-2-3 inning.
Huston Street comes in to try to shut the door on the Dodgers in the top of the ninth. Luis Cruz comes up with his third hit of the night, a single to left field. A.J. Ellis comes up big, and he doubles to the gap. Luis Cruz scores! The San Diego lead is cut in half, 2-1. Dee Gordon comes into pinch-run for A.J. Nick Punto is asked to sacrifice Gordon over. Punto does his job, and the tying run is now at third. Mark Ellis draws a walk. Ethier strikes out for the third time on a changeup from Street for the second out. It’s up to Matt Kemp now. Kemp flies out to end the inning and strand the runners. They stranded 11 runners tonight.
The Dodgers fall to 79-75, and their elimination number is now down to four. Any combination of Cardinal wins or Dodger losses that equal four will also equal the finality of this Dodgers season.