It may be cinco de mayo, but there is no reason for celebration in Dodger land. The Dodgers despite a late rally, fell short once again, losing to the Giants 4-3, and getting swept by the Giants on national television. They have lost four in a row, and now must come home and figure out somehow how to stop sucking so terribly.
Adrian Gonzalez was once again scratched from the starting lineup with a sore neck. Gonzo will receive an MRI tomorrow, and sat out his third game in a row. Although he did come off the bench and get a big two-run pinch-hit single in the eighth inning.
Still that didn’t matter. I don’t think anything could help the Dodgers win at this point. They just suck. It doesn’t matter who they play or where, or who is on the mound. Tonight the Dodgers gave the ball to Hyun-jin Ryu to try and stop them from being swept. Ryu couldn’t do it as he was clearly outmatched by Matt Cain. Ryu allowed four runs on eight hits through six frames, and came out losing 4-0.
Cain pitched into the eighth inning and left with a 4-0 lead. He only allowed five hits through 7.1 effective innings. He whiffed four and made 109 pitches.
The Giants scored a run in the bottom of the first, one in the third and two in the bottom of the fifth. All four of their runs were driven in by Hunter Pence. His RBI force out scored the first run in the bottom of the first, and then his two doubles plated three additional runs, which turned out to be just enough for them to hold off a late Dodger rally.
Of course the Dodgers mounted a failed rally which was too little too late. The three runs scored all in the eighth inning. Gonzalez had the pinch-hit two-run single, and then Dee Gordon plated a run by legging out an infield chopper.
The game was nationally televised on ESPN. Which of course meant more of the ESPN announcers gushing over how good the Giants are. “Oh they just win. They’re gritty gamers. They just know how to win.” Etc..etc..etc.. Hey where’s my vomit bucket??
The nationally televised audience got a first hand look at how bad the Dodgers are. Their weaknesses were glaring and exposed for all the world to see. The Dodgers were not only swept by their hated rivals, but they are now 13-17 and just a half game out of last place. BY the end of the week, they should be firmly entrenched in the division basement. The Dodgers are also 5-13 against the NL West. The Dodger free fall goes on as the team tries to figure out why they are unable to win Baseball games.
The Dodgers come out swinging against Matt Cain in the top of the first. After a Carl Crawford grounder, and a Nick Punto fly out, Matt Kemp strokes a base hit landing just inside the left field line and bouncing over the fence for a ground-rule double. Andre Ethier’s deep fly sends Hunter Pence all the way to the wall but he makes the catch, which ends the inning.
The Giants scored a run in the bottom of the first. They used a bunch of infield hits, choppers, and bloops, and some truly atrocious Dodger defense. Andres Torres singles to left. Marco Scutaro reaches on an infield single to short. Gordon’s throw is offline and late. Pablo Sandoval’s blooper into center loads up the bases. Buster Posey grounds to third, and reaches when Luis Cruz throws home to record a force out. Pence follows with another ground force out that scores Scutaro. The Giants lead 1-0. Peguero’s fly out ends the inning.
The Dodgers don’t score in the top of the second. Juan uribe nearly takes matt Cain’s head off with a line drive single up the middle. Cain uncorks a wild pitch and Uribe goes to second. Cruz with a signature pop-out and Gordon lines out and the Dodgers come up empty. Ryu sets the Giants down in order in the bottom of the second. Although they continued to swing early in the counts. Ryu retires Quiroz on a fly ball, Crawford on a grounder, and then whiffs Cain.
The top of the third starts with Ryu whiffing. Crawford singles, and steals second. Of course, Punto is called out on strikes, and after kemp walks, Ethier flies out to right. The Giants tack another run with a Scuataro single, a walk to Buster Posey, and a line drive RBI double to left by Hunter Pence. It’s 2-0 Giants after three.
Both pitchers exchange scoreless frames in the fourth, and then the Dodgers threaten in the top of the fifth. Gordon walks. Ryu is unable to sacrifice him over to second. So Gordon steals it. Crawford’s line out and a ground-out from Punto ends the rally, with the Dodgers not scoring again.
In the bottom of the fifth Ryu picks off Torres after he singles and retires Scutaro on a fly out to left, but walks Sandoval and allows a single to Posey. Pence’s double off the brick wall in right scores both Sandoval and Posey extending the Giant’s lead to 4-0.
The Dodgers hit for Ryu while they are ohfering away the top of the seventh. Ryu had only made 85 pitches so I am not sure why he was taken out when he could have pitched another inning or two. Ryu goes six frames allows four runs on eight hits, and whiffs two. Matt Guerrier takes over in the bottom of the seventh. Joy. Torres reaches on an infield single. Scutaro Sandoval, and Posey all ground out. The score remains at 4-0.
Cain pitches into the top of the eighth before he is removed. Kemp is issued a one-out walk, and then the Giants go to their bullpen. Left hander Javier Lopez is brought in to pitch to Ethier. He whiffs Ethier for the second out. But AJ singles to give us a little bit of hope. George Kontos the right hander is called in to face Uribe. The portly infielder draws another walk, and loads the bases. The Giants make another pitching change, this time bringing in lefty Jeremy Affeldt. Adrian Gonzalez is called up off the bench despite his sore neck and delivers with a pinch-hit single up the middle to score two. That cuts the SF lead in half at 4-2. Gordon follows with a ground ball chopper over Affeldt’s head. Uribe scores the third run and the score is 4-3 Giants. San Francisco goes to the bullpen again and brings in Jean Machi. Hairston in a pinch-hit role, grounds out ending the rally. But the Dodgers do close the gap to only a run with an inning left to play.
Kenley Jansen shows up to pitch the bottom of the eighth for the Dodgers. He just whiffs the side and keeps the score at 4-3. Move to the top of the ninth. Giant’s closer Sergio Romo on to close out the game. Romo easily retires Crawford, Punto, and Kemp on three straight fly balls, and that ends it. The Giants sweep the Dodgers.
I have nothing more to say tonight. Either whole sale changes need to be made, or the Dodgers will keep going nowhere. This entire season is a disaster.
Join us tomorrow as we continue to document the Dodger train wreck of 2013. We’re right here with you guys, chronicling the Dodgers journey into last place.
The Dodgers will fly back home to begin a nine game homestand, starting tomorrow evening. They’ll start out with a three game series against Arizona. Chris Capuano will make his first real start of the season coming off of his recent calf injury. Hopefully it goes better than his last outing. The snakes will counter with Trevor Cahill.