Dodgers 5 10 1
Cardinals 3 7 1
WP- Rodriguez (1-2)
LP- Maness (3-1)
S- League (10)
HR- Gonzalez (5)
The Dodgers hoped they could squeak out a win during these three tough games against the first place St. Louis Cardinals. Chris Capuano and the Dodgers got hammered in a 7-0 shutout on Friday night, and it is clearly evident that the Cardinals have a powerful team assembled. Lance Lynn was very effective in shutting down the Dodgers who only managed three hits in the game. Ted Lilly will go to the mound for the first time after being disabled with a rib cage strain.
Lilly was very effective, and he only allowed two runs on two hits. Yet Ronald Belisario ended up costing Lilly the win, and Paco Rodriguez ended up collecting his first victory of his young career after pitching one inning in relief. Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier both went hitless, but the real stars of the game were Adrian Gonzalez and Nick Punto. Gonzalez ripped three hits, including his fifth homerun on the season, and picked up 3 RBIs and 2 walks as well. Nick Punto was on point with the glove and in the batter’s box. Punto had 3 hits and brought in 2 runs while also making an important play which essentially saved the game by making a diving stop at third which made up for his error in the first inning.
Ted Lilly promptly serves up a lead-off single right up the middle to Matt Carpenter to open up the first inning. Carlos Beltran pops up to third baseman Nick Punto for the first out. Andre Ethier makes a nice catch in right field on a well hit ball by Matt Holliday. Then awful defense commences with an error on Punto as he bobbles a routine grounder at third by Allen Craig. Yadier Molina hits a fly ball to left field where Scott Van Slyke slams down on the ground while attempting to dive for the ball. The double allows Matt Carpenter to score and gives the Cards an early 1-0 lead. Lilly plunks David Freese, and the bases are loaded. The inning finally ends after Jon Jay grounds out to second.
John Gast, the lefty, goes to the mound for the Red Birds in the home half of the first. Nick Punto, who is batting .323 going into the game, draws a lead-off walk. Mark Ellis lines out sharply to Holliday in left. Adrian Gonzalez crushes a double off the center field wall, and Nick Punto brings in the tying run on a long slide! Matt Kemp grounds out to third, and Andre Ethier grounds out to second to end the frame.
Lilly pitches a nice 1-2-3 inning in the second.
Scott Van Slyke draws a walk to begin the bottom of the second. Suddenly there is a delay, and it looks like John Gast is injured. We learn that he had left shoulder tightness. The Cards have to bring in Joe Kelly, a righty, out of the pen. Kelly strikes out A.J. Ellis, Dee Gordon, and Ted Lilly consecutively as the Dodgers waste the lead-off walk.
John Gast only lasted 1 inning and allowed 1 run on 1 hit with no strikeouts and 2 walks on 25 pitches.
Dee Gordon seemed to hurt his finger on a groundout by Holliday, and there is a delay as the trainers take a look. He’s okay to stay in the game. Lilly strikes out
Craig for a 1-2-3 inning.
Nick Punto leads off the bottom of the third with a double to right center. Mark Ellis is hit by a pitch, and the Dodgers are in business with runners at first and second with nobody out. Adrian Gonzalez comes up big again with a single up the middle! Punto scores, and the Dodgers take a 2-1 lead. Matt Kemp strikes out swinging. Ethier pops out. Van Slyke flies out to deep center to end the inning.
Ted Lilly is cruising now, and he retires the Cards in order in the top of the fourth.
Dee Gordon’s single is book cased between a whiff by A.J. Ellis and one from Ted Lilly who can’t get the bunt down. Nick Punto picks up his second hit of the game, a single. Gordon advances to third. Craig makes a good catch while in foul territory to retire Mark Ellis, and the Dodgers fail to score.
Ted Lilly pitches another scoreless 1-2-3 inning in the top of the fifth.
Adrian Gonzalez continues to carry this team as he proceeds to wallop a solo homerun against Kelly in the bottom of the fifth! It’s now 3-1 Dodgers. Matt Kemp draws a walk, and Mike Matheny has seen enough. They’ll go to the pen and bring in Carlos Martinez. Ethier pops out, and Van Slyke and A.J. Ellis both strike out. That’s A.J.’s third strikeout of the game.
In the sixth, Lilly retires Beltran but allows a walk to Holliday. Don Mattingly will pull Lilly out of the game after only 79 pitches. He brings in Ronald Belisario out of the pen. Belisario gets a force out on a comebacker from Craig. Molina follows with a single. David Freese predictably doubles past Crawford who is now in the game on a double switch. It is deflected off CC’s glove. Craig scores. They intentionally walk Jon Jay to load the bases up with two outs. Pete Kozma‘s infield single scores the tying run as Molina scores. The bullpen can blow the lead in the blink of an eye. All of Lilly’s great pitching is flushed down the toilet. Mattingly goes to the pen again, and he’ll bring in lefty Paco Rodriguez to face pinch-hitter Matt Adams with the bases loaded. Paco induces a pop out from Adams to end the inning, but it’s now a new game.
Ted Lilly pitched 5 1/3 innings, allowing 2 runs on 2 hits with 3 strikeouts and 1 walk on 79 pitches.
Seth Maness, a right-hander, will pitch the bottom of the sixth for the Dodgers. Gordon flies out to right. Matt Carpenter bobbles a tailor made ground out, and Crawford reaches safely on the fielding error. Punto strikes out. Mark Ellis comes up big and scorches a double down the left field line! Crawford scores to give the Dodgers a 4-3 lead. The Cards smartly intentionally walk Gonzo who is just a triple away from the cycle. Matt Kemp strikes out again to end the inning.
Paco is still in for the top of the seventh. Carpenter flies out to left. Adrian Gonzalez makes a fantastic diving stop on a grounder hit by Beltran which he feeds to Paco at first to get him just in time. Mattingly will make another signature double switch. He’ll bring in Kenley Jansen and replace Matt Kemp in center with Skip Schumaker. Matt Kemp is clearly angry by the move, and he is shown cussing in the dugout before retreating to the clubhouse. Holliday strikes out on a foul tip for the third out.
Old friend Randy Choate comes in for the bottom of the seventh. Skip Schumaker singles with one out. A.J. Ellis draws a walk. Gordon pops out. Crawford flies out.
Kenley strikes out Craig, but Molina singles. That’s the Cardinal catcher’s third hit of the game. Freese strikes out, but Jay singles. Kenley rears back to strikeout Kozma and get out of the jam!
Mitchell Boggs is in for the bottom of the eighth for St. Louis. Punto singles, and that’s Shredder’s third hit of the night. Mark Ellis grounds into a force. They walk
Gonzo, and pinch-hitter Juan Uribe proceeds to double down the left field line! Ellis scores, and the Dodgers are up 5-3. They intentionally walk Ethier, and it pays off after Schumaker grounds into the double play to end the inning.
Brandon League will attempt to shut down the Cards in the ninth to give the Dodgers their 20th win of the season. Shane Robinson strikes out, and the Dodgers need just two more outs to tie the series up. Carpenter grounds out to short. The final out of the game is fitting-a Ty Wigginton groundout to Punto.
The Dodgers improve to 20-27 as Don Mattingly sighs a breath of relief as Brandon League pitches a 1-2-3 ninth.