The Dodgers lost again in Pittsburgh today, dropping the rubber game in a 6-3 loss to the Pirates. No surprise there. The game was originally delayed about an hour because of heavy rain. Both teams had late scratches because of injuries. The Dodgers scratched Juan Uribe because of a sore back. While the Bucs scratched old friend Russell Martin as well. Injuries are just par for the course this season for this pathetic club.
Zack Greinke was ineffective and lost to rookie Gerrit Cole. Greinke allowed five runs on eight hits in five frames. He walked two, and whiffed only three while making 104 pitches. The rookie, Cole, pitched well enough, and with the Dodger’s pop-gun offense that was plenty. The top draft pick allowed three runs on seven hits through 5.2 innings and whiffed only one, but did not issue a walk.
The big blow was Pedro Alvarez’s three-run home run in the top of the fifth, which broke a 2-2 tie. The big man knocked in three of the six Pittsburgh runs. Alex Presley had a great game going 3 for 4 with a home run, and Garrett Jones had two hits and two runs driven in.
Yasiel Puig had another big game going 3 for 4 with his first stolen base of his career. He scored a run, and raised his average to .479. Andre Ethier went 2 for 4 with two RBI singles, which accounted for just about the entire Dodger offense.
The Dodgers fell behind right away as Greinke allowed two deflating first inning runs in the bottom of the first. The Bucs used consecutive singles from Alex Presley, and Jordy Mercer. A double from Garrett Jones scored both runners to put the Pirates up 2-0. The inning could have even been worse had Luis Cruz not thrown out Alex Presley at home on an Andrew McCutchen fielder’s choice grounder.
The Dodgers got on the board in the top of the second, but they can rarely ever score more than a single run in any inning. Yasiel Puig singles, and steals second, and advances to third on a grounder. He scores on a Tim Federowicz grounder to make it a 2-1 game.
The Dodgers tied it up in the top of the fourth. Nick Punto with a lead-off single. After Adrian Gonzalez lines out, Puig a ground ball single puts runners at first and second. Ethier’s single to left scores Punto to tie the game at 2-2.
The tie was pretty short lived, as the Bucs would just easily score three more huge runs in the bottom of the fifth all with two outs, to knock Greinke out of the game. After Mercer grounds out, and McCutchen whiffs, Jones singles. Walker walks. Then Pedro Alvarez blasts a huge three-run shot to center and the Bucs take a 5-2 lead.
The Dodgers scored their third run in the top of the sixth, but that was all they could muster. This inning was a crucial point in the game and of course Don Mattingly was asleep at the wheel. The Dodgers had a two out rally of their own. With two gone, Gonzo doubles. Puig’s single is unable to score Gonzo because he is so unbelievably slow. So he has to stop at third. Ethier’s second RBI single of the day does score Gonzo and the Dodgers are down 5-3. The Pirates double-switch Cole out of the game and bring in Justin Wilson. Fedex draws a walk to load the bases. Remember the game is on the line here, so with the .132 punch and Judy hitting Luis Cruz up you would expect a competent manager to pinch-hit with anybody. But nope, Mattingly has checked out, and allowed Cruz to bat. Of course he predictably whiffed and the inning ended with the Dodgers only being able to score once. In usual fashion, Mattingly double-switched Cruz out of the game the very next frame. Typical Donnie Baseball, a day late and a dollar short.
That’s really the story of the Dodger’s pathetic 2013 season. A day late and a dollar short. The Pirates added one more on a solo home run from Presely off of Matt Guerrier, but that didn’t matter as the Dodgers never scored again.
The Dodgers had one last chance in the top of the ninth. The Pirates were 30-1 when leading after seven innings this season, thanks to something the Dodgers don’t have, a dominant bullpen. With two outs, A.J. Ellis walks, and pinch-hitter Hanley Ramirez hobbled to the plate. Hanley is just a very expensive pinch-hitter now. Buc’s closer Jason Grilli closes the door and whiffs Hanley, and the Dodgers lose again 6-3.
Not much else to say today, other than the Dodgers suck major balls. This lousy team is nowhere near being a playoff-contender and is in desperate need of change. It’s time. The Dodgers fall to ten games under .500 again with a 29-39 record. The next loss will be the Dodger’s 40 of the season.
Tomorrow the Dodgers are off and then the Boys in Blue will travel to Yankee Stadium for the big two-game series against the Yanks, kicking off on Tuesday night. The Dodgers haven’t played there since the 1981 World Series. Perhaps the Dodgers can just leave Donnie Baseball behind in the Bronx before they come home? A guy can dream can’t he?
Speaking of the Yankees, you can catch me tonight as a guest on the Yanks Go Yard preview show podcast. The show starts at 7 PM pacific time. Myself and the YGY crew will discuss the upcoming New York series, Yasiel Puig, the brawls and much more. You can catch the show at the link here.
That’s about it for now. I want to wish my father and all of the father’s out there a very happy father’s day from everyone at Lasorda’s Lair.