Congratulations Philadelphia! You’ve just been Puig’d! Join the party with the rest of the National League. The Dodgers overcame an inconsistent Zack Greinke, to use a strong offensive attack to defeat opposing starter Jonathan Pettibone and the Philadelphia Phillies in the first game of this four game series. The Dodgers extended their winning streak to a season high six games. Six! Not a joke! It was rookie phenom Yasiel Puig who once again ignited the Dodger offense. The Cuban powerhouse sparked a two-run Dodger rally in the seventh, with a two-run single that helped them overcome a one run deficit. Puig’s two-run single was the decisive blow.
These games are not for the faint of heart I tell you. The Dodgers originally were up by 3-0, when they scored three runs off of a shaky Pettibone. The Dodgers used a pair of doubles, one from Matt Kemp, and one from Andre Ethier to take an early lead. Unfortunately a shaky Greinke gave up the lead eventually. The Phillies plated one run in the second on a solo home run from Domonic Brown. Then the Phillies scored two more runs in the fifth, to tie the game up at 3-3. They used four consecutive ground ball singles, with one deflecting off of Greinke’s leg.
The Phillies took the lead in the top of the seventh on another solo home run. This one was from Chase Utley which saw Yasiel Puig bang hard against the wall leaping to try and make the catch. But he’s one tough guy I tell you. He stayed in the game and came up as the hero once again.
The Dodgers used an A.J. Ellis walk, a Uribe bunt single, and then after an intentional walk to Hanley Ramirez loaded the bases. Big Nose Ryan Howard dropped Uribe’s bunt (It was scored a hit), which turned out to be a huge play, allowing the inning to extend. That allowed Yasiel Puig to deliver again with a two-run single through the hole at short to score two and give the Dodgers a 5-4 lead. The Dodgers got one more insurance run in the eighth when Kemp singled, stole second and third and scored on A.J. Ellis’s sacrifice fly.
Rookie Pettibone pitched well, allowing just three runs on four hits through six frames. He whiffed four, and at one point had retired 15 in a row, but he is rewarded for his efforts with a no-decision. Greinke allowed 12 hits through seven innings also whiffed five, but thanks to the Dodger offense picked up a win. Hey sometimes you need your teammates to back you up. The Dodger offense did just that for Birdman tonight.
Revere, and Utley both collected three hits for the Phillies. Delmon Young had four hits on the night. All total the Phillies collected 14 hits. For the Dodgers, Matt Kemp went 2 for 4, and Puig is now hitting .427 in case you were wondering.
The Dodgers used their real closer Kenley Jansen to shut the door in the top of the ninth, and the Dodgers held on to win 6-4! While I start the conga line, here’s how the game played out, and some of the highlights.
Birdman Zack Greinke begins the game by whiffing Ben Revere on a called third strike. Chase Utley smokes a double off the wall in right. But Greinke recovers nicely to retire Jimmy Rollins on a pop-up, and Big Nose Ryan Howard on a slicing fly ball to left, which Andre Ethier sprints over to the line to make a nice running catch.
The Dodgers strike early in the bottom of the first. Rookie Jonathon Pettibone walks lead-off hitter Skip Schumaker. Yasiel Puig drills a line drive that was headed straight up the middle, but the ball deflects off of Pettibone’s foot, caroming over to Rollins who forces Schumaker at second. It’s just the typical 1-6-4 force out. Adrian Gonzalez singles through the hole at first to send Puig flying around to third. Matt Kemp’s double down the left field line goes just past the diving outstretched glove of Kevin Frandsen to score Puig and send Gonzo to third. Dodgers lead 1-0! Andre Ethier’s double off the center field wall scores Gonzo and Bison to extend the Dodger lead to 3-0.
The Phillies have a meeting on the mound to try and counsel Pettibone. A.J. Ellis’s deep drive to right is caught on the run by Delmon Young for the second out. Uribe’s grounder ends the frame. The Dodgers do damage though, and lead early 3-0.
Greinke immediately starts to struggle in the top of the second. Greinke serves up a lead-off solo home run to Domonic Brown. That’s Brown’s 21 long ball of the season. That makes it a 3-1 game. Then Delmon Young singles to left. Frandsen walks. Humberto Quintero’s fly ball to center isn’t deep enough to advance the runners, as Kemp makes a strong throw back to third. With Pettibone batting, Greinke whirls around to pick off Young at second base. Nice job! Of course we record a Tootblan for Delmon Young. Finally Greinke whiffs Pettibone to end the frame, but he made a lot of pitches. One has to wonder if the long wait after the first inning factored into his wildness.
Pettibone settles down somewhat in the bottom of the second as the Dodgers strand a runner at third. Nick Punto bloops a single to center, and then steals second. Greinke is ordered to bunt which he does, moving Punto to third with one out. But the eternally lousy Schumaker whiffs on a full count called third strike. Puig grounds out to second, and the Dodgers don’t score.
In the top of the third, Ben Revere leads off with a single, and then is thrown out trying to steal second on another cannon throw from A.J. The Dodgers have completely stopped the opposing team’s running game this year, thanks to A.J. and Fedex. Greinke then whiffs Utley and Rollins to end the third.
Pettibone sets the Dodgers down in order 123 in the bottom of the third. Greinke sets the Phills down in the bottom of the fourth as well.
Greinke served up the lead fairly quick by allowing the Phillies to score twice in the top of the fifth. Philadelphia used four consecutive ground ball singles, from Pettibone, Revere, Utley, and Rollins to tie the game at 3-3. Utley’s single bounced off of Greinke’s leg into no-man’s land. It could have been worse, had not Howard grounded into an inning ending double play to keep the game tied at three.
The Phillies threatened again in the top of the sixth, but Greinke barely wiggles his way out of it. Young and Frandsen collect with back-to-back one-out singles. Thank goodness Quintero grounds into a double play which ended the frame.
The Phllies take the lead in the top of the seventh. Chase Utley’s solo home run over the right field wall gives Philadelphia the 4-3 lead. However on the home run, Puig leaped into the wall trying to make the catch on Utley’s homer, and appeared to be injured on the play. He seemed to be ok.
Right hander Justin De Fratus replaces Pettibone in the bottom of the seventh. Pettibone came out with the lead. He pitched six frames, allowing three runs on four hits and whiffed four. The Dodgers take advantage big time and begin a rally that ends with them re-taking the lead. De Fratus walks A.J. to start the frame. Juan Uribe is ordered to bunt, which he does, but Big Nose Howard drops the ball. It’s scored a bunt single, and the Dodgers are in business. Then the Buntathon continues as Punto then sacrifices the runners to second and third. Pinch-hitter Hanley Ramirez is intentionally walked to load the bases. Punch and Judy Schumaker whiffs pathetically, but thank god he didn’t GIDP. Our Cuban hero, Puig smacks a base hit through the hole at short. A.J. and Uribe both score, and the Dodgers take the lead 5-4! Antonio Bastardo has to relieve De Fratus and he retires Gonzo for the final out of the inning.
The Dodgers use a combo of J.P. Howell, and Ronald Belisario to retire the Phillies in the top of the eighth. Belisario whiffs Frandsen ending the inning. Bastardo stays out for the bottom of the eighth. The left hander allows a single to Kemp. Ethier pops out. Kemp steals second, for his eighth stolen base of the season. Then Kemp steals third! A.J. Ellis’s sacrifice fly scores Bison, giving the Dodgers a much needed insurance run, to give the Dodgers a 6-4 lead.
We move to the top of the ninth. Enter closer Kenley Jansen. Carlos Ruiz flies out to left. Pinch-hitter Michael Young flies to right. Revere singles to keep the Phillies alive for another at-bat. Finally Utley lines out to Gonzo, and the Dodgers win their sixth in a row!
Greinke wins his fifth, and Jansen records his seventh save of the year. The Dodgers win 6-4. The Dodgers now improve to 36-42. Arizona won tonight, so they remain six games behind in the NL West. The Dodgers are on a roll! And I don’t mean of the dinner or croissant variety.
The Dodgers look like a completely different team. The great part about this if the Dodgers keep winning, then we won’t have to fire anyone! Can the Dodgers win lucky seven!? Join us tomorrow as the Dodgers look to keep their great momentum going in tomorrow’s game. That will feature a battle of left handers as John Lannan will duel Chris Capuano at 7:10 PM.