Pinch-hit homeruns are exciting, but back-to-back homeruns are even more thrilling. The Dodgers stunned this year’s biggest enemy, the D-backs, back in July as they gained momentum going into the All-Star break and swept the Snakes in three games in Arizona. The D-backs’ Josh Collmenter blew the tie in the bottom of the fourteenth inning in an epic long five-hour battle between the two NL West teams. While we are counting down the top ten Dodger homeruns of 2013, number seven is a double dose of Dodger homerun fun.
Little did the D-backs know at the time back in July, but the Dodgers would be celebrating at Chase Field with a little pool party almost three months later after the Boys in Blue clinched the National League Division. At the time of the sweep in mid-July, the Snakes were still leading the West but the Dodgers were beginning to surge.
After the D-backs blew the lead in the ninth inning thanks to a RBI single by A.J. Ellis in the top the ninth off of Heath Bell, Josh Collmenter had to pitch five innings of relief beginning in the tenth. Collmenter served up not one but two Dodger homeruns. The back-to-back solo shots by Hanley Ramirez and A.J. Ellis in the top of the fourteenth inning gave the Dodgers the eventual 7-5 victory. Kenley Jansen pitched two scoreless innings in the thirteenth and fourteenth innings to shut the door on the snakes and seal the sweep. The Dodger bullpen pitched nine scoreless innings in total during the long game after neither Hyun-jin Ryu nor Tyler Skaggs, the starters, were involved in the decision.
With the win that hot Wednesday night in Arizona, the Dodgers finally clawed and scratched their way back to .500 on the season for the first time since April 30th. The Dodgers were beginning to click and start their historic streak.
“I didn’t even realize we are at .500,” said A.J. Ellis. “It’s awesome. I hope it’s the last time we sit at that number and we get over it tomorrow. We might be the only team in baseball not looking forward 100 percent to the break.”
The Dodgers were not only looking forward 100 percent to the All-Star Break, but they also were heading straight toward their ultimate division crown come September. The D-backs watched their division lead diminish down to 1 1/2 games ahead of the second-place Dodgers after the sweep, and they would soon watch as the Dodgers took over the lead and never looked back.