Good morning Dodger Blue! For everyone who fought the sandman to stay awake and watch the Dodgers take on the Snakes from Australia were rewarded with a nice crisp clean 3-1 Dodger win.
The day has finally arrived, and Dodger Baseball has begun. The Dodgers are back, We’re back, and so are you! There’s another exciting season that awaits us. Tonight at around 2 AM the Dodgers kicked off the start to their 2014 Baseball season with a Yasiel Puig whiff.
This is of course the first time the club has played in Sydney, Australia, which is the reason for the strange start time. Well strange because over here it’s two in the morning. The game was actually supposed to start at 1AM, but was delayed because of rain.
Talk about rain, the Snakes have had a horrific spring. Their ace pitcher Patrick Corbin is probably having Tommy John surgery, and according to reports, their team bus broke down in Sydney. Talk about putting coal in someone’s stocking. I feel sorry for Corbin. I hate to see young pitchers go down like that, and I wish him a speedy recovery. But the Dbacks as a team? Pffffffft, I could care less. I feel sorry for Corbin, yet I feel nothing for the Dbacks as a team. Yup, I feel nothing for them or their fans. Zip. You reap what you sow Dbacks, you reap what you sow.
So the club had to start left hander Wade Miley instead. Miley pitched well, but was unable to outduel Kershaw. Miley tossed five frames, and whiffed eight Dodgers. However he also allowed three earned runs, and took the loss.
As for the Dodgers, they were able to pick up a somewhat clean win while some people were slumbering. The Dodgers were certainly able to flip the switch this morning. The Dodgers didn’t win many games in the spring, but that’s why these guys make the big bucks. They were able to flip the switch.
Just like Clayton Kershaw was able to flip the switch. Let’s not beat around the bush. We were all a little concerned with Kershaw’s spring. He gave up a lot of runs, and didn’t look particularly sharp. But of course spring results mean nothing. The truly great can flip the switch when the games count. Kershaw certainly flipped the switch, and the script on the annoying Snakes, by beating them 3-1.
The ace lefty held the Snakes to one earned run on five hits over 6.2 frames, while whiffing seven and walking one. Kershaw made 97 pitches, and was removed with two outs in the seventh. Kershaw’s dominance is like a rare jewel, that deserves to be praised and fondled.
But it wasn’t just another stingy Kershaw opening day performance, some of the other guys contributed as well. Namely Scott Van Slyke. Left fielder Carl Crawford kind of screwed us here by not being able to make the flight. Crawford’s fiancée is having a baby, and he was placed on paternity leave.
So the Dodgers had to play Scott Van Slyke. Sometimes I forget just how underrated he really is. Especially considering he’s the only one off the bench that can hit. Well, Van Slyke proved he’s more valuable than people give him credit for by being involved in all of the Dodger scoring, driving in two of the three Dodger runs.
Van Slyke doubled in the second frame, and then socked a two-run home run that landed just fair inside the right field corner in the fourth. He had a great game, deserves some major kudos for coming up big tonight when the Dodgers needed him. He also becomes a trivia question of “Who was the first player to homer in 2014”.
The Dodgers had just five hits, but they made them all count. The boys in blue scored their first run of the 2014 season in the second inning. Adrian Gonzalez walked, and after van Slyke doubled off the base of the wall in left sending Gonzo to third, (It originally looked like it had gone out and bounced back into play, but it was a double), Uribe whiffed, and Andre Ethier’s grounder scored Gonzo, to give the Dodgers the 1-0 lead.
The Dodgers scored again in the fourth frame, when Gonzalez struck out on a wild pitch, and reached first safely when the ball bounced to the backstop. Van Slyke immediately followed with his two-run shot inside the foul pole in right, and the Dodgers were up 3-0.
The Dodgers also left the bases loaded in the fith. In that frame, A.J. Ellis walked. After Kersh and Puig whiffed, Turner singled to center, and Hanley reached on an error. But Gonzo whiffed.
Speaking of Puig, he kind of had a bad night at the plate. He struck out three times in an 0 for 5 performance, and took a serious shot at the sombrero. You wouldn’t believe how many Puig is broken tweets after one game I saw come across my timeline. Yeesh. One game people, calm it down.
Anyways, the Dodgers were up 3-0. Kershaw’s only blemish came in the sixth, when he gave up a lead-off double to Goldschmidt, wild pitched him to third, and he eventually scored on a Mark Trumbo grounder.
With the club up 3-1 in the top of the seventh, Kershaw was removed for reliever Chris Perez. After Perez got the last out in the bottom of the seventh, Brian Wilson was called in to pitch the bottom of the eighth. Wilson looked pretty good, whiffing Aaron Hill, and retiring Goldschmidt, and Prado.
The Snakes really didn’t put up much of a fight throughout the game. Besides the sixth, they had runners at second and third in the first frame thanks to back to back ground ball singles from Hill and Goldschmidt. They were no match for Kershaw’s excellence.
Kenley Jansen entered in the bottom of the ninth. Oh and in case you are wondering the Dodgers are playing as the road team for both games. Jansen whiffs Trumbo. he got Montero to ground out. After issuing a walk to Owings, he got Parra to ground out back to the box for the final out. The Dodgers win 3-1!
Honestly guys, I’m way too tired to make any kind of Australia puns here. No fosters quips, or references to the Dodgers packing a Kangaroo punch. The Dodgers just went out and got the job done, beating up on a demoralized team. They may not be hitting much right now, but eventually the hitters will catch up. In the meantime, the pitching staff looks pretty damn good. let’s not forget the importance of flipping the switch when needed. This is why these guys are the best. Sit back and enjoy the ride guys.
Tomorrow, er I should say tonight the second game will commence at 7 PM pacific time. You can watch that game on SportsnetLA, and or MLBN I believe. And you can also check out our game recap immediately following the game. Hyun-jin Ryu versus Trevor Cahill. We hope you join us. I can’t wait to take another six month journey with you all. And so it begins again my friends…….. GO BLUE!