The Dodgers blew out the Twins in game one of the doubleheader at Target Field in Minnesota on Thursday afternoon, winning by a score of 9-4.
The cold weather certainly didn’t effect the Dodger bats at all. The Dodgers pounded out nine runs on 15 hits. Yasiel Puig and Juan Uribe each had four hits, as the Dodgers scored three runs in the second, two in the third, and three more in the seventh.
It was another cold and rainy day at Minneapolis. The temperature said it was about 35 degrees, and it was so cold that most of the Dodgers bundled up like ninja turtles.
Starter Dan Haren pitched well enough to get the win. He sputtered at times, but threw 6.2 innings, allowing three earned runs, four runs total on six hits, with three walks and seven whiffs.
Thank god Minnesota’s pitching staff is horrendous. Opposing starter Mike Pelfrey didn’t make it past the fifth inning. He gave up five earned runs on seven hits in four innings to pick up the loss.
The Twins actually scored two runs in the bottom of the first before the chairs were warm. Well, as warm as they can get in 35 degree weather. Mauer and Plouffe had reached base, and Kubel’s RBI single, and the Dodgers making two errors (Two throwing errors on the same play) on one play, put the club behind early 2-0.
The Dodgers scored in the second when Gordon and Ethier and Uribe singled, and Gordon’s force play scored a run. Then Puig’s two-run double gave the Dodgers the lead for good.
Kemp (who was the DH today) had an RBI double in the third, and Uribe drove in another run with a single in the same frame. Uribe had a ground-rule double in the seventh that plated another run. Puig, Papi, and Olivo all had two runs driven in.
Of course after I wrote this article about Miguel Olivo, he just had to troll me by having a good game at the plate. Why does Baseball do this to me? He drew a walk, and was 2 for 3 with two RBIs, an RBI single, and a sacrifice fly. He also committed a throwing error. I’m glad Olivo had a good game, but keep in mind, it’s just one game. I still don’t think he’ll work out, but we’ll see. I’ll gladly eat crow if he does well.
Speaking of errors, the Dodgers made three more errors in today’s tilt. The gloveless wonders take a commanding error lead over MLB. Although, with the cold weather, I guess we can give them a break. But making three errors per game is going to kill them.
There were two replay challenges during the game. The Dodgers won one of them giving them a crucial double play in the fifth inning. This was a fun game. Let’s go over how it happened….
The Dodgers leave two runners stranded in the top of the first, and do not score against Mike Pelfrey. Dee Gordon is called out on strikes for the first out. Yasiel Puig then singles up the middle. Hanley pops out for the second out. Puig steals second with Adrian Gonzalez at the plate. Gonzo walks, to put runners at first and second. But Matt Kemp grounds out to short, with Eduardo Escobar going the long way to first.
In the bottom of the first, Brian Dozier grounds out. But Joe Mauer singles up the middle. Haren walks Trevor Plouffe. Jason Kubel singles to left, which scores Mauer to give the Twins a 1-0 lead. Crawford’s noodle arm can’t throw at all, and his throw is way offline for an error. Plouffe scores to put the Twins up 2-0 before anyone has gotten their Dodger dogs yet. Then Miguel Olivo, tries to throw out Kubel who was trying to take second, and his throw is wide, resulting in another error. Yup, that’s two errors on one play guys. Probably the most Dodger play of the year.
The Dodgers strike back in the top of the second. Andre Ethier leads-off with a single to center. Juan Uribe singles Ethier to second, and Olivo draws a walk to load the bases. Noodle armed Carl Crawford grounds into a force out at the plate, but Gordon’s fielder’s choice grounder scores a run, as Gordon just barely beats out Escobar’s throw to first, and the Dodgers get on the board. The score is now 2-1.
With Puig at the plate, Gordon steals second successfully. That’s his 14th steal of the year. Then Puig doubles over Fuld’s head to score Olvio and Gordon. The Dodgers take a 3-2 lead!
Haren settles down to throw a 123 bottom of the second, but with a little help from his friends. Ethier makes a spectacular running catch at the wall on Fuld’s deep drive to center. Haren whiffs Aaron Hicks, and Escobar flies out to left.
In the top of the third, Gonzo walks. Kemp doubles off the wall in center, Gonzo scores to out the Dodgers up 4-2. After Ethier lines out to Kubel, Uribe singles up the middle to score Bison. The Dodgers lead 5-2!
Haren throws another 123 inning in the bottom of the third. Dozier grounds out, Crawford makes a nice catch on Mauer’s sinking liner, and Plouffe whiffs.
Samuel Deduno takes over for Pelfrey in the top of the fifth. He walks Gonzo, but retires Kemp, and then whiffs Uribe and Ethier to end the frame.
Haren struggles in the bottom of the fifth, but a great double play gets the Dodgers out of the inning with the lead. Hicks walks. Escobar’s double to center sends Hicks to third. Dozier’s ground ball single to center immediately scores Hicks and Escobar, and the Dodger’s lead is cut to 5-4. Mauer walks. Then there is a coaching visit at the mound to see what the hell is wrong with Haren all of a sudden.
Then Plouffe hits a line drive that looks to be headed for a hit, but Hanley makes a great diving stop and a glove flip to Gordon for what appears a double play. The second base umpire initially says safe. Mattingly challenges, and the original call is overturned, and the Dodgers get the double play. So Dozier is erased at second. Kubel grounds out, and the Dodgers keep the lead.
Olivo singles to lead-off the top of the sixth. Crawford flies out, and Gordon whiffs. Puig singles, but Hanley’s force out ends the Dodger’s chances of scoring in the sixth.
In the bottom of the sixth, Haren recovers to throw a 123 inning. That’s important because the Dodgers break out and score three more runs in the top of the seventh. Gonzalez and Ethier singles, and Uribe’s ground-rule double only scores Ethier, because a fan reaches over the railing and touches it. The umpires call fan interference, and Ethier is stopped at third. Gonzo scores and the Dodgers lead 6-4. Then Olivo singles through the drawn-in infield to score Uribe, and Crawford’s single scores Olivo. The Dodgers take an 8-4 lead!
In the bottom of the seventh, Haren whiffs Hicks, and Escobar. Dozier singles, and the Dodgers remove Haren and bring in left hander J.P. Howell. He retires Mauer, and we go to the eighth.
Puig was looking for his fifth hit of the night in the top of the eighth, but draws a walk instead. Hanley flies out. Gonzo hits into a force play, and Kemp’s ground out ends the inning.
In the bottom of the eighth, Howell gets Plouffe to ground out. Kubel singles. Josmil Pinto’s grounder to short, should have been a double play, but Gordon drops the ball. The second base umpire originally ruled Plouffe out because Gordon dropped it on the transfer. But the Twins challenge, and win, Plouffe is ruled safe. That’s the third error for the Dodgers. Chris Perez is called in to replace Howell, and he gets Kurt Suzuki to fly out. There’s a wild pitch, but Fuld whiffs, and the Dodgers get out of it.
The Dodgers add another run in the top of the ninth against Jared Burton. Ethier walks. Uribe singles him to third. Olivo’s sac fly scores Dre to put the Dodgers up 9-4.
Move to the bottom of the ninth. Perez stays out and pinch-hitter Chris Herrmann fouls out to Uribe. Escobar whiffs, and Dozier flies out for the end of the game. Dodgers win 9-4!
Well, there’s not much time to rest for the boys in blue. The second game starts at 4:10 PM pacific time. Rookie Red Patterson is scheduled to make his major league debut. He’ll counter Left handed rookie Kris Johnson in a battle of rookies.
We’ll have all the 1’s and 2’s for you after the game.
Go Blue! X 2