Woa what a great game that was huh? The Dodgers returned home to face their NLCS foes, the Cardinals and one upped Adam Wainwright and the Red Birds by a score of 1-0. This was the first 1-0 game the Dodgers have played this year.
Before the game the Dodger’s lovable third baseman Juan Uribe returned to the lineup, being activated from the disabled list. Carlos Triunfel was optioned as the corresponding roster move. The portly veteran’s eighth inning single keyed the winning rally. But it was Kemp’s great throw to nail Allen Craig at the plate in the seventh inning that played big.Cardinals 0 5 0 Dodgers 1 5 0 WP-Wilson-1-2 LP-Wainwright-10-4 SV-Jansen-24
Before that though, it was a nail biting pitching duel between Adam Wainwright, and Josh Beckett. The two veterans dueled each other inning by inning, tossing zeroes up on the board left and right.
Wainwright threw eight innings and allowed one earned run on five hits and whiffed seven. Beckett allowed just four hits across seven shutout frames, while walking two and whiffing four. The Dodgers didn’t have a hit until the bottom of the sixth. Wainwright had only allowed a first inning walk to Dee Gordon until Miguel Rojas’s line drive single to left. Gordon followed with a bloop single to left. But Yasiel Puig grounded into an inning ending double play that ruined any chance of scoring. That was all the Dodgers could muster off of Wainwright, until the bottom of the eighth.
Beckett was just as dominant, allowing just two hits and two walks until the end of the seventh frame. The Dodgers really needed to have Beckett be on his A-game because of Wainwright, and he matched Wainwright pitch for pitch. But Beckett only got a no-decision. Ironically it was Brian Wilson who vulture the win on his bobblehead night.
But the big play of the game came in the top of the seventh. Beckett was rolling along with two outs and nobody on base, but he started to get tired. Allen Craig doubled off the wall in right. Then Jon Jay singled through the hole in left. Matt Kemp fired a one-hop strike to catcher Drew Butera, and nailed Craig at the plate. Butera made a great swipe tag. The play was the third out of the frame. But no so fast, the Cardinals would challenge. The New York office upheld the original call of out, and the Dodgers escaped. So the game remained scoreless. The play was pretty close. You be the judge… safe or out?
After Brian Wilson entered the game to throw a scoreless eighth inning, the Dodgers scored the only run of the game in the bottom half of the eighth. With Wainwright still on the mound, Uribe’s single up the middle would start the rally.
Butera would sacrifice Uribe to second, and then Rojas’s infield single to short put runners at the corners with one out. The Dodgers call up Justin Turner to pinch-hit for Wilson’s spot, and he came up huge. Turner knocks a base hit through the hole at short, Uribe scores, and the Dodgers go up 1-0!
Wainwright wild pitched Turner to second, but he recovered to whiff Gordon and Puig to keep the game a 1-0 score.
There was more drama in the top of the ninth. Kenley Jansen was called into close the shop. Holliday whiffed on a foul tip for the first out. Then Matt Adam’s sinking liner just falls in for a single. Kemp tries to make a diving grab, but can only trap the ball.
The Cardinals have Peter Bourjos pinch-run for Adams. He tries to steal second, and initially was safe, but he came off the bag when he popped up after his slide. Rojas alertly tags him out. Huge play! Of course the Cardinals would challenge the play. The New York office wasn’t having it. The replays show that he had indeed come off the bag. The call stands, he’s out!
Then with two outs, Peralta would fly out to Ethier for the final out. Dodgers win 1-0!
Hanley Ramirez is still day-to-day with his irritated AC joint in his right shoulder. He was checked out by the medical staff, and there appears to be no structural damage to the shoulder. So the Dodgers are going to continue giving him treatment in hopes of avoiding having to send him to the disabled list. In the meantime slick fielding Miguel Rojas played again at shortstop. He was 2 for 3 today with two singles.
The Dodgers are now 45-36 and with the Giants losing again, are now just two games back of first place in the NL West. Is this for real?
The four game series continues tomorrow evening. Flame throwing Carlos Martinez will battle Hyun-jin Ryu Friday night at 7:10 PM, in what should be another outstanding pitching duel. Runs are sure to be at a premium throughout this series. Don’t sleep!