The Dodgers never could rally back after Roberto Hernandez served up four homeruns to the Nationals in the 6-4 loss on Labor Day. Hernandez looked like he was pitching batting practice as the Nats took him deep over and over again.
The Dodgers didn’t roll over completely, and there was some exciting Dodger debuts by Yimi Garcia and the highly touted
prospect Joc Pederson. The Dodgers had the lead after Matt Kemp hit a two-run blast in the bottom of the first. The Dodgers scored their other two runs on Juan Uribe RBI singles in the seventh and ninth innings. The ninth inning mini rally fell short when Joc Pederson ended the night with a strikeout against Rafael Soriano in his first Major League at-bat.
Yimi Garcia looked great in his Dodger debut, and the right-hander pitched two scoreless frames only allowing one hit and striking out one.
The game came to an exciting moment in the bottom of the ninth inning when Joc Pederson came up to bat with two on and two out. Soriano welcomed him into the Majors with a strikeout, and the closer picked up his 31st save on the season.
Dodgers 4 6 0
Nationals 6 9 0
WP- Gonzalez (7-9)
LP- Hernandez (8-10)
S- Soriano (31)
HR- Werth (16), Kemp (17), Cabrera (13), Span 2 (4)
Washington wasted no time showing off their muscle versus the Dodgers in L.A. Former Dodger Jayson Werth hit a towering solo homerun off Roberto Hernandez. His long hair was flowing behind him as he rounded the bases to give the Nationals an early 1-0 lead.
The Dodgers struck back in the home half of the first thanks to a costly two-out walk to Adrian Gonzalez and then a huge Bison Blast by Matt Kemp into right center. The Dodgers took a 2-1 lead against Gio Gonzalez, but the Nats weren’t about to go down easily.
The homerun derby continued in the top of the third inning when Roberto Hernandez allowed not one but two additional homeruns to Washington. Asdrubal Cabrera led-off with a solo homerun to left center, and Denard Span homered to right center an out later. The Nats shifted the lead back in their favor 3-2.
The Nationals challenged a force play in the top of the first. Dee Gordon legged out an infield single, and the safe call is overturned by the New York office. Gio Gonzalez’s tag just swiped Gordon before his foot touched the bag according to the video replay. The Dodgers went down in order thereafter against Gonzalez in the inning.
Hernandez served up his fourth homerun of the night to the Nationals in the top of the fifth. Hernandez started off the inning by walking Cabrera. Then Denard Span hit his second homerun of the game against Hernandez on a sinker that never sunk. The Nats were sure during their best to sink the Dodgers, and they took a 5-2 lead while chasing Hernandez out of the game.
In comes Chris Perez for his first outing since spending time on the disabled list with bone spurs in his right ankle. Perez allowed a two-out walk and stolen base by Jayson Werth. Luckily Scott Can Slyke caught up to a well hit ball by Adam LaRoche in left field to end the inning.
Roberto Hernandez pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed 5 runs on 5 hits with 4 strikeouts and 1 walk on 91 pitches.
We had a Alex Guerrero sighting in the bottom of the fifth. Recalled on Monday from Triple-A, Guerrero had only played in two games for the Dodgers back in the Australia series. Guerrero struck out swinging against Gio Gonzalez in his first Dodger Stadium at-bat.
Alex Guerrero had played two games with the Dodgers back on March 22nd and 23rd in Sydney. He struck out in his one at-bat. So far Alex is 0-for-2 with 2 strikeouts in 2 Major League at-bats.
Jamey Wright promptly allowed a lead-off single to Ian Desmond to open the sixth inning. Matt Kemp made a great catch almost against the right field wall on another ball hit by catcher Wilson Ramos that carried. Dee Gordon also made a nice play to rob a base hit from Cabrera.
Gonzalez zeroed out the Dodgers again in the bottom of the sixth.
Brandon League allowed another run to Washington in the seventh. Gonzalez led off with a double over the head of Yasiel Puig who was playing shallow. Anthony Rendon’s RBI double put Washington up 6-2. The Nationals challenged the play at the plate. Juan Uribe gobbled up a ball hit by Kevin Frandsen, and the third baseman made a great throw to the plate to get Rendon out at home. After the review, the home-plate collision and out call is upheld.
The Dodgers chased Gonzalez out of the bottom of the seventh inning with back-to-back singles by Matt Kemp and Scott Van Slyke. Drew Storen replaced Gonzalez with two on and nobody out. Puig grounded into a force out which advanced Kemp to third. Juan Uribe’s RBI single cut the Washington lead to 6-3. A.J. Ellis lined out to Span in center. Andre Ethier, the pinch-hitter, spurred a pitching change by the Nats. The left-hander Matt Thornton was asked to get the final out of the frame, and the Dodgers countered with Justin Turner instead burning Ethier for any future at-bat in the game. Turner chased a “high, hard fastball at 96″ as described by Vin Scully, and the Dodgers stranded the two runners.
Gio Gonzalez pitched 6 innings and allowed 3 runs on 3 hits with 4 strikeouts and 2 walks on 74 pitches.
Yimi Garcia made his Major League debut for the Dodgers in the top of the eighth. The first batter he faced, Bryce Harper, singled to right field. The Nationals challenged another call on a double play grounded into by Wilson Ramos. The call is upheld. Cabrera sent a Yimi fastball to deep right field, but Kemp once again made a great catch right up on the wall.
Tyler Clippard sent the Dodgers down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the eighth.
YES to YIMI. Garcia pitched a second scoreless inning in the eighth. He looked like the real deal, and struck out Rendon with a mean slider! That’s his first Major League strikeout.
Rafael Soriano came in to pitch the ninth, and the Dodgers squeezed out one more run against the Nats. Matt Kemp struck out swinging. SVS flied out to center. Yasiel Puig extended the inning with a two-out walk. Puig took second on defensive indifference. Uribe came up with another RBI single, and Puig brought in the fourth Dodger run. With Crawford at bat, Joc Pederson was waiting on deck to make his MLB debut. With his heart pumping out of his chest, Joc went 3-2 against Soriano before being called out on strike three.
That’s okay, Joc. I’m excited for his bright future with the Dodgers.
The Dodgers drop to 77-61 on the season. They are now just 2 games ahead of the Giants in the division after the September 1st loss. Clayton Kershaw will counter Doug Fister in Game 2 on Tuesday night.