Hindsight is always 20/20. Of course. But I bet that Dave Roberts wishes he would’ve pulled a different play in the top of the first inning yesterday. Instead of having Chris Taylor swing away, he called for a sacrifice squeeze. The Dodgers already had two runs in, and two runners on base. Instead of getting to the rookie pitcher early, Taylor hit into a inning ending double-play where Utley was tagged out trying to go home and Yasmani Grandal was tagged trying to head into third.
I’ve long been a proponent of more small ball, more hit and runs, that type of thing, but this was just too much small ball, at the wrong time, in the wrong venue. Hopefully this adds to Roberts’ experience and serves as a reminder of what not to do in the future.
Since it was a one-run game going into the bottom of the eighth, those runs could have come in handy. Ultimately, reliever Chris Hatcher gave up a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth that allowed the Rockies to pull ahead for good. Would it have mattered if those other runs to come in? Maybe, maybe not. Perhaps what’s more important is that the Dodgers, while their offense has definitely improved, is still not great at getting runners in. They had multiple innings where they had two runners on base, and didn’t drive them home. Something to work on.
Clayton Kershaw and Alex Wood were two bright spots at Coors Field. While Kershaw has not looked as sharp lately as he normally does, he only allowed two runs in seven innings. I’m not exactly sure what is going on with Kershaw lately — his slider definitely doesn’t look as sharp as it has in years past. But, he still showed his greatness by holding a very good offense to only two runs in a hitter’s park.
Alex Wood was down right dominant in his start on Saturday. He did not allow any Rockies to score, and he struck out 10. It was the second time in as many games that he struck out 10 or more batters. He has definitely earned his starting position on this staff.
Monday afternoon Wood was named the Player Of the Week, the second straight Dodger to be given the honor, following Cody Bellinger last week.
The Dodgers did not achieve one of their goals, overtaking the Rockies for the lead in the division. By splitting the series, they stayed 1.5 games behind Colorado. But with all the odd things that can happen at Coors, taking the spilt against a pretty good team and not incurring any injuries or other issues can be considered a good series.
Coolest thing in this series? The height difference between Corey Seager‘s and Yasiel Puig‘s home runs. Seager’s had a 42° launch angle that went 166’ in the air. Puig’s was a line drive shot that only had a 16° launch angle.
The Dodgers now head into San Francisco to face the Giants. The Giants are coming off a series where they took the last three of four games from the Reds, and are playing much better. Buster Posey has been having a very good season, with a .370/.452/.574 slash line, and only a 9.7% K rate. The Giants have now moved past the Padres into fourth place in the division. Rich Hill will be making his return from DL on Tuesday. The pitching matchups will be Brandon McCarthy against Matt Cain on Monday, Hill vs. Ty Blach on Tuesday, and a great matchup in Kershaw vs Johnny Cueto on Wednesday. Blach is the only left-hander in the bunch, and I expect the Dodgers to take two of three from the Giants.
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