Dodgers Drop Three Straight in Arizona, Prepare for San Francisco

The first time the Dodgers played the Diamondbacks this year in a four-game series in Los Angeles, it was a lack of offense that prevented the Dodgers from winning the series. In a four-game rematch in Arizona this time around, Los Angeles simply got beat on both sides of the ball.

Whether Arizona exposed a potential vulnerability in the Los Angeles pitching staff — or whether the Snakes were firing on all cylinders with their bats — it remains to be seen what type of team the Dodgers really are right now. Regardless, the Diamondbacks outscored the Dodgers 29-17 over the final three games to capture the three-games -to-one series victory.

The lone win for the Dodgers came in the opener on Thursday night, powered by six strong innings from Dustin May and Freddie Freeman’s first long ball of the year.

The final two losses of the series looked very similar on paper. The Dodgers certainly scored enough runs to win in both contests, but the starting pitching was crushed by an Arizona offense that would not be denied.

Saturday’s 12-8 loss saw righty starter Noah Syndergaard surrender six earned runs on eight hits, as the flamethrower lasted just four full innings. Michael Grove’s stat line in Sunday’s 11-6 defeat was even worse, as the youngster completed just 3-1/3 innings, allowing nine earned runs on 12 hits and a walk.

Arizona featured a balanced offensive attack on Sunday that saw the lineup outhit the Dodgers 16 to seven. Designated hitter Pavin Smith did the most damage on Sunday, going 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI. Leadoff hitter and third baseman Josh Rojas went 3-for-5 with three singles and scored twice to pace Arizona.

Although it’s still very early in the season, there are a few apparent holes in the Los Angeles lineup that might be worth mentioning. Max Muncy — who has been the club’s primary cleanup hitter this year, has just four base hits in his first 33 AB this series, producing an ugly .121 batting average. Even though Muncy’s leading the universe in walks, his slump is overly reminiscent to the way he started his 2021 campaign.

And, while the Dodgers knew that Miguel Rojas wouldn’t come anywhere close to the offensive numbers they’re accustomed to seeing from their shortstops in previous seasons, the 34-year-old journeyman has gone just 2-for-17 in his early moments of 2023.

Similarly, Chris Taylor has opened the year going 3-for-24, despite two of those hits being long balls.

Next up for the Dodgers is a three-game set on the road against division-rival San Francisco beginning Monday. Scheduled to throw for Los Angeles are Julio Urias, Dustin May and Clayton Kershaw, respectively.

20 thoughts on “Dodgers Drop Three Straight in Arizona, Prepare for San Francisco

  1. The Diamondbacks young speed exposed the Dodgers vulnerability against the steal as they stole bases at will. Something will need to be done about that by the pitchers and catchers going forward.
    With Thor and Grove it looked like batting practice by Az. Everything was hit hard.


  2. These last 3 games are about as bad as I have seen the Dodgers play in a long time. Still early, but, some things need to get better or we are not going to the playoffs.


  3. As stated here it’s a long season. I am surprised at Sydergaard’s showing so far. Gonsolin will help the rotation. I am glad Outman is playing well and Vargas has flashed great potential. He was a 3rd baseman in the minors so he can be moved to 3rd. Who is making the call on playing whoever it is has always stuck with the struggling veterans way too long. Busch could be brought up to play second and Vargas can play 3rd. An outfielder or Muncy could have an “injury” I don’t remember if there is room on the 40 man. Muncy and Taylor look outmatched at the plate especially against the opposing teams top 3 starters


  4. When a player is woefully under performing why don’t they sit him down and have them work on it full time?? In our work if we underperform we are dismissed. Make the player responsible for his performance or lack there of. Yes it’s timing etc but not playing is a huge motivational tool.


    1. In-game performance is much different than batting practice or sim games. How do we know that Max and/or CT3 aren’t looking great in practice?

      I’m not giving up on Max yet, but I do agree with those who say that hitting him cleanup at this point is ridiculous. It just puts all that much more pressure on him. That said, you don’t want your cleanup hitter’s main strategy to be drawing walks.

      I have not checked stats, but it seems to me that Max is hitting the ball hard when he hits it. Problem is he’s striking out too often. How about deciding to hack at the first good pitch you see. If you don’t get to a 2-strike count in your at bat, you can’t strike out on the next strike.


    2. I agree but part of it is the short bench of only 4 players with one being a catcher and but Vargas and Rojas recently dinged up. That leaves little flexibility.


  5. Letting them continue to fail is a little like the sunk cost fallacy. They failed horribly most of last year. So you play them anyway? Makes no sense as they are not showing improvement. The continuing strike outs are alarming. You want them to figure it out in-game like last year? Why not give Busch a shot? Muncy can see it’s not a strike but can’t hit the ones that are? Not very comforting.


    1. Muncy with 2 HRs, 7 RBIs and that’s why you stick with a struggling player that you are paying whatever $millions.


      1. Actually Gary that is not a reason to stick with a struggling player, unless you think he has magically solved his year of mediocrity this 1 game. No question he has the ability to hit 2 homers. But your cleanup hitter has to do that more than occasionally and hit over the Belli line. I’m also a big muncy fan but he looks horrible again this year and appears to be done.


      2. He improved dramatically last year when he started using that “back step” approach at the plate.
        Then, this spring, he decided to do away with it for some reason.
        He started using it again for the first time over the weekend.
        Certainly no guarantee of continued success but I’m not ready to say he’s done.


      3. One or two good games doesn’t mean he has solved his problem. Plus he is still a poor defender. So he has to produce. I would still drop him down in the lineup.


  6. Has everyone forgotten last year? Today the Dodger’s offense is better in almost every ratio metric than in Mar/Apr last season. Only the Rays are better overall offense this year, and it looks like the Rays have managed to play every game in Denver or Cincinnati against a batting practice pitching machine. Last year every player’s lack of hitting productivity was compensated for by other players. That’s happening so far. Does that mean it will continue? No, but there is no need to panic when individual player offense production hasn’t had time to stabilze.
    Bottom line: The Dodger’s know more than we can about individual players and how the sum of team player skills wins games.


    1. Uh Waldo. We’ve played every game against a batting practice machine as well. It’s what we do in the west division.


      1. He was waiting for the call upstairs to tell him to get the guy hitting under 100 out and put in the guy hitting under 200. LOL


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