Hyun-Jin Ryu was dominant on the mound, tossing seven shutout innings and allowing only one hit while striking out eight, leading the Dodgers to an 8-0 victory and season sweep of the Mets. The Dodgers gave Ryu run support before he even got a chance to pitch and Justin Turner and Cody Bellinger each hit two-run home runs.
Even after his last start (when he shut out the Giants over seven innings) I did not expect Ryu to be this good during Sunday’s game. From what I saw, Ryu was hitting his target and attacking the zone. There was only hard contact one time against him, Travis d’Arnaud‘s single in the third inning.
“Tonight, Hyun-Jin set the tone,” said Dave Roberts. “From the first pitch to his 90th or whatever [actually 96], he was very aggressive. We talk about having that conviction and attacking the strike zone, which he did with his entire mix. Outside of one hard-hit ball by d’Arnaud, a lot of soft contact.”
If you don’t believe that the Dodgers are amazing, take a look at these numbers. The Dodgers have won 13 of their last 14, 24 of seven since July 4, and 44 of 51 since June 7. They are 47 games above the .500 mark for the first time since 1962. They have won 14 consecutive series and swept 15 series this year. They are on pace to win 115 games and even if they finish the season with 21 wins and 30 losses, they will have 100 wins this year.
Now, let’s see how they did it yesterday. Steven Matz had been dominant against the Dodgers, but things changed last night. With two outs in the first inning, Justin Turner was on first base and he decided to attempt to steal second base. The throw from d’Arnaud was good and Turner was called out. After review, it was ruled that Turner dodged the tag and he was safe.
This kept the inning alive and the Dodgers took advantage of it. Bellinger walked, then the Dodgers put on the double-steal, putting runners on second and third. Logan Forsythe then hit a single into center field and two runs scored, giving the Dodgers a 2-0 lead. That was all the run support that Ryu needed, but the Dodgers didn’t know that. Austin Barnes then hit a curveball down the left field line for a double. Forsythe scored and the Dodgers extended their lead to 3-0.
Just because they can, the Dodgers extended their lead in the third inning. The Dodgers had a runner on first base with no outs and Justin Turner at the plate. Matz threw a fastball much higher than he wanted to. Turner took advantage of it and hit it over the wall in right-center field for a two-run home run. That gave the Dodgers a 5-0 lead.
The Dodgers, who seem to enjoy crushing their opponents, scored once again the eighth inning. The Dodgers had a runner on base for Cody Bellinger with two outs. Josh Smoker threw a fastball right over the heart of the plate and Bellinger said, “Thank you very much.” Actually, Bellinger hit the ball 447 feet away from home plate for his longest home run of the year. The Dodgers had extended their lead to 7-0.
Keys To The Game:
Ignore The Baserunners:
In the first inning, the Dodgers had runners on first and second with two outs and Steven Matz failed to check the runners. That allowed Turner and Bellinger to pull off a double-steal almost unnoticed.
“We had a lot of [scouting] information on that guy [Matz]. He’s real slow, especially on guys that don’t run a lot, like me, and we wanted to take advantage of that,” said Turner, who had two stolen bases entering the game, then stole two more in the first inning.
The double-steal allowed the Dodgers to score two runs on Logan Forsythe’s RBI single. It also led to the Dodgers’ three-run rally in the first inning.
Turner Called Safe:
In the first inning, Justin Turner tried to steal second base but was caught by Travis d’Arnaud, according to second base umpire Will Little. The Dodgers, however, challenged the call and official replay ruled that Turner had avoided the tag. He slid into the base head-first, allowing him to move his arm to avoid the glove of Amed Rosario.
Player Of The Game:
Hyun-Jin Ryu is the player of the game. It was not a hard decision at all. Ryu went out to the mound as if he owned the mound and all of Citi Field. He looked comfortable on the mound and he definitely looked dominant. The Mets only hit came on the only hard-hit ball of the game. Ryu didn’t walk anybody and he struck out eight batters. Ryu now carries a 15-inning shutout streak, one that goes back to his start against the Twins.
The Dodgers have a day to travel to Arizona before a three-game series against the Diamondbacks. Kenta Maeda will get the start for the Dodgers and Zack Godley will pitch for the Snakes. Maeda has a four-game winning streak and is 6-1 in with a 2.15 ERA in his last seven starts. Godley has not allowed a run in his last two starts. The game will start at 6:40 pm PT and be televised on SportsNet LA.