Rich Hill made his return to the mound on Thursday night, but it didn’t turn out as expected. Hill never made it out of the first inning as his knee buckled, causing him to close command, forcing him to exit with just 2 outs in the first.
“We hadn’t had any signs of that leading up to this outing,” said manager Dave Roberts. “You could see some time after that second hitter, it just started to go down as far as velocity, command. You could see him compensating a little bit, so we had to get him out.”
Somehow, despite losing their starting pitcher before the first inning ended, the Dodgers still managed to win the ballgame. The Dodger bullpen combined for 8.1 innings, allowing just 1 run on 2 hits.
And then for the offense. It wasn’t the dominant kind of offense we’re used to seeing from the Dodgers. Instead, they relied on two bloop hits and a major Orioles mistake.
In the 6th, the Dodgers once again were trailing by a run, but Bellinger hit a bloop single to left, driving in A.J. Pollock, and tying the game at 2.
After that things got weird. Orioles pitcher, Dylan Bundy walked the next batter, then with two outs, an error loaded the bases. In a 3-2 count with the bases loaded and two outs, Bundy struck out Russell Martin looking to end the inning… or did he?
The ball got away from the catcher, Pedro Severino and rolled to the backstop. Instead of covering home plate, Bundy just stood by the mound and watched as the Dodgers scored two runs and took a 4-2 lead.
The Dodgers are headed to New York for a series against the Mets. I don’t think anyone expected the Mets to still be in the wild card race at this point, but here they are. They trail the Cubs and Brewers by 2 games in the race for the wild card game.
Clayton Kershaw and Noah Syndergaard will face off at Citi Field on Friday night. Kershaw is 13-5 on the year with a 3.06 ERA but he’s allowed a combined 11 runs in his last 3 starts. Syndergaard is 10-7 with a 4.06 ERA. The game will begin at 4:10 pm.