Zach Davies pitched 6+ innings of shutout ball in which he struck out six batters and allowed only three hits as the Brewers beat the Dodgers 3-0 to avoid the sweep. Eric Thames and Domingo Santana hit solo home runs and Eric Sogard hit an RBI single in the Brewers victory.
Zack Davies kept the Dodgers from doing anything on Sunday afternoon. The closest to a jam that the Dodgers got Davies into came in the top of the seventh inning when they hit back-to-back singles to leadoff the inning. The Brewers’ bullpen, however, used a double play to get Davies out of the inning without any damage done.
Kenta Maeda did not do nearly as well on Sunday, as he needed 92 pitches to pitch only four innings. Kenta took the loss as he allowed two earned runs on two hits with three walks. Maeda did strike out seven batters, but when you combine four walks with seven strikeouts, that is far too many deep counts.
Eric Thames got the Brewers on the board early with a solo home run in the first inning. With a 2-2 count, Grandal gave Maeda a low target for a curveball. The pitch, however, did not break and Thames got his bat on the ball. He drove the ball over the wall in right-center field for a solo home run and the Brewers had a 1-0 lead.
The Brewers added another run against Maeda in the second inning, this time due to an RBI single by Eric Sogard. The Brewers had runners on first and second with two outs in the and no balls and one strike to Sogard. Maeda threw a changeup that tailed back over the plate. Sogard hit it sharply into right field and Manny Piña scored, giving the Brewers a 2-0 lead.
The Brewers added a final insurance run in the eighth inning against Sergio Romo. Domingo Santana was the batter with one out and nobody on base. Just like he usually does, Romo threw a first-pitch slider. The stayed over the plate and Santana drove it past the wall in left-center field and into the bullpen for a solo home run, extending the Brewers’ lead to 3-0.
Keys To The Game:
The only time the Dodgers threatened on Sunday afternoon was in the seventh inning after Adrián González and Cody Bellinger singled to start the inning. After that, the Brewers turned to their bullpen and brought Oliver Drake into the game. He got Yasmani Grandal to ground into a double play, putting an end to the Dodgers’ mini rally.
The Dodgers need more innings out of Kenta Maeda than what he has been giving them. On Sunday, he went only four innings due to a high pitch count. Instead of getting into deep counts, Maeda needs to work on just getting outs. If he can get quicker outs, he will be able to go deeper into games because he innings will require fewer pitches.
The Dodgers will head home for a rematch of the NLDS against the Nationals. Hyun-Jin Ryu will take the mound for Los Angeles and Gio Gonzalez will take the mound for the Nationals. Bryce Harper is appealing his suspension for charging the mound against the Giants, so I am not sure if he will play during the series. The game will start at 7:10 pm PT and be televised on SportsNet LA and ESPN.