Kenta Maeda allowed five runs (two earned) on five hits over just 2.2 innings and the Dodgers were unable to complete a comeback as the Diamondbacks beat the Dodgers by a final score of 8-7. Daniel Descalso hit a home run and drove in four runs and Nick Ahmed hit a solo home run.
The Diamondbacks took advantage of a leadoff walk in the first inning to take an early lead. After Maeda walked the leadoff man, David Peralta, Descalso then hit a fastball into left field for an RBI single. At this point, Dodgers’ radio play-by-play announcer, Charlie Steiner, informed us that the Dodgers were 0-6 when the opposition scored first. They’re now 0-7.
Chris Taylor gave Dodger fans some hope, however, in the bottom of the first. He hit a 2-1 fastball into the left-field pavilion for a home run. The homer tied the game at one. Sadly, the Dodgers were unable to score more in the first, despite a single by Cody Bellinger and Yasmani Grandal being hit by a pitch.
After throwing a 1-2-3 second inning, Maeda absolutely blew it in the third. He issued a leadoff walk to the traitor, Zack Greinke, then allowed a single to Peralta. The D-backs then gave the Dodgers a golden opportunity to get out of the inning. Maeda, however, totally messed it up. Ketel Marte hit a ball right back to Maeda. All he had to do was turn around and throw the ball to second base. Instead, he threw the ball way too far to the right of the base. Corey Seager couldn’t stay on the base and catch the ball, so the Dbacks loaded the bases.
If Maeda had succeeded in his attempt to start the double play, he would have got out of the inning after the next batter. However, he only had one out with the bases loaded when he was facing Descalso. Maeda then threw a wild pitch and Greinke scored. A few pitches later, Grandal was unable to catch another pitch, allowing Peralta to score. Descalso then hit a sacrifice fly, followed by an RBI double by Chris Owings. Jarrod Dyson then hit an RBI double. That was the end of Maeda’s leash.
Bellinger got the Dodgers within three runs with a solo homer in the bottom of the sixth with a solo homer. He ambushed a fastball from Greinke and drove it into the Dbacks’ bullpen.
The Dbacks then retaliated with two runs, courtesy of the new Dodger-killer, Daniel Descalso. Former Dodger-killer, Paul Goldschmidt, hit a two-out single against Tony Cingrani. Descalso then hit a home run halfway up the right-field pavilion, extending the Dbacks’ lead to 7-2.
The Dodgers then battled back in the bottom of the seventh inning, with back-to-back-to-back RBI singles by Taylor, Seager, and Matt Kemp. This brought the Dodgers within two runs of the Dbacks.
As you may have already figured out, Friday the 13th was a very unlucky day for the Dodgers. In the eighth inning, Nick Ahmed hit a solo home run to extend the Dbacks’ lead to 8-5. The ball went right over the glove of Kemp, who crashed into the wall in his attempt to save the Dodgers.
The Dodgers showed they had a little fight left in them in the eighth inning. They loaded the bases with one out, then Chase Utley hit one of the luckiest singles I’ve ever seen. The ball appeared to be a double-play ball, but it hit second base and bounced into left field. Two runs scored and the Dodgers were within a run. Taylor then grounded into a double play to kill the Dodgers’ hopes.
Keys To The Game:
Leadoff Walks Kill:
Kenta Maeda issued two leadoff walks and they both scored. When a pitcher walks the leadoff man of an inning, he is giving the opponent a free runner on first base to begin the inning. Teams usually are able to take advantage of this.
A Costly Error:
Kenta Maeda had an opportunity to avoid a disastrous third inning, but he failed. With no outs, Ketel Marte hit a comebacker to him. Maeda could have thrown to third to get the lead runner out. Instead, he threw to second. There is nothing wrong with throwing to second. In fact, he should have had a double play. But his throw was only in the general area around second base and the only way Seager to catch the ball was to come off the base. This loaded the bases with no outs.
Don’t Backhand the Ball:
My coach is always telling my team’s catcher, don’t backhand balls in the dirt. Catchers need to get their bodies in front of balls in the dirt to keep them from getting away. In the third inning, Yasmani Grandal tried to backhand a ball in the dirt. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the ball got away from him. This gave the Dbacks a run.
Rich Hill will try to ty the series at one game apiece tonight at Dodger Stadium. He will be opposed by Taijuan Walker. In order for the Dodgers to have a chance at winning, Hill needs to pitch a scoreless first inning. The game will begin at 6:10 pm and it will be televised on SportsNet LA.