Dodgers Actually Manage To Win After A 13 Run Lead – 5/8/21
The first game against the Angels was an embarrassing one. Starter Julio Urías and reliever Joe Kelly both got hit around hard. The Dodgers couldn’t hit with RISP and lost the game 9-2. In tonight’s game, they came out looking like the team we’ve all been waiting for. Kershaw was pitching on short rest for the first time, and he did not disappoint. He came out of the game with a 13 run lead. Then came the bullpen…
Kershaw Starts Off Hot
After going only one inning in his outing against the Cubs on Tuesday, Kershaw came out ready to show that was only one bad outing. He faced the top of the Angels lineup with two of the best hitters in Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout. Clayton set them down on 12 pitches, with Trout going down looking. Kershaw went on to sit down the first nine hitters he faced on 36 pitches.
After sitting for 40 minutes in the top of the fourth, Kershaw gave up a lead off base hit to Fletcher for the first Angels hit of the game. He struck out Ohtani, but Trout singled, putting runners on the corners with one out. Kershaw then induced Upton into an inning-ending double play, stranding the only two Angels base runners to that point. Kershaw’s only walk came in the bottom of the fifth to lead off the inning. He retired the next three, stranding the runner and ending his night on the mound.
Kershaw looked like he was trying to plead his case to Roberts in the dugout to head out for another inning, but Roberts wasn’t about to let that happen. With as many injuries as we’ve had to start the season, I’m right there with Roberts and not wanting to push Kershaw. He only threw 76 pitches, but there was no reason to leave him in there with such a huge lead. Dodgers had the arms that could finish this off without having to stress much. Or at least that’s what we were all hoping for.
The Bats Roar To Life
Dodgers got their first base runner when Mookie Betts led off the fourth with a walk, and Corey Seager singled, putting runners on the corners with nobody out. With one out, Max Muncy stepped to the plate and fouled a ball down the line that José Rojas grabbed at third and tagged Mookie in a very, very unfortunate place, causing a delay in the game but giving everybody a good laugh. Shortly after, Muncy and Will Smith hit back-to-back singles driving in a pair and giving the Dodgers a 2-0 lead.
Chris Taylor’s base hit set up Matt Beaty with the bases loaded. Beaty doubled, driving in two more, and the Dodgers had an early 4-0 lead in the fourth. The Angles intentionally walked Lux to load the bases for Barnes, who drove home a run on an infield base hit. Betts, who led the inning , got a second AB and plated two more runs with a base hit to right field. Dodgers led 7-0. Seager quickly made it 8-0 with his second hit of the inning.
You can rewatch the explosive inning here.
After a huge fourth inning, the Dodgers were right back at it again in the fifth. Taylor and Beaty both drew walks to put on the first two runners of the inning. Mookie singled with two outs, driving in two more for his third and fourth RBIs of the game and putting the Dodgers on top 10-0. Seager singled, keeping the inning alive for Justin Turner, who doubled home, Betts. Muncy drew a walk passing the baton to Smith with two outs now. Smith kept the hit party going when his single dropped into right, and two more came across to score, giving the Dodgers a 13-0 lead.
A Shutout Implodes
With a 13-0 lead and Kershaw’s day over, Dennis Santana took over in the sixth inning. He walked the leadoff guy before getting Fletcher to ground out. But things quickly went off the rails for him as he gave up three hits and a walk without retiring another hitter. His day ended, and Mitch White took over on the mound. He walked the first hitter he faced and then gave up a sac fly before retiring Rojas to end the inning. Dodgers still led 13-4. Dodgers added another run in the seventh when Peters doubled for his first big league hit, and Muncy drove him home with a base hit.
White came out again in the seventh and retired the first two hitters of the inning. What should’ve been a ground ball to end the inning ended up being an error on Barnes at second base (yes, you read that correctly), allowing Ohtani to reach. With a 14-4 lead in the seventh, Roberts made many defensive changes getting the starters like Betts, Seager, and Turner out of the game to keep them healthy. Unfortunately, that’s when things started to spiral. White gave up five straight hits, and the Angels were all of a sudden only trailing 14-8. His night ended, and Cleavinger came in with runners on the corners and two outs. Cleavinger gave up a three-run shot to Rojas, and now the game was 14-11 Dodgers. It went from a feeling of “The Dodgers are back! We’ve got this in the bag!” to “Oh my god, it’s happening again…”
Eeking Out A Win (After A 13 Run Lead)
The bullpen was a disaster tonight, and I’m not even sure that st enough. With a shutout 13 run lead, you expect no reason for the game to even get remotely close again. Unfortunately, with all of the injuries in the bullpen, there aren’t really any other options to replace Santana, White, and Cleavinger. Until guys get healthy or Friedman makes a trade, it seems like the Dodgers will have to try and make these three arms work.
González got the 8th inning and gave the Dodgers their first 1-2-3 inning since the third inning. Treinen came out in the 9th and shut things down, notching his first save of the season. It wasn’t pretty, but the Dodgers got the job done and ended their four-game losing streak with a 14-11 win over the Angels. They’ll look to make it two straight wins tomorrow and hopefully pick up their first series win since April 17 against the Padres.
First pitch tomorrow is at 1:07 PM PDT.
To read about last night’s not-so-close game, click here.