The Dodgers continued their streaky, befuddling play, being held to a run and nine hits in the first two games of the series against the Colorado Rockies, before finally breaking out for a 6-4 win Wednesday night. Although the Dodgers won the series finale, they blew an opportunity to possibly move ahead of the Giants and further distance themselves from the Arizona Diamondbacks, by losing two of three at home to the 2nd worst team in baseball. The Blue Crew featured strong pitching all around in the series, but the offense was completely anemic until Wednesday.
Other than some great production from Mark Ellis, it was a rather lackluster series for the Dodgers infield. A.J. Ellis and Matt Treanor combined to go 0-for-8 in the series. A.J. drew three walks in the series, and Treanor scored a run on Wednesday. It was an emotional evening on Wednesday for Treanor as his wife, Misty May-Treanor, won a gold medal in beach volleyball with her long time doubles partner Kerri Walsh-Jennings. It was the third consecutive gold for May-Treanor and Walsh-Jennings. Hanley Ramirez also struggled in the series, going 2-for-11, and collecting an RBI Wednesday while scoring the Dodgers’ lone run on Tuesday. Third base continued to be an offensive wasteland for the Dodgers, Jerry Hairston, Jr. and Luis Cruz combined to go 0-for-11 in the series. Juan Rivera didn’t do much better at 1B going 1-for-10. The lone bright spot on the Dodgers’ infield was 2B Mark Ellis who was 3-for-5 in the series. Ellis had a pinch-hit RBI double to drive in the Dodgers’ only run on Tuesday, and he was 1-for-1 with 3 BB’s and another RBI on Wednesday.
It took a couple of games, but Shane Victorino finally broke out with the Dodgers, and Matt Kemp started driving the ball again. Victorino had his best series with the Dodgers and his best game since coming over from Philly on Wednesday. Victorino was 6-for-15 in the series, including 3-for-5 with and RBI and three runs scored in Wednesday night’s victory. Kemp went 4-for-11 in the series. His nine-game hit streak came to an end Tuesday, but after misjudging a deep fly ball off the wall that turned into an inside-the-park home run by Eric Young, Jr., Kemp responded by blasting his 17th home run of the year into the left field seats. Andre Ethier got the day off Monday against lefty Drew Pomeranz. Ethier didn’t tear it up either going 2-for-7, but he collected both hits in Wednesday’s offensive outburst. Dodger fans finally got a glimpse of what it looks like when all three all-star outfielders are producing, and it was pretty sight.
STARTING PITCHERS: B+
The Dodgers starting pitching was strong all-around. Chris Capuano pitched a strong 7.0 innings on Monday surrendering only two runs, but the Dodgers’ offense was blanked and Capuano fell to 10-8 on the year. Aaron Harang pitched a solid 6.0 innings giving up three runs on Tuesday, but again, the Dodgers’ offense would be shut down, and Harang would fall to 7-7. It would be the red-hot Chad Billingsley to the rescue on Wednesday. Billingsley was not as sharp as he had been in his previous three starts, giving up 4 runs in 6 1/3 innings, but with some offensive help from Matt Kemp and Shane Victorino, it was enough to give Billingsley his fourth straight win since coming off the DL. Perhaps it was the time off, perhaps it’s the new beard, but Billingsley is 4-0 with a 2.02 ERA in his last four starts.
The Dodgers bullpen was virtually perfect in the three-game series against the Rockies. Shawn Tolleson pitched a scoreless 8th inning on Monday, and Brandon League, Randy Choate, and Jamey Wright pitched a scoreless ninth. Tolleson, Choate, Wright, and Javy Guerra combined to pitch three scoreless on Tuesday night. And with the lead on Wednesday, Ronald Belisario came in for five outs, and Kenley Jansen pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his 22nd save of the year.
The Dodgers hit the road for the next 10 games, with trips to Miami, Pittsburgh, and Atlanta. The Marlins have fallen out of the playoff race, but the Pirates and Braves are serious contenders. The Marlins are going for a three-game sweep of the New York Mets today, but they currently sit 17 games behind the first place Washington Nationals.
Weekly GPA: 3.00
Cumulative GPA: 2.91