As the Los Angeles Dodgers lost the second game of the three-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates, they need a win on Sunday to avoid being swept. The game was an eventful one, with more than five stoppages of plays to go along with back-and-forth action between the two teams.
Both offenses fought back early on, looking to give their team the lead when both starting pitchers weren’t pitching up to their quality standards. As the game progressed, the fans in attendance got more interested in the outcome, thus promoting a playoff-type intensity that is set for both teams towards the postseason push.
The Pirates’ franchise is in the midst of a renaissance, as are the Dodgers to a certain extent, which is great for Major League Baseball and for fans of the game everywhere. Both ball clubs have solid fan bases and inspiring home crowds, displaying a true vehemence and love for their teams to come out on top.
After the game, catcher A.J. Ellis was asked about the magnitude of the game, via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:
It was one of those days,” said catcher A.J. Ellis. “You’ve got to give the Pirates credit. It was a back-and-forth grind, both teams. You kind of knew early that both starting pitchers weren’t quite on their game; the pitchers’ duel we expected was out the window. I’m really proud of the way we fought these two days.”
Although the Dodgers have dropped the first two games, they still find themselves in a position to end their road trip with a record of 3-3, which would be a better note to end on before they head back to Chavez Ravine.
This stretch of baseball is crucial for the Dodgers, as they will be exposed to a lot of potential postseason matchups that are not from the NL West. Ellis remained optimistic in how his team responded when the game could have blown wide open.
According toBill Plunkett of the O.C. Register, Ellis believes his team has done well, despite the losses:
It’s probably the first time all year we’ve been in a playoff atmosphere, against playoff-caliber pitching,” Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said, squinting to find the bright side. “And we’ve met the challenge.”
Ellis received a start and had the opportunity to work with the newly acquired Mat Latos, to find a groove and attempt to establish a connection between the battery. At the plate, Ellis went 0-for-2, with a walk, before being replaced by Yasmani Grandal.
After the finale against the Pirates on Sunday, the Dodgers return to Dodger Stadium for a three-game set against the Washington Nationals.