The Los Angeles Dodgers went into the All-Star break at 47-47 and started the second half of the year in Washington to take on the Nationals. They remained 2.5 games behind the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League West.
The game was close and deadlocked at two heading into the ninth inning, prompting the Nationals to bring in their closer, Rafael Soriano. Outfielder Andre Ethier led things off for the Dodgers, who were trying to get above .500 and keep their hot streak alive. On the fifth pitch of the at-bat, Ethier sent the Soriano pitch over the right field wall to give the team a 3-2 that it wouldn’t relinquish. Closer Kenley Jansen came in to finish things off and threw a perfect ninth inning to give the Dodgers the victory.
Ricky Nolasco made his second consecutive start for the Dodgers, because of the break and went 5.1 innings while allowing two runs. He struggled a bit, giving up eight hits and walking two while earning a no-decision. The right-hander lowered his ERA to 3.75 on the season. One of the runs came on a wild pitch that allowed Nationals’ outfielder Bryce Harper to score. An Ian Desmond single brought in another run in the sixth before he was pulled for reliever Jose Dominguez.
The Dodger offense came on two swings, the deciding hit by Ethier in the ninth and a two-run blast by Hanley Ramirez in the top of the third. The home run came after an Adrian Gonzalez single with two outs in the inning. Nationals’ starter Stephen Strasburg went seven innings allowing the two runs while Gonzalez and Juan Uribe each had two hits apiece for the Dodgers.
The win pushed the Dodgers to 48-47 and within 1.5 games of the Diamondbacks for first place.
Ethier’s 9th Inning Blast To Give The Dodgers The Lead