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Dodgers’ Bats Come Alive in a Much Needed Win Over the Reds

Dodgers
Sep 12, 2018; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Manny Machado (8) tags out Cincinnati Reds right fielder Scott Schebler (43) at second base in the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The first two games of the series in Cincinnati left Dodgers fans with a terrible sinking feeling. A team that can’t beat one of the lesser teams in baseball doesn’t stand a chance in the playoffs. That is the exact thought that made Wednesday morning’s game feel like a must-win game. And on a day where the bullpen was expected to carry the load, that certainly looked to be a tall task.

Ross Stripling took the hill in his first start since August 9th. Dave Roberts said before the game that his pitch limit would be somewhere around 3 innings or 45 pitches. He ended up going 3 1/3 and throwing 51 pitches, so a little over what they had expected from him. The game went to the bullpen from there.

Zac Rosscup took over in the fourth inning and was perfect. He has not allowed a run in his last seven appearances out of the Dodgers’ bullpen now. Caleb Ferguson followed that up with a three-strikeout inning, allowing a triple to Billy Hamilton in the process. Dylan Floro came on for the sixth inning and pitched had his own perfect appearance. Pat Venditte tossed 2/3 of an inning before being relieved by Josh Fields.

Fields threw 1 1/3 innings and was perfect. He struck out one and induced a few easy popups to glide through his appearance. Julio Urias was briefly up and ready to throw in the bullpen, but Roberts elected to give Jansen the ninth inning. Jansen had not thrown in a week since he did not make the trip to Colorado, and they wanted him game-ready for St Louis. Jansen did not allow a runner to reach in the ninth.

The Offense

The bats came to play in this one, despite getting off to a very slow start. In fact, the Dodgers did not record their first hit until the fourth inning. Joc Pederson got things going with a solo homerun in the fourth to tie things up. The Dodgers would add another one in the inning to take the lead on a fan interference call. Yasmani Grandal had hit one that was going high off of the wall, but a kid snagged it and the umpires rewarded Muncy home plate.

The offense poured it on in the fifth, adding four runs on three hits to extend their lead. They pretty much kept the hits coming for the rest of the game but managed to score just two more in the sixth.  Grandal finished the day with three hits and three runs driven in. He was one of two Dodgers to have three hits in this one, the other being Yasiel Puig.

Looking Ahead

The Dodgers head to St Louis to play a very tough Cardinals team in a four-game series. Clayton Kershaw will get the start on Thursday and he has pitched well as of late. Over his last nine starts, Kershaw has pitched to a 2.04 earned run average. He has also struck out 56 batters and walked four in that span. The Cardinals have won just five out of their last ten games.

[button color=”red” size=”big” alignment=”center” rel=”follow” openin=”samewindow” url=”http://www.dodgersnation.com/corey-seager-ill-be-ready-to-go-in-2019-ce1110/2018/09/11/”]Corey Seager Confident He Will Be Ready in 2019[/button]

Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. I hope the Dodgers can continue to put the ball in play and score runs against the Cardinals and also Alex “Solid” Wood (57) needs bring his best! “Let’s Go LA Dodgers!!!

  2. 1. Message to Brook: Finally, in a recent post, you criticized the bullpen and front office, which I have been doing all year. If we don’t make the postseason this year, most of the blame rests on those two aspects of the organization.
    2. The next 4 games against the hated (by me) Cardinals are crucial. We have to prove we can beat them. (Prediction: they are going to the NLCS, as I still have hope the Dodgers are.

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