While Yimi Garcia is bearing the brunt of the blame in the Los Angeles Dodgers’ loss for blowing a second consecutive save that wasn’t followed by a walk-off hit this time around, the one run they lost by can also be traced back to Adrian Gonzalez’s attempt to steal third base.
Gonzalez led off the seventh hitting by hitting his second double of the night and he was standing on second base with one out, the Dodgers leading 4-2 and Yasmani Grandal at the plate — batting right-handed with lefty Ken Roberts on the mound.
Gonzalez broke for third on Roberts’ first pitch and was thrown out by Nick Hundley on somewhat surprisingly given Gonzalez’s speed, was a close play. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly challenged the ruling to no avail, which has been a recurring theme in recent days.
When asked about the sequence, Mattingly clarified Gonzalez ran on his own accord, which he didn’t take issue with. “I think he just saw something and he actually had it before he stumbled just a touch taking off,” the fifth-year manager said. “It kind of surprised me to be honest, but Adrian has the freedom that we trust him and he really did have that if he doesn’t stumble taking off.
“It’s worth a try, I think it’s a good chance. He basically almost beats it anyway even with that [stumble]. So it basically told him that his instincts were right. He made the right instinctual move and it just didn’t work out in his favor.”
Gonzalez shared a similar view of the play that wound up possibly costing the Dodgers a run as Grandal later singled up the middle. “It’s a situation where we’re up two and I tried to get to third base,” Gonzalez told Alanna Rizzo of Time Warner Cable’s SportsNet LA.
“He [Roberts] was really slow to the plate and he wasn’t paying much attention to me. I hesitated just enough to be out, but if I don’t hesitate, I’m safe easily.” It was just the second time in his career Gonzalez has attempted to steal third, with the first in 2009, and he’s come up dry each time.
Adrian Gonzalez Discusses Approach To Hitting