After one start as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Mat Latos had to be feeling pretty good, shutting down the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim to the tune of one run in six innings.
Now after his second start as a member of the Dodgers, he has some work to do. Latos went just four innings and allowed six runs on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Pirates in a game the NL West leaders lost, 6-5. The biggest blow came off the bat of opposing pitcher Francisco Liriano, who hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the second inning. It was Liriano’s first career home run and looked more lucky than planned. Either way, Latos struggled and the Dodgers couldn’t recover.
According to JP Hoornstra of the LA Daily News, the right-hander had no excuses for his poor outing:
I kept leaving the ball over the middle of the plate,” he said. “Everything – fastball, slider, curveball, changeup – everything. Leave the ball over the middle of the plate to good hitters, you pay the price.”
It was Latos’ worst start in a month, as he had gone five starts in a row that lasted at least six innings with three runs or less allowed. Earlier in the year, when the former Miami Marlin struggled it was found out to be because of a nagging knee injury.
However, Latos wasn’t going to let that be a reason this time:
Didn’t have a feel for my slider,” he said. “It had nothing to do with my knee, nothing to do with anything else. Just a matter of having a bad day.”
The 27-year-old’s next start is scheduled for Thursday against one of his former teams, the Cincinnati Reds. Latos will be looking to avenge his latest start.