The Dodgers beat the Toronto Blue Jays Wednesday night 8-3 with a five-run tenth inning to cap off not only an incredible night, but an incredible road trip. L.A. has won all six of their games since the All-Star break, but also have a 10-game road winning streak (best since 1955), propelling them into first place in the National League West.
The team’s blitz on offense was the highlight of the series. The Dodgers scored 32 total runs in the series including a season high 14 on Monday.
Tuesday’s game featured an improbable comeback from an 8-3 deficit highlighted by Adrian Gonzalez’s go-ahead three-run blast in the 8th inning.
No need to assign grades here, just take a look at some of the stats for the regulars in the series:
Adrian Gonzalez: 4-12, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 6 runs scored, 5 BB
Hanley Ramirez: 4-15, 2 2Bs, 5 runs scored
Andre Ethier: 8-16, 1 HR, 5 2Bs, 5 RBI, 5 runs scored
Yasiel Puig: 6-13, 1 HR, 1 2B, 3 RBI, 4 runs scored
Carl Crawford: 6-17, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 2 runs scored
Mark Ellis: 5-14, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 2 runs scored
A.J. Ellis: 5-13, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 3 runs scored
Offense was not hard to come by in hitter friendly Rogers Centre. For Dodgers fans not used to seeing the Blue Jays, it was definitely a different look seeing games played on astro-turf.
Balls dart through the infield and outfielders have to play farther back to protect against high bounces off the turf. This came into play Wednesday night when Andre Etheir stroked the ball into shallow center and Colby Rasmus misread it. It bounced over his head and the Dodgers tied the game with two out in the ninth.
All of the Dodgers regulars made contributions across the board in the series and the team is clicking on all cylinders right now, logging double digit hits in five straight games.
Here are how the other grades broke down:
The Dodgers bullpen also played a key role in winning the series. Excluding Carlos Marmol’s disastrous Dodgers’ debut Tuesday night, the rest of the ‘pen gave up only three runs in 11 innings of work in the series.
Kenley Jansen recorded his 12th save of the year, and to show you just how much the Dodgers fortunes have changed over the last month, Brandon League picked up back-to-back wins in the series. While being used in low pressure situations, League has started to regain some of his lost form. Since July 4 League has lowered his ERA from 6.37 to 5.45.
The Dodgers had to give Marmol a test run and now Don Mattingly knows not to use him in pressure situations.
STARTING PITCHING: C
The starting pitchers had mixed results. Hyun-Jin Ryu earned his eighth victory of the year Monday night, but he wasn’t stellar, giving up four earned runs in 5 1/3 innings of work. Ryu has been brilliant at Dodger Stadium this year (1.90 ERA), but it’s not been an easy go of things on the road (4.62 ERA).
Tuesday was a rough day for Chris Capuano. Capuano surrendered five runs and seven hits in only 4 1/3 inning and left the game trailing 5-2. Capuano has been inconsistent, but we’ll chalk this one up to a good offensive team in a hitters’ park.
Ricky Nolasco had arguably the best start for the Dodgers in the series. He pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing only two earned runs, while striking out five and walking four. Not Cy Young material but enough to get the job done, especially with the team scoring runs in droves they way the have been.
The Dodgers will return home and kick off a four-game series with the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday. Cincinnati has the third best record in the National League, but they’re in third place in the NL Central, five games behind the St. Louis Cardinals.
Led by All-Stars Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips, the Reds have the second best offense in the NL scoring 4.4 runs per game. The Reds just took three of four from the Giants at AT&T Park, scoring 35 runs in the series.