Did I forget to add someone to the Disabled List? Oh yeah, I did. That person would be Clayton Kershaw. For the third consecutive season, Kershaw will be hitting the Disabled List. Luckily, this injury isn’t what has normally plagued the Ace pitcher, his lower back, this injury is in his arm. Now you may be saying, “Well Jack aren’t arm injuries worse for a pitcher?”, and then I’ll say that it is only Biceps Tendinitis and nothing severe. That is, unless it evolves into something worse and with this thrill ride of a season so far, what else could go wrong? Fingers crossed that this is a minor two week setback and that Clayton Kershaw will be back in no time.
Speaking of being back in no time, the Dodgers are about to get stronger this week and this month! The following players will come off of the Disabled List this week or the next few weeks: Rich Hill, Yasiel Puig, Logan Forsythe and Justin Turner. Justin Turner is definitely the most missed hitter in the Dodgers lineup. Getting Turner back and 100% would mean a little bit of offensive production from the top of the lineup and possibly the lineup as a whole. Turner is a key piece of that lineup and it has shown how much he means to the Dodgers in his absence.
This past weekend the Los Angeles Dodgers traveled to Monterrey, Mexico to take on the San Diego Padres. This would be the first time in 19 years that there has been a Major League Baseball game played in Mexico. The first game of the series was a remarkable one and the last two were forgettable. The shaky bullpen showed potential but also showed disaster throughout the series. The hitters did what they could but couldn’t come up with any big hits.
Friday night in Monterrey, Mexico started off with Mexican born Fernando Valenzuela throwing out the first pitch. Valenzuela, who threw a No Hitter in 1990, would turn out to be a lucky charm for the Dodgers. The young fireballer, Walker Buehler started the game and pitched six scoreless innings and recorded eight strikeouts. That sounds great right? To top it off, he didn’t allow a single hit. After the sixth inning, Dave Roberts determined that it was time to go to the bullpen. Roberts brought in Tony Cingrani and then Cingrani kept the game going by pitching a scoreless inning with no hits allowed. For the first time in two years, Yimi Garcia pitched for the Dodgers in the eighth inning. The nerves and adrenaline would start to flare up as you hope nothing bad happens. However, Garcia pitched a scoreless inning and struck out two batters. Finally, lefty Adam Liberatore came into the game for the ninth inning. Liberatore, who has been criticized by Dodger fans everywhere this season, pitched a perfect ninth inning and didn’t allow a hit.
The Dodgers had done it! They had just No Hit the San Diego Padres in Monterrey, Mexico! The Combined No Hitter was only the thirteenth in MLB history and was the twenty-third No Hitter in Dodgers Franchise History. Although it is a bigger deal to see one pitcher go the distance, it’s still a great achievement for those four pitchers. Frankly, I don’t think this will be Walker Buehler’s final No Hitter. With his electric arm and amazing stuff, you can bet that he will have another one under his belt in the future.
Right as the game got underway, the Dodgers struck first. Matt Kemp drove in Chris Taylor with an RBI single and the Dodgers took a quick 1-0 lead. Then in the second inning, Chris Taylor launched a Solo Home Run to left field. Immediately after, Kiké Hernandez hit a Solo Home Run for himself! The Dodgers would take a 3-0 lead into the sixth inning when Top Prospect Alex Verdugo singled in Chase Utley to make the game 4-0. That would be all the Dodgers would need to win the game. This win was also their third in a row after beating Arizona the last two games before heading to Mexico.
Saturday and Sunday’s game unfortunately did not go the way the Dodgers had hoped it would.
Japanese Right Hander, Kenta Maeda, started on Saturday and while he didn’t throw a gem, he didn’t get knocked around..too much. Maeda pitched a solid five innings and allowed three earned runs on four hits. In addition to that, Maeda struck out seven batters but only walked one. The major damage came in the first inning when Eric Hosmer hit a 2-Run Home Run off of Maeda and then in the fourth inning when Freddy Galvis drove in a run via Sacrifice Fly.
In the top of the second inning, Matt Kemp sent a ball to straight away center field for his fifth Home Run of the year. Then Chris Taylor would single in that same inning, allowing Max Muncy to score. The game now tied at 2-2, Matt Kemp would come up in the third inning and drive in Cody Bellinger. The Dodgers took the lead but it would eventually vanish.
As I mentioned before, Freddy Galvis hit a Sacrifice Fly that scored Franchy Cordero. This would tie up the game for the time being. In the top of the sixth, with bases loaded, Chris Taylor was hit by the pitch and forced home a run. The Dodgers had retaken the lead once again. That is until the bottom half of the inning when Raffy Lopez hit a 2-Run Home Run off of Josh Fields to take the lead 5-4. This would be the last inning that the Dodgers would score in. Also, this is my example of how the Dodgers bullpen can be amazing one day and then bad the next. In the bottom of the eighth, Chase Headly of all people singled to bring in Franchy Cordero. Then Carlos Asuaje singled to bring in Raffy Lopez. The Dodgers would lose this game by a score of 7-4.
Instead of having Rich Hill start on Sunday, the Dodgers called on Ross Stripling to make the start. This move coincided with placing Clayton Kershaw on the 10-Day Disabled List. Kershaw was supposed to start on Tuesday night back in Los Angeles against the Diamondbacks but instead, the Dodgers pushed back Hill’s activation and will have him start against the Diamondbacks.
Besides Stripling, Garcia and Stewart, the Dodgers pitching was awful on Sunday. Tony Cingrani, who has been a workhorse for the Dodgers so far, came into the game after the fourth inning and gave up a 2-Run Home Run to Eric Hosmer. Just as he did the night before, Hosmer homered with Travis Jankowski on base. Then in the bottom of the seventh, Franchy Cordero singled off of Yimi Garcia to drive in Jankowski. The run wasn’t charged to Garcia though, it was charged to Pedro Baez. That would pretty much seal the deal for the Dodgers. They would lose the game 3-0 and drop to 15-19 on the season.
This week the Dodgers return home to take on one of the hottest teams in baseball, the Arizona Diamondbacks. They will play on Tuesday and Wednesday night. As I said before, Rich Hill will start Tuesday night and Alex Wood will take the mound on Wednesday. Then the Dodgers welcome the Cincinnati Reds this weekend for a four game series. I’d like to say this series will be a no brainer as the Reds are one of the worst teams in baseball, but this is baseball and anything can happen. I mean, the Dodgers lost the series against the Marlins. THE MARLINS!
I’ll be attending both games against the Diamondbacks this week! So far, I’ve been to three Dodger games this year, two in LA and one in San Diego. The Dodgers have only lost one game, Opening Day, and I hope that I can see them win at least one of the two games this week. The highlight of Wednesday night’s game is that it is Justin Turner Bobblehead night! If you’re going, make sure you get their early so you don’t miss getting a great bobblehead. Let’s go Dodgers!