Dodgers strike the Jolly Roger with a great deal of trouble

At first, the Dodgers looked helpless. Five of the first six batters struck out against Pirates rookie Brandon Cumpton. Clayton Kershaw gave up a run in the first when he gave up a double, two walks, and Hanley Ramirez airmailed a double play relay throw to let a run score.

But things got better in the fifth when Skip Schumaker singled home A.J. Ellis. The Dodgers drove Cumpton out of the game with two runs in the sixth.

They took a 3-1 lead to the eighth (thanks in part to Schumaker robbing Russell Martin of a 3-run homer in the 6th). Don Mattingly turned the game over to Chris Withrow. Because the other options weren’t much better.

After giving up a single and a walk, Withrow struck out Gaby Sanchez and Martin. Mattingly then opted to put switch hitter Neil Walker on his weaker side and brought in Paco Rodriguez. Walker singled in a run to make it 3-2, but that was it.

In the 9th, it was time for Kenley Jansen to close it out. Except for the pesky fact of Travis Snider tying the game with a home run. And so they played on.

In the bottom of the 10th, Peter Moylan retired the first two batters, but walked Martin and gave up a double to Walker. Martin held at third despite a less than accurate throw home by Yasiel Puig in right. After an intentional walk, pinch hitter Michael McKenry flied out.

The Dodgers hadn’t had anyone reach base since the sixth, but Andre Etheir led off the 11th with a double. Mark Ellis sacrificed because that’s what you do I guess. Juan Uribe singled home Ethier. After a wild pitch, Uribe came home with two outs on a pinch double by Nick Punto.

And now it was time for the Return of the Closer: Brandon League. Snider led off with an infield single. Alex Presley grounded into a force play as Ramirez couldn’t make the relay throw again. Jordy Mercer singled. Dodgers fans sighed. Others cowered in fear.

League threw a wild pitch, putting the tying runs in scoring position.

Dodgers fans started to ask if they could get overnight shipping from Amazon on some strychnine.

Andrew McCutchen grounded out to third.

Some people hit “cancel order” with Amazon.

Sanchez hit a liner to left that Schumaker tracked down and all was well in Dodgerdom for a day. Moylan picked up the first win by an Aussie pitcher for the Dodgers since Luke Prokopec on September 20, 2001.

Zack Greinke versus 2011 #1 overall pick Gerrit Cole Sunday afternoon. And later on Sunday, Cole’s alma mater, UCLA, takes on LSU in the College World Series in Omaha.

There’s an 80% chance of rain tomorrow in Pittsburgh. Plan accordingly.

  • Anonymous

    Wonderful and witty recap, Bob. Thank you.

  • Anonymous

    Missed most of today’s game, but this summary has kept me from missing-missing it, so thanks! Glad we pulled off a win.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kmt59 KT

    traveling up to LA tomorrow for Father’s day so I’ll miss the chat though I’ll watch the game later on my DVR…So hold down the fort for me

  • https://www.facebook.com/kmt59 KT

    Hanley not wearing protection took this one full on:
    http://twitter.com/PA_Dodger/status/346077456098291712/photo/1

  • Anonymous

    Droll as always, Bob. Hey, I recently found out you work (or worked) with my tangential amigesse Stella at the biblio! She’s wonderful! I photographed her wedding…

  • Anonymous

    Good to see the Aussie get the win!

  • Anonymous

    Hernandez–thought good enough to bat cleanup, not good enough to keep on team.

    Ethier playing CF as if it were his natural position. Teams needing a CFer might be interested in him as a CFer that were not interested in him as a RFer.

    I remain willing to trade Gonzales for Headley with Rameriz moved to 1st and playing Headley at third.

    • foul tip

      Didn’t Ethier spend a good bit of time in CF in the minors?

      • Anonymous

        no he didn’t; a good bit in his first pro season 2003; 2004 info NA on b-r; 2005 just a bit not a good bit. By May of 2006 he is the regular LF on the Dodgers

  • Anonymous

    I pulled out after the 8th yesterday (and not because I was confident of a win). Just wondering what happened in the bottom of the 11th. I assume the infield was playing back, so why didn’t the Pirates score on McCuthen’s ground out to third?

    • Anonymous

      They had nothing big to gain by any risk – they needed another big hit to win in any event.

      • Anonymous

        If I were Hurdle, I would have banked on another WP.

        • Anonymous

          Even then, the runner on second wouldn’t have made it to third.

    • https://www.facebook.com/kmt59 KT

      hit too hard right at Uribe…the runner would have been out

      • Anonymous

        Got it.

  • Anonymous

    Yesterday was the most unsatisfying Dodger victory of the year, but I’m not throwing it back.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kmt59 KT

    Remember early start time today:

    Dodgers Lineup:
    Schumaker 7,
    Punto 4,
    Gonzalez 3,
    Puig 9,
    Ethier 8,
    Uribe 5,
    Federowicz 2,
    Cruz 6,
    Greinke 1

    • https://www.facebook.com/kmt59 KT

      too bad I’ll be on the road up to LA when it starts

    • Anonymous

      Breakfast at PCN.

      • Anonymous

        Weirdly, a guy at the library on Wednesday kept asking me where the nearest PCN bank was. It is PNC though. I don’t think you’re that guy.
        It’s raining a lot in Pittsburgh now.

        • Anonymous

          Ha, I may be dumb, but weird I am not, so I am thinking that I wasn’t that guy (but this is just an educated guess).

  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    New post up top.