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By Jon Weisman
With the Dodgers about to play four games in the next two days in two different states, the team emptied its bench and then some today, with a number of minor-leaguers receiving their first (or nearly first) action ever playing for the big-league Dodgers.
Lars Anderson, Ali Solis and Dillon Moyer were among the position players coming off the bench, while Jharel Cotton and Michael Johnson pitched the final two innings. Solis had a seventh-inning sacrifice fly for the Dodgers’ final run of the day and a 7-5 lead.
The 23-year-old Cotton, who had 9.8 strikeouts per nine innings and a 1.16 WHIP for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga last year, pitched a shutout eighth but got in trouble in the ninth, and Johnson couldn’t bail him out.
The result: Two ninth-inning runs by the Angels, a 7-7 final score, and the Dodgers’ improbable, record-setting sixth tie of Spring Training. Los Angeles is 8-3-6.
It was an odd game that saw starting pitcher Brett Anderson allow seven hits to the 12 batters he faced over 1 2/3 innings, only for the Dodgers to quickly rally for five runs in the bottom of the second. Alex Guerrero continued his efforts to make his contract status a moot point, starting a double play from shortstop in the first inning and hitting a three-run homer in the second.
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Andre Ethier, meanwhile, had a single and a double. Joc Pederson and Matt Carson had the Dodgers’ other extra-base hits.
Hard to believe, another tie. A record LA Dodger 6th . Do you know what the all-time record is, Jon?