Dodgers Lose Despite Another Cuban Debut
The Dodgers, with Michael Young, Scott Van Slyke, Skip Schumaker and Nick Punto in the lineup, did not trot out what would deemed their everyday postseason lineup. That was evident as the Dodgers lost 4-1 to the Arizona Diamondbacks.
"It's just rest," manager Don Mattingly said about the days off for Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier, Juan Uribe and Mark Ellis also noting that he originally also want to get Adrian Gonzalez a day off. Gonzalez doth protested, and Mattingly relented.
Nonetheless it was one of those games. The Dodgers amassed seven basehits through the first six innings off of D-Backs starter Patrick Corbin but still were empty on the scoreboard. It wasn't until Yasiel Puig hit a home run to the back of the Dodger bullpen in the seventh inning did the scoreboard indicate the Dodgers actually put some effort into the game.
"We had a lot of chances," A.J. Ellis said. "We just couldn't get the big hit. Give [Corbin] credit for making the pitches when he had to. I think a lot of us felt like we should have done more damage than we did against him."
This was the first game Ryu Hyun-Jin pitched since August 30 dealing with some back issues in the interim. No one was using that as an excuse for him giving up three runs in the first two innings.
"He was okay, really," Mattingly said. "He throws the ball around the plate, he's going to give up some hits. As we see with Hyun-Jin, he's a guy who knows what he's doing. He pitches out of trouble. This guy can pitch."
Ryu did get out of trouble repeatedly after the second innings despite giving up 10 hits in this six innings of work.
The other news of the day was a Cuban player not named Yasiel Puig. The Dodgers purchased the contract of left-handed pitcher Onelki Garcia from Triple-A Albuquerque. To make room on the 40-man roster for the 24-year old, the Dodgers placed Shawn Tolleson on the 60-day disabled list.
Garcia, drafted in the third round in the 2012 draft by the Dodgers, besides getting experience will serve to protect the amount of innings that Paco Rodriguez and J.P. Howell have worked.
"We talked about our two lefties aren't really power lefties," manager Don Mattingly explained. "The power guys seem to get stronger as the season goes. The finesse guys you worry about. We've used J.P. and Paco. Anybody that pitches that good seems to get regular work. Onelki will hopefully be able to take a little pressure off of those guys as far as usage."
Garcia came into the game in the ninth inning and walked pinch-hitter Adam Eaton on four pitches which sent Mattingly to mound to pull him in favor of Peter Moylan.
"I felt the emotions of my first time in the Major Leagues," Garcia said, his head still swimming from the appearance despite the disappointment from not getting the out.
Garcia also became the first player in Dodger history to wear the number 98. "When I first played in a traveling tournament for the Cuban boy's national team in Mexico, that's the number I was given. When I saw the number was available here, I was happy to take it."
Garcia seemed unaware he was the first Dodger to wear the number. When I told him he was the first, he laughed. "Gracias. Gracias."
Matt Kemp remains at the Dodgers facility in Glendale, Ariz. taking at-bats in simulated games. After the setback with his hamstring, Mattingly reported that this was his first day running with 80% body weight on the anti-gravity treadmill. "He was running good," Mattingly said.
There is no timetable for Kemp to start running the bases, but Mattingly was still very optimistic Kemp would be back in time for the final ten games of the season. Does he think it's a reality. "I'm hoping," he responded. "We think it is."
Diamondbacks Scorecard: (click to embiggen)
Dodgers Scorecard: (click to embiggen)