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Groundhog Day at Dodger Stadium
The mercury read 58 degrees to start the Dodgers’ game against the Milwaukee Brewers, weather more appropriate for early February rather than mid-May. And just like Groundhog Day the Dodger offense repeated their ineptitude in their 2-1 loss.
“I think our confidence is down a little bit offensively,” Manager Don Mattingly said. “I don’t know what else to say other than that.”
Honestly, what more can be said? The only productive offense came from Jamey Carroll and Aaron Miles. Against starter Shaun Marcum (W, 5-1) the two led off the fourth inning with back-to-back singles. Carroll scored on Matt Kemp’s sacrifice fly to tie the game 1-1.
Other than that there was a leadoff double in the fifth inning by Jay Gibbons. However any excitement that generated eventually dissipated as he remained at second base when Carroll popped up to the second baseman Rickie Weeks to end the inning.
“We gave ourselves three chances to score a run,” Mattingly said. “We just don’t get that hit. At some point we’re going to have to get that big hit to get us back rolling in the other direction again.”
It seems like a mantra Mattingly chants to the media after games. “We’ve said that a lot this season.”
Oh, let’s not forget about the back-to-back singles by Juan Uribe and James Loney to lead off the bottom of the seventh with the team trailing 2-1. Predictable as ever they were stranded on the bases.
For the sake of fairness, Juan Uribe almost got a solo homer in the second inning if not for the great leaping grab over the left-centerfield wall by Brewers’ centerfielder Carlos Gomez.
I’m not going to say that Jon Garland (L, 1-3) had a masterful outing, but he got the job done giving up only two runs.
“With the way Marcum has been throwing the ball, at the start of the game you knew it was going to be a battle,” Garland said.
Garland battled through his six innings of work allowing seven hits and four walks - including a walk to Marcum in the sixth inning that he said, “It cost me the game.” Corey Hart, who led off the inning with a double, came in to score on Weeks’ single after the Marcum walk.
There was hope in Garland’s voice after the game amazingly enough.
“When you lose it’s tough. Hopefully we can get on track and make a little push and win some games.”
And Garland’s mantra: “You just keep going out there and give the team the best opportunity to win a ballgame.”
For the offense, Mattingly’s sage words: “We need to fight and scratch for every run.”
Oakland Athletics defeat LA Angels 5-4 (10).
Milwaukee Brewers at LA Dodgers. KCAL9, AM 790 KABC.
LA Angels at Oakland Athletics. 7:05 p.m. FSWest, AM 830 KLAA.