Streaks were never intended to last forever, so the Dodgers will happily take the way their run of starting pitchers giving up two or fewer walks came to an end Sunday.
Officially the streak ends at 39 consecutive games -- the longest in baseball history since 1900 by three games -- after Josh Beckett issued three walks to the Colorado Rockies.
But since Beckett threw five scoreless innings in the Dodgers’ 8-2 victory over the Rockies, safe to say nobody was too upset. The victory kept the Dodgers half a game ahead of the Giants in the National League West.
Beckett threw only 82 pitches in his five innings, but there was no word whether he was injured. Manager Don Mattingly said he has been trying to treat Beckett gingerly after he missed most of last season following a unique surgery that removed a rib.
In his five sharp innings, Beckett (6-5) gave up three hits and three walks, struck out two and dropped his earned-run average to 2.26 -- third lowest in the NL.
Sunday’s game was scoreless when the Dodgers pushed five runs across against Colorado’s Yohan Flande, a 28-year-old rookie left-hander from the Dominican Republic.
Beckett, who had two unlikely doubles in his last start, doubled with one out to begin Flande’s trouble Sunday. Those are the only doubles Beckett has pulled off this season in 37 at-bats. Dee Gordon singled Beckett to third and Yasiel Puig walked to load the bases for Adrian Gonzalez.
Gonzalez promptly sent a two-run single to center field to break the scoreless deadlock. Gonzalez leads the Dodgers with 55 RBIs.
Matt Kemp followed with a run-scoring single and Scott Van Slyke walked, loading the bases again to end the day for Flande. Reliever Brooks Brown got Juan Uribe to bounce to Nolan Arenado, who fielded it and fired home to catcher Wilin Rosario. Initially Gonzalez was called out, but a replay review revealed Rosario missing the tag, the call was overturned and the Dodgers had a fourth run.
That still left the bases loaded, so when Miguel Rojas was hit by a pitch another run scored and the Dodgers were up, 5-0.
Rojas ended up leaving the game with a bruised forearm. The Dodgers already have three middle infielders on the disabled list. He had X-rays on the arm but they were negative.
Chris Perez, who’s been pitching like he wants off the team, took over in the sixth inning and gave up a run on two singles, a stolen base and a walk.
The Dodgers put the game away with three more runs in the eighth inning. Carlos Triunfel, just brought back up Sunday, took over for Rojas and walked to lead off the inning. Clint Robinson singled Triunfel to second and newly minted starting All-Star outfielder Puig doubled in one.
A groundout by Gonzalez scored Robinson and a single by Kemp scored Puig. Kemp went four for five with two RBIs to put the Dodgers ahead, 8-1.
The Dodgers took three of four from the Rockies and increased their major league-best road record to 29-17. They are now 6-0-1 in their last seven road series.