There are worse ways to lose a game, not that any would make the Dodgers feel any better about the way they fell, 3-2, to the Philadelphia Phillies in 10 innings Tuesday.
It wasn’t looking like their sharpest performance of the year, but they had managed to scrape back to tie it and force their fifth extra-inning affair in 21 games.
With one out in the 10th, Carlos Ruiz hit a high pop-up to shallow left field. Shortstop Hanley Ramirez retreated, left-fielder Carl Crawford moved in. And you can guess where this is going.
Neither clearly appeared to call for it, but as Ramirez started to camp under it, Crawford charged in. The ball hit the glove of Crawford just before the two collided, and fell to the ground.
Ruiz ended up at second, with the error charged to Crawford. Domonic Brown quickly followed with a line-drive double off J.P. Howell to drive in Ruiz with the go-ahead run.
Tuesday marked the sixth time in eight games the Dodgers have scored two or fewer runs. Their lead in the National League West was cut to half a game over the Colorado Rockies.
Hyun-Jin Ryu and A.J. Burnett were locked in a scoreless duel through four innings when the Phillies broke the deadlock with two runs in the fifth.
Burnett started the rally with a leadoff single. Ryu never could figure out Burnett, who finished with a career-high three singles. Ben Revere followed with a base hit, and after Jimmy Rollins lined out to left, Marlon Byrd doubled to drive in Burnett.
It was the first run Ryu had given up after 18 consecutive scoreless innings.
Revere went to third on the double and then tagged and scored on a Ryan Howard drive to medium-shallow left field. Revere showed no fear of Crawford’s arm, scoring easily.
The Dodgers got one run back in the bottom of the inning after Tim Federowicz led off with a double and a Ryu bunt sacrificed him to third. Crawford flied out deep enough to center to sacrifice Federowicz home without a throw.
Ryu left after the sixth, having allowed two runs on nine hits and two walks (one intentional). He struck out three. It wasn’t exactly Ryu at his best, but he was still very solid.
The Dodgers tied it in the seventh thanks almost exclusively to the speed of Dee Gordon.
Gordon started it off with looping a routine single into right-center field. Only this being Gordon there was nothing routine about it. He rounded first on the fly and steamed toward second. Byrd fielded the hit cleanly and threw to second, but too late to nab the speedy Gordon.
Gordon, celebrating his 26th birthday, then stole third. He paid a price, however. He went in with a headfirst slide, his helmet flying off his head. He was safe, but his head hit the left knee of third baseman Jayson Nix.
Gordon was visited by trainer Stan Conte, but remained in the game and scored the tying run when pinch-hitter Justin Turner bounced a single in the hole between third and short.
That ended the night for Burnett, who was charged with two runs, six hits and a walk. He struck out five in 6-2/3 innings.
Gordon left the game at the end of the inning, but remained in the dugout with Turner taking over a second.