Mike Bolsinger had to leave his last start because of food poisoning. On Sunday, the New York Mets had him feeling sick again.
Physically, Bolsinger was fine. His mechanics were solid, he said. His stomach was no longer bothering him. His pitches were doing what they were supposed to do.
But time and time again, New York poked holes in the Dodgers defense with well-placed ground balls, leaving Bolsinger frustrated and upset.
The Mets touched Bolsinger for four runs on nine hits and two walks, sending nine batters to the plate in a three-run fourth inning en route to an 8-0 victory. It was in the fourth, he said, that his emotions got the best of him.
"It just felt like everything was going toward their way. It was tough. I can definitely do better with my demeanor on the mound," Bolsinger said. "It's just the little things. I can take someone ripping a ball off the wall off me, or something like that. But to give up hits that way, those are the kinds of things that get me."
His final stat line, however, doesn't tell the whole story, Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly said.
"I thought he was OK. A little unlucky," Mattingly said. "He wasn't getting squared all over the yard."
Bolsinger, a ground-ball pitcher who has primarily relied on off-speed pitches this year, according to FanGraphs, finished Sunday with an even ratio of fly-ball outs to groundouts. But of the nine hits, six came on the ground, including three that never left the infield.
What really frustrated Bolsinger, though, was that most of these hits were not blasts no defense could contain. Instead, they were soft grounders that seemingly always went where Dodgers infielders were not.
"That's the kind of stuff you want, soft contact. You know, you're doing it well, but it just kind of went through the infield," he said. "It's baseball. It's hard to explain. Honestly, I don't think those ground balls would have broken glass."
On the very first play of the game, Curtis Granderson tapped a ball towards third, against the shift, and reached first easily.
Later, in the fourth, Ruben Tejada executed a hit-and-run perfectly, sending what normally would be a routine grounder to second baseman Howie Kendrick into a gaping hole in the right side of the infield. Juan Lagares had a similar hit two batters later, but it hit umpire Dan Bellino and bounced away from Kendrick.
All that being said, Bolsinger said he has no plans to change how he pitches.
"I felt like I was making my pitches, they just had some seeing-eye ground-ball singles that got through there. Like I said, when you're a ground-ball pitcher, some days you're going to get it where the infield is, some days stuff like that's gonna happen," he said.