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Five takeaways from the Dodgers' 3-1 loss in Game 3

Five takeaways from the Dodgers' 3-1 loss in Game 3
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Trevor Rosenthal celebrates after the final out of the Cardinals' 3-1 win over the Dodgers in Game 3 of the NLDS on Monday. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Once more into the breach, dear Dodgers faithful.

Alas, time is running out after the Dodgers' 3-1 loss to the Cardinals in Game 3 in St. Louis. Now they are down 2-1 in the best-of-five division series, and it's win Tuesday or it's a season.

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Here are five takeaways from the Dodgers' latest crushing loss:

Dale Scott is not going to make the Dodgers' Umpire Hall of Fame

I suppose he was equally bad for both teams, but the Dodgers were left mystified and frustrated Monday with the home plate umpire. Scott was the inconsistent sort. One pitch would be right over the middle and he'd call it a ball, the next would be outside and he'd call it a strike.

He was so bad, the Dodgers actually spoke out against him.

"Terrible strike zone," said Matt Kemp. "I've never seen anything like it."

Kemp shared his view with Scott after being called out on strikes to lead off the ninth. At least Scott didn't toss him.

The Dodgers' bullpen is absolutely as bad as you feared

Outside of Kenley Jansen, is there anyone down there you actually trust?

Manager Don Mattingly doesn't seem to, either. He looks as if he's making this up as he goes along, which is strange only because it is October.

His postseason bullpen is a desperate mosh pit of inexperienced guys who probably shouldn't be here (Scott Elbert, Pedro Baez, Carlos Frias), veterans everyone's lost faith in (Brian Wilson, Jamey Wright, Brandon League and the ousted Chris Perez) and a fairly reliable reliever who's been shaky of late (J.P. Howell).

There is no bridge to Jansen. If the starter doesn't go eight innings, the villagers are charging the walls.

Yasiel Puig once again looks completely lost at the plate

Yes, he tripled and scored the Dodgers' only run Monday. Around that, he has managed eight strikeouts in nine at-bats. He's reverted to the incredibly talented and mystifying hitter he was for almost the entire second half.

What's Mattingly to do?

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No reason to expect he'll sit him today and start Andre Ethier against right-hander Shelby Miller. He stuck by him even in mid-September when he was drowning at the plate for months.

And it's almost as unlikely he will move him out of the No. 2 hole. That's where Mattingly sent him to get him going last time. Puig needs to figure it out immediately, and might want to start by laying off those low-and-outside sinkers.

Hyun-Jin Ryu is remarkable and not like any other pitcher

He threw one inning in a month and then came out Monday and pitched six fairly wondrous innings. He threw 94 pitches and said he felt like he could have gone another.

Mattingly said he was confident Ryu could go deep in the game, despite having not pitched for so long because of a sore shoulder. Mattingly says a lot of things you don't believe, but he was right on this one.

Ryu, the starting pitcher who almost never throws between starts, is a different kind of animal. One the Dodgers are fortunate to have.

Matt Carpenter is not human, so quit pretending he is

Three homers in three days? For a leadoff hitter who hit only eight all season?

Don't try to figure it, it's not going to work. Clearly the Dodgers haven't a clue what he's about. I'd say they have an advanced scout with some explaining to do, but that would imply there's an actual explanation.

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