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Dodgers

Dodgers remain on hold after another loss to Rockies, 8-6

Chase Utley

Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley bobbles a ground ball off the bat of Colorado’s Justin Morneau during Saturday’s game in Denver.

(David Zalubowski / Associated Press)

Sputter, slip, flail about. It’s the Dodgers … trying to win a third consecutive division title?

They looked as if they were really trying when they came back from a four-run deficit to tie the score Saturday night in Denver. Alas, there was no grand finish, no stretch-drive magic.

For the second straight night it was the Rockies — the 90-loss Rockies — who came out on top, getting a two-run homer from Carlos Gonzalez off Yimi Garcia in the ninth inning to walk off with an 8-6 victory at Coors Field.

It was a damaging loss for the Dodgers, whose magic number remained stuck at two and their lead over the Giants down to seven games in the National League West with eight to play.

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But the more troubling aspect was that the Mets won and have now tied the Dodgers in the loss column for best record. Should the two teams finish the season with the same record, their NL division series would open in New York because the Mets won the regular-season series against the Dodgers, four games to three.

Adam Liberatore, Pedro Baez and Luis Avilan had held the Rockies after Brett Anderson suffered a miserable outing, but Garcia started the bottom of the ninth by giving up a single to DJ LeMahieu and then the 36th home run of the season by Gonzalez.

The Rockies opened the game as if they were just going to hit forever. The first six Rockies collected hits. The first three were singles, followed by a Nolan Arenado grand slam. It was Arenado’s 40th home run of the season.

The Dodgers started their comeback in the second against Kyle Kendrick -- who came in 6-13 with a 6.37 ERA -- when Andre Ethier hit a two-run homer.

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The Rockies got one back in the bottom of the inning when Charlie Blackmon tripled and scored on a LeMahieu single, and another in the third on a Corey Dickerson double and Justin Morneau’s run-scoring hit.

Anderson was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the fifth. In his four innings, Anderson was charged with six runs on 10 hits and a walk. And did nothing to calm concerns that the Dodgers basically have a two-man rotation.

It remained a 6-2 Colorado lead, the Dodgers unable to get to Kendrick again until the fifth. A.J. Ellis doubled and scored on pinch-hitter Alex Guerrero’s soft liner.

The Dodgers tied the score and finally chased the unimpressive Kendrick in the sixth. Rookie Corey Seager tripled -- he has now reached base in each of his 19 starts -- and scored with Chase Ultey’s shift-beating single to left.

Justin Turner doubled in Utley, pulling the Dodgers within one and ending the night for Kendrick. Andre Ethier greeted right-hander Brookes Brown with another RBI double. For Ethier, it was the 300th double of his career.

The Dodgers did have a defensive highlight.

Joc Pederson has been a mess at the plate of late but continues to show his worth defensively. The Rockies had a runner at second base with two outs in the seventh when Dickerson lined a ball to deep left-center field. Pederson got a great jump and sprinted near the warning track to make the leaping, sliding catch.

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