Dodgers starting to get ridiculous, rally in ninth, win 5-4 in 12th
Yeah, right, and apparently pigs can fly. Because the Dodgers can seemingly win every kind of ridiculous game known to man, and a few never before known.
The Dodgers won again Wednesday, won in perhaps their most unlikely fashion yet. They won when they looked headed for a rare defeat yet somehow rallied for a 5-4 victory in 12 innings before what was left of a Dodger Stadium crowd of 44,091.
After Andre Ethier’s pinch-hit, two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning tied the score, 4-4, the Dodgers won it in the 12th after Yasiel Puig hit a bouncer up the middle. It screamed routine single, except, of course, this is Puig, and when he determined center fielder Juan Lagares was not charging the ball sufficiently, he sprinted into second base for a double that never should have happened.
Naturally, Adrian Gonzalez followed with a game-winning hit, doubling down the left-field line to score Puig and start the Dodgers’ latest celebration.
The victory pushed the Dodgers’ winning streak to eight games and left them 40-8 in their last 48 games.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, the Dodgers appeared on their way to that rarest of events these days –- a rather routine loss –- when they found a touch more lightning.
Trailing 4-2, Mark Ellis led off with a single against LaTroy Hawkins, forced into closer’s duties with Bobby Parnell on the disabled list because of a herniated disk. Jerry Hairston Jr. next smashed a come-backer that ricocheted off Hawkins’ groin.
Hawkins recovered to throw Hairston out, but Ethier dusted off memories of his old heroics with the homer to tie the score. Ethier did not start because of a sore calf.
The way things are going, this is not the best time to be a Dodger who is viewed as a possible weak link. This is a team with championship aspirations, and if you can’t get on board you could be left behind.
The Dodgers fell behind 4-0 after three innings when starter Chris Capuano continued his erratic play. Capuano has been something of an enigma this season, rotating near brilliant starts with cover-the-eyes outings.
Wednesday was one of those best-not-look nights. He lasted only four innings and never appeared sharp in any of them, particularly in the third when he gave up a three-run homer to Marlon Byrd.
In his last two starts, Capuano now has gone a combined 9 1/3 innings and given up nine earned runs and 20 hits. Yet in his two starts previous to those, he did not surrender a run in 13 innings.
Capuano was left with a 4.66 earned-run average on the season. Meanwhile, currently pitching for the Dodgers’ triple-A Albuquerque club is Stephen Fife, who is 4-3 with a 2.47 ERA in nine previous starts for the Dodgers.
Capuano is in the final season of a two-year contract with the Dodgers that is paying him $6 million this season (they have a $1-million buyout for next season’s possible/unlikely $8-million extension).
The Dodgers, however, have shown no reluctance to cut ties with players still owed significant salary. They previously released left-hander Ted Lilly ($13.2 million for the season).
Meanwhile, on Wednesday the Dodgers could get nothing going early against Mets starter Dillon Gee. The right-hander held them scoreless through five innings, the Dodgers finally awakening for a pair of runs in the sixth.
After Gonzalez singled, Hanley Ramirez doubled and Skip Schumaker was hit by a pitch to load the bases with one out. Mark Ellis bounced to shortstop, but he beat the relay to avoid the double play as Ramirez scored.
Hairston singled off the glove of second baseman Daniel Murphy to drive in Ramirez, but Tim Federowicz struck out for the third time to end the rally.
The victory went to Paco Rodriguez (3-2), who completed seven scoreless innings by the bullpen.
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