As Dodgers battle injuries, Zach McKinstry makes a memorable return in win over Mets
Entering this weekend, Zach McKinstry had made four trips to and from Oklahoma City this season, but only one trip to the plate in a big-league game.
As he was shuffled back and forth from the Dodgers’ triple A affiliate, the utility player usually had been needed by the Dodgers only as a warm body on the bench, sticking around for a couple days before being returned to the minors once the team figured out longer-term roster plans.
On Friday, however, the Dodgers were low on alternatives.
A day after announcing Kevin Pillar had suffered a left shoulder fracture, the team put Edwin Ríos on the injured list with a tear in his right hamstring. Eddy Alvarez was called up but didn’t arrive at the stadium until shortly before first pitch.
Dodgers beat Mets 6-1 behind more dominance from Tyler Anderson, three home runs at the plate
The Dodgers made sure Tyler Anderson’s six scoreless innings stood up Friday night, beating the Mets 5-1 to secure at least a split in this weekend’s marquee four-game series.
After extending his recent scoreless innings streak to 26 with a third-straight scoreless start, Anderson left the mound with a four-run lead the Dodgers had built with home runs from Cody Bellinger and Zach McKinstry.
While the Mets scored their lone run in top of the seventh, when Pete Alonso took Yency Almonte deep, the Dodgers immediately got it back when Trea Turner legged out an RBI infield single to score Mookie Betts in the bottom half of the frame.
Chris Taylor added more insurance with a solo homer in the eighth.
The Dodgers are now 35-17, surpassing the Mets to reclaim sole possession of the best record in the National League.
Final: Dodgers 6, Mets 1
Dodgers extend lead as Tyler Anderson completes another scoreless start
Tyler Anderson’s scoreless inning streak is up to 26, after the left-handed blanked the Mets for six innings tonight in his third-consecutive scoreless outing.
Anderson gave up just three hits, struck out five batters, didn’t issue a single walk, and pounded the zone with strikes on 57 of 81 pitches.
His season ERA is now 2.59. He has made four consecutive quality starts.
Zach McKinstry, meanwhile, doubled the Dodgers lead in the fourth-inning with a two-run homer — his first hit in the majors this season.
End 6th: Dodgers lead 4-0
Cody Bellinger home run gives Dodgers early lead
Cody Bellinger hit his first home run since May 12 in the second inning, a two-run shot off Mets starter Chris Bassitt that opened the scoring.
The drive, Bellinger’s sixth of the season, gives Tyler Anderson some breathing room.
So far, Anderson has been rolling, extending his scoreless inning streak to 23 with three one-hit innings to begin tonight’s game. He also already has six strikeouts.
Mid 3rd: Dodgers lead 2-0
Dodgers wear pride caps for first time in club history
The Dodgers took the field Friday in caps never before worn in club history.
In celebration of the team’s pride night recognizing the LGBTQ+ community, the Dodgers caps featured a rainbow-colored “LA” emblem.
It’s the first of two times the Dodgers will wear the caps in a game this season. They are scheduled to do so again on June 11 while in San Francisco, when the Giants will also be wearing special caps for their pride night game.
As part of Friday’s festivities, the brother of late Dodgers outfielder Glenn Burke, Sidney, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Burke, who played for the Dodgers from 1976 to 1978 after being drafted by the club in 1972, was MLB’s first openly gay player.
Edwin Ríos to miss ‘handful of weeks’ with hamstring tear
Just as he was beginning to get regular playing time, Edwin Ríos’ season came to a screeching halt Friday.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced Ríos suffered a tear in his right hamstring, an injury that will land Ríos on the injured list and keep him out at least “a handful of weeks,” according to Roberts.
“I’m just really bummed out for Eddy,” Roberts said. “He was off to such a nice start, so now to miss a handful of weeks, interrupt his season, I feel bad for him.”
Ríos, 28, sustained the injury while trying to beat out a ground ball while running to first base Thursday night. Roberts said the injury occurred in his lower hamstring, and that “part of the tendon or the muscle came off the bone,” though surgery is not believed to be required.
Roberts said the Dodgers would call up Eddy Alvarez to replace Ríos on the roster. Zach McKinstry — who had only rejoined the team Thursday to replace Kevin Pillar after he suffered a fractured shoulder — is the Dodgers’ designated hitter Friday against the New York Mets.
In 27 games this season, Ríos was batting .244 and had seven home runs, second most on the team behind Mookie Betts. After playing sparingly over the first month, he had become a mainstay in the lineup in recent weeks, especially with Max Muncy nursing an elbow injury.
In four MLB seasons, Ríos has been a .219 career hitter with 20 home runs, averaging one big fly every 15 trips to the plate.
Last year, he only played 25 games before having season-ending shoulder surgery.
“He’ll be ready to get back to work,” Roberts said.
Alvarez, a 32-year-old utility player the Dodgers signed to a minor-league contract last winter, was called up over fellow left-handed slugger Jake Lamb. Alvarez has posted slightly better numbers in triple A than Lamb, another offseason addition to a Dodgers organization that struggled to find reliable depth at the plate last season. Unlike Lamb, Alvarez also has minor-league options.
“Eddy certainly gives us a lot of versatility on the defensive side, it’s another left-handed bat,” Roberts said. “We saw him a little bit in spring training. There’s a little bit of power in there, sneaky power.”
McKinstry, who has bounced back and forth between the big-league and triple A rosters over the last year, unable to rediscover the sizzling form he displayed at the start of the 2021 campaign, could also receive some playing time.
“It’s just not trying to do too much,” Roberts said of Alvarez and McKinstry. “They’re not gonna be expected to carry the lineup, but just have good competitive at-bats and play good defense.”
Here is the Dodgers lineup for Friday:
Blake Treinen plays catch
Blake Treinen played catch Friday afternoon for the first time since injuring his shoulder in April.
In left field of Dodger Stadium, Treinen threw in front of a couple trainers, vice president of player performance Brandon McDaniel, and pitching coaches Mark Prior and Connor McGuiness
It was a light game of catch, with Treinen not throwing anywhere near 100% intensity. It only lasted about five minutes, but Treinen said he felt good after.
He said the plan is for him to begin throwing regularly again as he tries to continue his recovery progression.
Treinen hasn’t pitched in a game since April 14 and has been ruled out until at least after the All-Star break.
‘We need him’: How Dodgers closer Craig Kimbrel is trying to clean up his mechanics
The ball snapped out of the closer’s right hand, dived hard toward the bottom of the strike zone as it reached the plate, and was harmlessly tapped for a routine ground ball to third base.
Three nights after his season had reached an early low point with his first blown save as a Dodger, Craig Kimbrel bounced back Thursday by retiring the New York Mets in order in the ninth inning of a 2-0 win.
“It was a very clean, efficient outing,” manager Dave Roberts said.
And it started with a well-executed curveball — a positive sign for a pitcher who has been trying to recalibrate his delivery amid a forgettable start to the season.
On Monday night, when Kimbrel gave up two runs to blow a ninth-inning lead against the Pittsburgh Pirates, it was an inability to command the curveball that cost him most.
How to watch and stream the Dodgers this season
Here’s a look at the Dodgers broadcast and streaming schedule for the remainder of the 2022 regular season:
ICYMI: Tony Gonsolin effective as Dodgers blank resurgent Mets
When he bought the New York Mets two offseasons ago, billionaire Steve Cohen cited the Dodgers as an organization to emulate, eager to model his own club after the heavy-spending, consistently-winning, big-market behemoth on the opposite coast.
On Thursday, Cohen and the Mets got a first-hand example of all the reasons why.
In the opening game of a highly anticipated weekend series between the National League’s two best teams so far this season, the Dodgers flexed their organizational might to earn a 2-0 win at Dodger Stadium.
A stellar staff performance on the mound was highlighted by six scoreless innings from Tony Gonsolin, a homegrown talent who was once an afterthought in the team’s rotation but now leads the NL with a 1.59 ERA.
A high-priced, big-name lineup did just enough at the plate, manufacturing one run in the fifth inning on Mookie Betts’ RBI single and another in the sixth inning on Justin Turner’s RBI double while outhitting the Mets 8-3.