Dodgers make history in 15-0 rout of Twins
One of baseball’s titanic institutions was bankrupt. Journeyman Trent Oeltjen nearly hit for the cycle. Rail-thin Dee Gordon hit for power.
What was happening here?
Monday might have been the oddest day of an already-strange season for the Dodgers, as their historic Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing was followed by an unprecedented outburst by their lineup in a 15-0 mauling of the Minnesota Twins at Target Field.
What the Dodgers did on the field was more than a season first. They did something they had never done in their 54 seasons in Los Angeles: every player in the starting lineup had at least one hit, one run and one run batted in.
“History,” Casey Blake said.
“All over the place,” Manager Don Mattingly said.
The Dodgers had 25 hits, tying their highest single-game total since their move to Los Angeles in 1958. The mark simultaneously set a new standard of incompetence for the Twins, who broke their all-time franchise record for most hits given up in a nine-inning game.
The 25th hit was the result of some lawyering, but not from the legal counsel Frank McCourt has retained in his effort to remain owner of the Dodgers.
When the game ended, the scoreboard showed the Dodgers had 24 hits. But Mattingly took issue with the ruling that his designated hitter, Andre Ethier, had reached base in the fourth inning on an error by Twins shortstop Tsuyoshi Nishioka.
“That’s a hit,” Mattingly said.
Mattingly asked team spokesman Jon Chapper to ask official scorer Stew Thornley to review the play. Thornley did and overruled his initial decision.
History was made.
“You wish you can have more days like that,” Matt Kemp said.
Kemp was one of three Dodgers to hit a home run in pitcher-friendly Target Field. Oeltjen and Blake also went deep.
Kemp, Oeltjen and Tony Gwynn Jr. each had four hits, with Oeltjen falling a double short of the cycle. Every player in the lineup had at least two hits.
The Dodgers’ 15 runs were a season high, as was the 15-run margin of victory.
Mattingly said he didn’t have an explanation for what happened, downplaying the psychological effects that the bankruptcy filing might have had on his players. (In a pregame meeting, Mattingly reminded his players to remain focused on baseball.)
“It’s just one of those days,” Mattingly said. “Everything went our way tonight.”
Even on defense.
The Dodgers’ shutout was threatened in the sixth inning, when Joe Mauer doubled to left with Alexi Casilla on first base. Gwynn retrieved the ball and delivered it to shortstop Gordon, who threw out Casilla at the plate for the final out.
Sidelined closer Jonathan Broxton underwent an MRI exam and was scheduled to be checked out by team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache. Broxton’s minor league rehabilitation was halted after two appearances because of soreness in his elbow.
Get our high school sports newsletter
Prep Rally is devoted to the SoCal high school sports experience, bringing you scores, stories and a behind-the-scenes look at what makes prep sports so popular.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.