Dodgers 4, Diamondbacks 3 (11 Innings)
PHOENIX, Sept. 1st – Cody Bellinger hit a game-tying home run in the top of the ninth, and Joc Pederson hit a pinch-hit go-ahead homer in the 11th to give the Los Angeles Dodgers a 4-3 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Dodgers added two others by first baseman David Freese and catcher Russell Martin to account for all their scoring in the game.
Freese, activated from the injured list Sunday morning, smoked a 3-2 pitch to left-center for his 10th round-tripper of the season. It came with one out in the top of the first, and it meant that the Dodgers scored first in every game of this series. The next run came in the top of the third, when Martin hit a leadoff home run into the pool area on a 2-1 count.
The Diamondbacks had their chances in the second and third innings. However, leadoff singles by third baseman Eduardo Escobar and shortstop Nick Ahmed were wiped out by 4-6-3 double play groundouts. In the second, the victim was Jake Lamb, while in the third, it was catcher Alex Avila.
Diamondbacks Tie Game in Scary Moment, Later Take the Lead
The home nine saw their fortunes turn in the fourth, though. Rookie Dustin May took the mound in relief of starter Ross Stripling. He struck out center fielder Jarrod Dyson on a 3-2 count but then surrendered three straight singles to load the bases. That brought up first baseman Jake Lamb, who rocketed a comebacker off May’s head. The ball flew all the way into shallow left, scoring right fielder Tim Locastro and second baseman Ketel Marte from third and second, respectively.
May stayed on the ground as the play ended. Medical staff ran to check him out. After a few minutes, he, thankfully, walked off under his own power. Adam Kolarek then came into the game, and, after surrendering a one-run single to left fielder Josh Rojas, walked Ahmed but induced a 4-6-3 double play ground out by Avila, ending the threat.
Dodgers Tie It Up, Win in Extras
The score remained 3-2 in favor of the Diamondbacks going into the top of the ninth. Stefan Crichton, Yoan Lopez, T.J. McFarland, and Matt Andriese had combined to pitch three and two-thirds innings of shutout ball. After Andriese retired third baseman Justin Turner on a bunt attempt, left-hander Andrew Chafin came into the game to face the left-handed-hitting Cody Bellinger. Chafin has had tremendous success against Bellinger all-time, limiting him to a .235 average in 18 plate appearances. This season, Bellinger had been 1-for-7 off Chafin, with the lone hit coming on June 5th. On a 1-1 count, however, Chafin made a mistake over the plate, and Bellinger made him pay, driving it into the pool area in right center for a game-tying home run.
The Diamondbacks had a chance to defeat the Dodgers in the bottom of the 10th. With one out, Ahmed ripped a double into the left-center field gap off reliever Casey Sadler and advanced to third on a grounder to second by Avila. That brought up the red-hot Christian Walker, but Sadler walked him intentionally to face Dyson. Walker took second on the first pitch of the three-pitch at-bat. It culminated in a groundout to second by Dyson.
Pederson led off the 11th as a pinch hitter and worked the count to 3-2 against Taylor Clarke. He then sent a deep fly to the seats in right field for a go-ahead home run. Pedro Baez took over on the mound in the bottom of the 11th for the Dodgers and pitched a 1-2-3 inning to slam the door.
Casey Sadler (4-0) earned the win in relief. Taylor Clarke (4-5) took the loss for Arizona, while Baez notched his first save of the season. The win reduces the Dodgers’ magic number for the division crown to seven. They head back to Los Angeles for a six-game homestand against the Colorado Rockies and San Francisco Giants. Their series against the Rockies opens Monday night and finishes Wednesday night. The Diamondbacks, despite the loss, remain three and a half games behind the Chicago Cubs for the second Wild Card spot. They begin a three-game home series with the San Diego Padres Monday afternoon.
Embed from Getty Images