It took him eight tries, but Dodgers starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi finally picked up his first win of the 2012 season last night in the Dodgers 4-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. Backed by solo home-runs from Scott Van Slyke and Elian Herrera, and the return of 2nd baseman Mark Ellis, the Dodger offense finally provided some run support for the much maligned Eovaldi (1-5), who has pitched quite well this year with no wins to show for it before last night.
The suddenly surging Dodgers won their third game in row, and fourth in five games as they increased their lead in the National League West to a game and a half over the San Francisco Giants. The Diamondbacks lost their sixth in a row and now trail the Dodgers by seven games in the division. Eovaldi pitched a strong six innings, giving up one run on five hits. Scott Elbert and Ronald Belisario pitched scoreless 7th and 8th innings, respectively and Kenley Jansen recorded his 15th save. Wade Miley was tagged with the loss, giving up four runs on eight hits, including the home-runs by Van Slyke and Herrera.
The Dodgers opened the game with a onslaught, well for them, at least. After Herrera struck out to open the game, the Dodgers collected four consecutive hits. Ellis, starting his first game since having emergency surgery that, in effect, saved his leg back on May 19th, doubled to left. Jerry Hairston Jr. singled him over to 3rd, which was followed by a double by Juan Rivera to make it 1-0. Luis Cruz continued his solid play by singling in Hairston Jr., giving the Dodgers to a 2-0 lead.
Eovaldi escaped a huge jam he created for himself in the bottom of the 2nd inning. He loaded the bases with nobody out, but got Aaron Hill to ground back to the mound, which started the 1-2-3 double play. However, the next batter, Stephen Drew, drove in Paul Goldschmidt with a single to right cutting the lead in half, 2-1. But the rally was snuffed by a beautiful defensive play by 3rd baseman, Hairston Jr., as he saved a potential two-run double by Miley, keeping the Dodgers ahead.
From there on out, the Eovaldi and company would not be threatened again by the Diamondbacks.
The Dodgers welcomed back Ellis with open arms. He proved his value, going two for four with a double and a run scored, while providing a steady glove in the field. But the news wasn’t all great on the injury front. Shortstop Dee Gordon suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right thumb while sliding head-first into 3rd base in their game against the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday night. Surgery is scheduled for Friday, and should keep him out of the lineup for six to eight weeks. It’s been that type of year for the Dodgers. When one man goes down, somebody else continues to step up. They’ll need to continue this if they hope to contend for the National League West this year.
About the Author
Written by Simran Reyatt
Growing up in the suburbs of Los Angeles I became passionate about sports around 1988, watching the showtime Lakers and the miracle Dodgers. I have been hooked ever since! Lakers, Raider and Dodgers are my main passions, but really, I'm a huge sports lover as a whole.