It would behoove the Dodgers to stop making a habit of winning in dramatic fashion. It’s tough on not only the fans, but on the players as well. But for now, any win will have to do, such as the Dodgers 4-3 victory over the San Diego Padres in 11 innings. With the Giants, Cardinals and Braves all winning, it was imperative that the Dodgers win to prevent falling further behind in their pursuit of the division and the wild card. Brandon League (1-6) picked up his first victory of the 2012 season, pitching two scoreless innings. Cory Burns (0-1) suffered the loss for the Padres, giving up 3 consecutive singles in the bottom of the 11th inning.
After retiring Matt Kemp on a fly ball and Hanley Ramirez on a grounder to short, Andre Ethier hit a single to right field. Luis Cruz followed with a sharp single to center, his fourth hit of game, advancing Ethier to third. Catcher A.J. Ellis then followed with a single to short right field, scoring Ethier and giving the Dodgers another hard-fought, much-needed victory.
That the Dodgers made it to extra innings was quite a feat, in of itself. Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth, things looked bleak after Ramirez was called out on strikes. But Ethier followed by hitting a Luke Gregorson pitch into the right-center field pavilion, tying the score 3-3.
The Dodgers saw themselves behind early yet again as the Padres wasted no time jumping on the Dodgers. Will Venables hit a one-out single to center. Chase Headley then followed with a booming home run to right off Dodger starter Joe Blanton. Blanton has struggled mightily with the Dodgers, giving up a good chunk of home runs, something has has plagued him pitching in hitter-friendly Citizen’s Bank Park in Philadelphia. The Dodgers hoped that pitching in pitcher-friendly Dodger Stadium would do the trick, but so far, that is not the case. Ironically, Blanton’s best outing with the Dodgers took place in Coors Field, of all places. He pitched seven and a third strong innnings, only giving up three runs before the bullpen almost blew a seven run lead.
Blanton settled down and the Dodgers chipped away. They finally got on the board in the fifth inning. Luis Cruz opened up with a single to center. After Ellis flied out to right, Cruz took second on a sacrifice bunt by Blanton. Mark Ellis then followed with a single to left field, scoring Cruz and cutting the lead to 2-1. The Dodgers evened up the game in the sixth on a Ramirez solo home run to center.
The Padres took the lead back in the seventh. With one, Padres starter Andrew Werner singled to center and moved to second on an infield single by Logan Forsythe an out later. Pitcher Clayton Richard then pinch-ran for Werner and scored on a single by Headley, putting the Padres up 3-2.
Lucky for the Dodgers, Ethier, Cruz and Ellis still had a few tricks up their sleeves in the later innings.
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.