The Dodger hot streak has officially hit historical proportions. Not only has the team now won 30 of its last 37 games to take a 4 1/2 game lead on the National League West and climb 11 games over .500, they have also broken a franchise record that dates back to 1924, winning their 13th consecutive road game.
The road has not always been easy, the team has required a few remarkable comebacks along the way and tied games while down to their last out on a couple of occasions, but the cumulative effort ensures that the 2013 Dodgers will be forever remembered in franchise lore, with seemingly a different hero coming on every night to help the Dodgers stay on top.
For this game, the pitching efforts of starting pitcher Chris Capuano and the Dodger bullpen kept the Cubs off the scoreboard and let the three runs produced by the offense stand up.
The Dodgers scored first in the top of the third inning. Singles by Yasiel Puig and Andre Ethier put runners on first and third, and with the Cubs playing a heavy shift against Jerry Hairston, Jr. anticipating that he would pull the ball or slap it up the middle, Hairston took advantage and slapped the ball into the large gap between first and second base, scoring Puig. Andre Ethier, thinking the ball was hit slowly enough, took off for third, but Darwin Barney recovered the ball before it could get too far into the outfield and Ethier was out after being caught in a run-down between second and third. The frame ended with the Dodgers leading 1-0.
With Capuano cruising, the Dodgers milked a couple more runs off Cubs starter Jeff Samardzija in the top of the sixth. Samardzija, who had been in and out of trouble for most of the first five frames but had allowed only the one run in the third, walked Schumaker to start the inning. After Scott Van Slyke struck out, Tim Federowicz shot a line drive down the right field line for a double, giving the Dodgers runners on second and third. Samardzija struck out Chris Capuano, but then a line single to right by Carl Crawford scored both Schumaker and Federowicz for a 3-0 Dodger lead. Samardzija walked Puig before getting out of the inning.
Samardzija pitched 6 innings, giving up 3 runs on 7 hits, striking out 9 while walking five.
Capuano got 6 1/3 innings of his own, giving up 0 runs on 6 hits, striking out 5 and walking 1. Capuano left with one on and two out in the seventh, but Brandon League got a double play ball to end the inning.
Yasiel Puig added to his highlight reel, making a diving catch of a line drive for the first out of the bottom of the seventh and preventing a run from scoring, but suffered a contusion to his wrist on the play. Puig was replaced in right field by Skip Schumaker in the 8th inning and is day-to-day, but not expected to miss significant time with the wrist injury.
The Cubs threatened in the 8th inning, but Paco Rodriguez escaped a bases loaded jam by striking out Wellington Castillo to end the threat. Kenley Jansen struck out two batters in a 1-2-3 ninth.
Chris Capuano picks up the win, improving his record to 4-6. Jeff Samardzija takes the loss, he falls to 6-10. Kenley Jansen picks up his 16th save of the season.
The Dodgers will try to complete a four game sweep of the Cubs, while the Cubs look to salvage a game out of the four game weekend set today at Wrigley Field, an 11:20 a.m. local start time. Stephen Fife (3-3, 2.76 ERA) goes for the Dodgers after being recalled from AAA Albuquerque and coming off the 15 Day Disabled List. He’ll be countered by the Cubs’ Carlos Villanueva (2-7, 4.33 ERA).
- Dodgers beat Cubs, set club road record (channel3000.com)
- Cubs Shut Down As Dodgers Set Road Victory Mark (chicago.cbslocal.com)
- Recap: Dodgers 3, Cubs 0 (wyff4.com)
- Samardzija admits contract talk distracting; Cubs lose to Dodgers (miamiherald.com)