The Tampa Bay Rays appeared to still be shell-shocked from the Dodgers coming back from a 6-0 margin over the last three innings of Friday night’s game to win 7-6 on Fernando Rodney’s wild throw into center field.
The Dodgers, meanwhile, continued the momentum they’d gained in those final three innings. Zack Greinke and the bullpen absolutely shut down the Rays’ offense, and the bats worked together well enough to push five runs across as the Dodgers took the series from Tampa and will look to go for the sweep on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball.
The Dodger offense started the scoring in the bottom of the first. Nick Punto picked up an infield single that was knocked down in the hole between first and second base, but the throw to get Punto was late. Adrian Gonzalez then blasted a pitch from Roberto Hernandez (formerly known as Fausto Carmona) into the right field seats to give the Dodgers a 2-0 lead.
The Dodgers tacked on two more in the third inning. Zack Greinke led off the inning with a walk, Carl Crawford followed up with a double to put runners at second and third, then Nick Punto’s single to center scored Greinke and Crawford and the Dodgers held a 4-0 lead.
The Dodgers would manage one more run in the bottom of the fourth. Andre Ethier hit a hard grounder that Rays first baseman James Loney couldn’t field cleanly. Zobrist picked the ball up at second, but Ethier beat pitcher Ramon Hernandez to the bag for an infield hit. Juan Uribe singled to left, then Skip Schumaker followed with a single to left of his own. A.J. Ellis then hit a sacrifice fly to medium-depth center field, scoring Ethier and giving the Dodgers a 5-0 lead.
Juan Uribe wound up being tricked on the play, stepping off third base momentarily after dusting himself off and not paying attention to the location of the ball. Rays third baseman Evan Longoria stepped over and tagged Uribe as soon as he stepped off for the second out of the inning.
The guys had a little fun with that after the game…
As for Greinke, he went 6 1/3 innings, giving up no runs on six hits, striking out seven and walking one. Greinke picked up the win to improve to 10-3. Roberto Hernandez got rocked for five earned runs in four innings of work, giving up eight hits while striking out three and walking one. Hernandez took the loss to fall to 6-12 on the season.
The Dodgers go for an attempt at sweeping the Rays today at Dodger Stadium, a 5:05 p.m. start. Clayton Kershaw (10-7, 1.91 ERA) goes for the Dodgers against Jeremy Hellickson (10-5, 4.77 ERA). Once again the game is well-sold, so please use patience in getting to the ballpark today.
We’ll leave you with one last look of the guys having a little fun with Juan Uribe about the hidden ball trick out.
- It’s trick and treat for Dodgers in 5-0 win over Rays (latimes.com)
- Tampa Bay Rays (66-48) at Los Angeles Dodgers (65-50), 4:05 p.m. (ET) (miamiherald.com)
- Game Day at Dodger Stadium (ericsdodgersblog.wordpress.com)
- Greinke, Gonzalez Lead Dodgers Over Tricky Rays (tampa.cbslocal.com)