LOS ANGELES — Alright, let’s take a deep breath. The Dodgers completed an insane comeback in the ninth to end their small skid and get back in the win column Tuesday night. This team never quits…
It was a rough start for Julio Urias and the bullpen Tuesday night and the damage started early for Toronto. Brandon Belt hit a sacrifice fly in the first inning to give the Blue Jays an early 1-0 lead and shortly after in the third, Bo Bichette extended their lead with a two-run home run to left center field to make it a 3-1 ballgame.
Urias navigated the lineup pretty well after that and stopped a few rallies from getting out of hand to finish his night with 6 innings, 3 earned runs and 5 strikeouts. He gave the Dodgers some length and kept them in the game for the most part, throwing a career high 104 pitches and left five runners stranded in his last three innings.
The Dodger offense woke up late in this one, but not after staying steady in the early part of the game. Freddie Freeman extended his on-base streak to 25 games and saw his on-base percentage rise to .451 in this stretch, launching a solo home run to right field to open the Dodger scoring. J.D. Martinez also launched a solo shot, his 25th of the year, to make it 4-3. After Justin Bruihl allowed three runs to score in the top half of the ninth to make it 7-3, here came the theatrics… In the bottom of the 9th the Dodgers offense put together a classic rally that we usually have seen in years past. Five runs in two innings completed an insane comeback, highlighted by Chris Taylor’s clutch two-run single to tie the game and James Outman’s RBI double to walk off Toronto and steal a late win. What. A. game.
Here are my three takeaways from the game:
James Outman Is Back
It seems as if ever since I wrote about James Outman being in a slump and looking completely lost at the plate, he has turned it around. Did he read my piece? Probably not, but I will take credit for it. All jokes aside, Outman looks confident, his approach seems solid, and he is seeing the ball a lot better right now. It has certainly been a roller coaster year for him, but I think Dodger fans have loved this ride so far. Outman has proven to be an above average center fielder and Tuesday night he went a perfect 3-3, with 2 walks tonight and has hits in 12 of his last 18 games in July. Not to mention he is hitting .318 in his last 7 games. This guy has all the tools to be a star and I believe he can be soon.
The Bullpen Finally Cracks
Coming into this game, the bullpen was lights out over the past month and it looked like absolutely nothing could get by them. Tonight, they finally cracked, but didn’t completely collapse. Yency Almonte came on and for the seventh straight outing he went an inning and faced the minimum. After him came Caleb Fergsuon who had also been lights out, but he promptly gave up a run to make it 4-2. Justin Bruihl came on to hold the Blue Jays lead at 4-3 but struggled to find the zone and gave up three runs in a crucial 9th inning to make it a 7-3 ballgame. This bullpen wasn’t going to be perfect, but now it gives the front office a little bit more to think about in terms of the trade deadline which is fast approaching.
Kiké Hernandez Is Back
The Dodgers acquired fan favorite and 2020 World Series champion Kiké Hernandez from the Red Sox Tuesday, in exchange for pitchers Nick Robertson and Justin Hagenman. Although I don’t see a fit baseball wise for this team, it is really good to have a guy back in that locker room that the players love for the vibes. Not to mention that his antics and personality resonate extremely well with the Dodger fanbase. He is a “superutility” player that can move around the diamond and we all know he is a playoff performer, something the Dodgers lacked last year. Oh, and Hernandez brings fun back to the game…
Tony Gonsolin takes the mound for the Dodgers against Yusei Kikuchi of the Blue Jays Wednesday. The matinee first pitch in Los Angeles is set for 1:10 p.m. PT.