Dominance by young Dodgers arms leads to split against the Rockies

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Offense mashes in game two and promising young arms deliver against the Rockies.

After an off day, the Dodgers were back in the swing of it in Colorado for a day and night doubleheader. In game one, the Dodgers got a great pitching performance by Ryan Pepiot but just could not get the bats going. In game two, they put it all together, with Bobby Miller carving the Rockies lineup and the offense crushing the Rockies pitching.

Game one was a bit of an odd game. Instead of playing a night game on Monday on short rest, the Dodgers had an early afternoon game on Tuesday. It was very clear that the Dodger energy levels were not on point in the first game but there was one huge positive: Ryan Pepiot. 

Pepiot took over for Caleb Ferguson who was used as the opener. Ferguson had a rough first inning, giving up three runs over ⅔ of an inning pitched. Then Pepiot came in and absolutely dominated. He went six innings, giving up only five hits and striking out nine Rockies over 95 pitches. Since he came back from the injured list, Pepiot has been downright electric for this pitching staff and lowered his ERA to 1.85 on the season. 

In game two, the Dodgers did it on both sides of the field, with the offense absolutely rolling and yet again another arm mowing down Colorado hitters. Bobby Miller had another excellent outing, going seven innings, giving up seven hits and matching Pepiot with a career high nine strikeouts. With his fastball pumping in at 98 MPH and higher, Miller looked like he wanted to put the nail in the coffin about who should start game one of the NLDS. 

The offense was held to just one run in the first game of the doubleheader but the second game showed the Dodgers offensive firepower. The 4-5-6 hitters (Max Muncy, James Outman, and Kiké Hernandez) were 10-15 with Outman getting four hits. Up and down the lineup, guys hit and hit in bunches as the Dodgers racked up 18 total hits and 11 total runs to absolutely blow out the Rockies. I know Colorado is one of the worst teams in the league, but I think Dodger fans would like to see this type of production in the playoffs.

The Dodgers are now 96-59 and have 6 games remaining in the regular season.

Here are my three takeaways:

Young Pitching Looking Great   

Both Ryan Pepiot and Bobby Miller set their career-highs in strikeouts in back to back outings on the same day. For both of these guys, the opportunity to not just get innings in the playoffs, but be huge contributors looms large. With enough of a sample size now, I have full confidence in both of these guys to get the job done in October and I would throw them in games one and two back-to-back if I were making the decisions. They are that good…

Bottom of Order Comes Through   

Eight out of nine hitters in the Dodger lineup had at least one hit tonight, but the most impressive part about these outbursts are the fact that the lower part of the lineup contributes in a huge way. I mentioned the 4-5-6 hitters in the lineup producing, but the 7-8-9 hitter also raked. David Peralta, Kolten Wong, and Amed Rosario combined for 5 hits and 4 RBI to pass the baton to the stars at the top of the lineup. This type of production is something that plagued the Dodgers in the NLDS in 2022, so I am glad to see them gaining momentum as the season nears an end. 

Freddie Freeman Makes More History 

Postgame, Freddie joked about trying not to watch the TV in order to cut out the distraction of his chase for the all-time doubles record, but it is ridiculous how good he has been. With a two-run home run in the sixth inning, he now has 27 home runs and is two RBI away from 100. Not just that, but he legged out his 58th double which is tied for the 10th most in MLB history and is third in franchise history with 86 extra-base hits. I know it is the dog days of the season, but Freddie is still staying steady and giving it his all day in and day out. 

The Dodgers will send Emmet Sheehan to the mound against Noah Davis for the Rockies. First pitch is set for 5:40 PM PST..