2023 NLDS: Diamondbacks Believed Dodgers Picked Up Pitches During August Games At Dodger Stadium

Well before their National League Division Series matchup, the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers grew plenty familiar with each other this year as they played eight games within the first two weeks of the 2023 regular season.

The Dodgers’ 2023 Opening Series was a four-game set against the Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium, which the teams split. Los Angeles then dropped three of four at Chase Field as they struggled to contain Arizona’s aggressiveness on the basepaths.

The Dodgers and Diamondbacks then didn’t play again until August, first with a two-game series at Chase Field from August 8-9, then at Dodger Stadium from Aug. 28-30. The Dodgers won all five games, outscoring the Diamondbacks 30-9 in those contests.

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports, the Diamondbacks thought tipping pitches was a factor :

They privately believed that when the Dodgers clobbered them in August, outscoring them 23-5 in a three-game sweep at Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers were picking up their pitches.

How the Diamondbacks pitched the Dodgers during NLDS games at Dodger Stadium was an early talking point. Manager Dave Roberts noted Merrill Kelly and Zac Gallen changed their respective approaches, and some players echoed that sentiment as well.

“It was definitely different. On our side, it’s hard to tell if that was on purpose or just the circumstance of the game, of them having six, seven runs already on the board,” Max Muncy said of Kelly prior to Game 2.

“That’s one of those things where it was hard to tell us for, but we definitely noticed he was attacking us different. His stuff was different. He was throwing three, four miles an hour harder than he had thrown his last three, four times against us.

“Everything was sharp. He was hitting all his spots. It was a really impressive outing if you take a step back and look at what he was doing.”

The Dodgers scored just six runs in the NLDS — the same amount the Diamondbacks had without before recording an out in Game 1.

Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman went a combined 1-for-21, with the lone hit an infield single from the All-Star first baseman.

Dodgers accused of stealing signs

While the Diamondbacks’ stance appears to be more on their own pitchers tipping as opposed to improper conduct from Dodgers, they have not been immune to accusations in the past.

San Diego Padres starter Seth Lugo believed the Dodgers stole signs during a game at Petco Park this season, and in 2019, former New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway, bench coach Jim Riggleman and Noah Syndergaard suggested L.A. knew what pitches were coming.

The Milwaukee Brewers accused the Dodgers of stealing signs during the 2018 NL Championship Series.

Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!