Hyun-Jin Ryu was neither dominant nor completely ineffective, but did surrender a pair of solo home runs, and the Chicago Cubs took the rubber match against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon.
Much like they had through the first two games of the series, the Dodgers continued to spin their wheels with runners in scoring position. Their struggles against left-handed pitching also resurfaced. Brett Anderson scattered three hits and issued foured walks over five scoreless innings.
Ryu walked Kyle Schwarber to start the bottom of the first, though he was later thrown out on an attempted steal when a ball briefly kicked away from Yasmani Grandal. The out loomed large as Ryu’s next pitch to Anthony Rizzo was deposited into the right-center field bleachers.
Kiké Hernandez led off the third inning with a drive to left-center field that initially was ruled an out via a circus catch by Schwarber. However, the Dodgers challenged the call and it was determined Schwarber used the wall and ivy to aid the catch.
Hernandez was awarded a double, only to be stranded by Ryu, Logan Forsythe and Corey Seager. Anderson did need an impressive catch by Albert Almora Jr. to keep the Dodgers off the board. It was the second time in as many at-bats that Almora robbed Seager of a hit.
Justin Turner singled and Yasiel Puig drew a walk to give the Dodgers two on with nobody out in the fourth. But again, it didn’t amount to anything as Anderson retired the next three batters faced. Addison Russell turned on a fastball in the bottom half of the inning for a home run that cleared Wrigley Field.
Anderson walked Ryu with one out in the fifth, allowed a two-out single to Seager, and then walked Turner to load the bases. The left-hander fell behind in the count to Puig, but got him to foul out to first base.
The Dodgers at that point dropped to 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position, stranding seven runners. Ryu allowed a pair of RBI singles and was removed with two outs in the bottom of the fifth. Josh Fields retired Russell to strand a runner at third base.
Ryu’s second start of the season was similar to his first. He had an identical number of pitches thrown (77) and innings (4.2). Though, on Thursday was charged for four runs on six hits. Grandal led off the ninth with a double before Wade Davis settled in to close out the game.
While the Dodgers suffered a 4-0 loss, their bullpen continued to be a silver lining. Josh Fields, Grant Dayton and Chris Hatcher combined to throw 3.1 scoreless innings. Los Angeles finished 1-for-24 with runners in scoring position and stranded 26 batters during the three-game series.