The Los Angeles Dodgers pitching staff struggled to contain the Philadelphia Phillies offense for a second consecutive game and it resulted in a 12-10 loss in 10 innings.
Friday’s matchup resembled the series opener as the Phillies jumped out to an early lead before relinquishing it and ultimately pulling away late. “I think a combo,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts answered when asked if the loss had more to do with poor pitching or a strong performance by Philadelphia’s lineup.
“First off, you’ve got to give the Phillies a lot of credit. Offensively, I think they’ve had a really good approach and plan against all of our guys. There’s an intent to spoil pitches, use the entire field, take walks if needed. They’ve got a good plan and done a nice job.
“Conversely, on our side, just bad execution. I think there’s some sequencing things we’ve got to be better at. Up until Kimbrel took the mound, and I thought Graterol threw the ball well, just unlucky. We just didn’t pitch well.
“But it’s not who we are. I haven’t seen it in my time here, so it’s one of those that we’ve got to wash off and get ready for [Saturday].”
Walker Buehler exited his start with a lead but yielded five runs on a season-high nine hits in just five innings pitched. The Dodgers bullpen also saw their woes continue as Alex Vesia, Evan Phillips and Brusdar Graterol were largely ineffective.
“We’re going to dive in on some things. We need to be better,” Roberts said of the team’s pitch sequencing.
Craig Kimbrel was one of the few Dodgers relievers who did not allow a run on Friday, and after the game, admitted the team has to pitch more cautiously to the Phillies. “They have a lineup full of guys that can hit the ball out of the ballpark,” he explained.
“You do have to pitch kind of smart, which sometimes can make you fall behind. At times you don’t want to give guys too much credit, but you still want to pay attention to who can hit it out and who can’t.”
Barnes: Dodgers will address pitch sequencing
The Phillies’ strategy against the Dodgers has been to swing early and often, and through two games, it is yielding positive results. “They’re aggressive. They have some good hitters and dangerous hitters in the middle of their lineup,” Austin Barnes said after going 3-for-4 and starting behind the plate in Friday’s contest.
“Obviously Harper is going really well right now. We just didn’t throw the ball well. We didn’t do enough to influence them and to make other pitcher’s pitches better. We got behind, put ourselves in bad counts with so many pitches.”
Barnes also agreed with Roberts and vowed that the Dodgers will improve their pitch sequencing against the Phillies. “I think every team is different, every pitcher is different. We’ll go over what our plan is and how to attack hitters,” Barnes said.
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