The Los Angeles Dodgers closed out their homestand with a win on Wednesday night, defeating the San Diego Padres, 2-0, to complete a two-game series sweep.
Owners of the best home record in baseball, the Dodgers finished their homestand with a 7-2 mark to improve to 19-6 at Dodger Stadium on the season.
Kenta Maeda took the mound and was looking to build off his last start in which he tossed six shutout innings against the Washington Nationals, and he was able to do exactly that.
Maeda established his slider early, getting several swing-and-misses, and was able to maintain it throughout the course of the outing. He wound up tossing 6.2 shutout innings, allowing just three hits while striking out 12 without issuing a walk.
This was Maeda’s first start without a walk since last July, and the 12 strikeouts were one off tying a career high that he set in 2016 against the same Padres. Maeda’s 12 strikeouts nonetheless set a season high.
Not only did Maeda get the job done on the mound, but he also provided the only offense for his Dodgers at the plate, going 2-for-3.
His first hit was a big one as he stepped to the dish with two on and two out in the bottom of the second inning. On the fifth pitch of the at-bat, Maeda blooped a single down the right-field line to bring home both runners.
Maeda became the first pitcher since 1920 (when RBI became an official stat) to record at least 12 strikeouts in a game while driving in all of his team’s runs (minimum two runs scored). With his two-hit night, Maeda may be entering his name into the early National League Silver Slugger race for pitchers as he is batting .263/.263/.368 on the season.
The Dodgers bullpen was flawless in relief of Maeda, allowing just one hit in the final 2.1 innings to complete the shutout. Kenley Jansen worked around some trouble to toss a scoreless ninth to earn his 14th save of the season.