The Los Angeles Dodgers have asserted themselves as one of the best teams in baseball so far this season, and they continued their dominance on Sunday afternoon, defeating the Philadelphia Phillies, 8-0, to complete a series sweep.
The win improved the Dodgers to 41-19 on the season, which puts them on pace to win 111 games. They are 25-7 at Dodger Stadium and have now finished four homestands in a row with a series sweep.
Sunday started off as a pitcher’s duel as Rich Hill turned in one of his best starts of the season. He kept the Phillies off the scoreboard for seven innings, allowing just three hits and three runs while striking out nine.
Hill is now 2-1 with a 2.25 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in seven starts this season. He has struck out 46 and walked just nine in 40 total innings.
Phillies starter Nick Pivetta also was able to keep the Dodgers off the scoreboard for six innings, but Los Angeles was finally able to break through in the seventh inning against Philadelphia’s bullpen.
With two outs and no one on base, David Freese hit a solo home run to break the scoreless tie. The long ball was his sixth of the season, and Freese is now 11-for-21 (.524 batting average) with three home runs in his last nine games.
The eighth inning was then a big one for the Dodgers offense, as they tacked on seven more runs to put the game out of reach. Max Muncy got it started with a double, and Alex Verdugo and Freese both contributed run-scoring singles.
Chris Taylor laid down a safety squeeze that brought home two runs due to a throwing error. After a base hit by Russell Martin, Kiké Hernandez drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and then Joc Pederson capped off the rally with a two-run home run to left-center field.
Pederson has been on a torrid pace to begin the season. He now has 18 home runs and a 1.041 on-base plus slugging percentage.
Joe Kelly even got in on the action, tossing a perfect ninth inning with two strikeouts to close out the victory.