Dodgers News: Despite Shaky Appearance Against Diamondbacks, Dave Roberts Believes Scott Alexander Is ‘Trending In The Right Direction’
Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Scott Alexander during a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates
Joe Sargent-Getty Images

The Los Angeles Dodgers suffered a disappointing 3-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in Wednesday’s three-game finale at Chase Field, and as a result, saw their season-best seven-game winning streak come to an end.

Kenta Maeda was solid in what was his 12th start of the year, but ultimately logged only five innings of work as Dodgers manager Dave Roberts went to the bullpen earlier than usual.

Julio Urias tossed two scoreless innings of relief before handing the ball to Pedro Baez in the bottom of the eighth. The right-hander, who enjoyed an excellent month of May, yielded a game-tying RBI double to Diamondbacks outfielder Jarrod Dyson.

Ross Stripling followed suit with two shutout innings of his own, giving the Dodgers an opportunity to potentially steal a win in extra innings.

However, Arizona eventually came away with a victory after getting the best of Scott Alexander. The left-hander faced three batters and failed to record an out — the decisive blow being David Peralta’s walk-off single.

Alexander knew from the start that he was in for a challenge, noting that the Diamondbacks were consistently squaring up his sinker, as seen on SportsNet LA:

“I just think it’s a combination of a lot of things. Obviously, when you’re throwing one pitch and it’s not elite, you’re not going to get as many outs as you would if it is elite. I think for me that’s a sign right away that something’s not going good, when balls are getting up in the air. Baseball is a game of adjustments. Last year, first month of the season for me was really, really bad. Got sent down, came back up and I was pretty solid. Honestly, for me, just keep working. I hate to come in and lose games, give up runs, stuff like that. It’s a tough job. It is what it is. Just keep grinding.”

Despite his struggles against Arizona, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts is optimistic that Alexander will bounce back with better results the next time around:

“There’s some good throws in there. But when he’s right, as we all know, the ball has more depth. If you look at [Wednesday], the ball was mid-thigh. Whether it’s Escobar, Peralta, or any Major League hitter, a sinker ball up in the zone, it’s going flatten out a little bit. I thought his last turn he was much better and I still think that he’s trending in the right direction.”

Prior to Alexander’s rough appearance on Wednesday, he had been in the midst of one of his best stretches all season. He allowed runs in only two of his 10 May appearances, compiling a 3.60 ERA and 1.20 WHIP over five innings pitched.

In 28 overall appearances this season, Alexander is 3-2 with a 3.63 ERA, 5.01 FIP and 1.39 WHIP across 17.1 innings. He is inducing ground balls 61% of the time, which is nearly 10 points below his career average of 70.8.