One night after Fleetwood Mac performed at the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation second annual Blue Diamond Gala, the Dodgers continued with their homestand in the opener of a three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Kenta Maeda retired the first two batters faced before allowing a single to Paul Goldschmidt, whose career success against the Dodgers has been covered ad nauseam. Maeda then got help from Howie Kendrick as he made a diving catch on a slicing fly ball hit to his right.
Chase Utley drove the fourth pitch he saw from Zack Godley to deep center field, only to be robbed of an extra-base hit by Michael Bourn’s leaping grab in front of the wall. Godley proceeded to retire Corey Seager and Justin Turner to end a quick inning.
Maeda ended a 1-2-3 second inning by climbing the ladder on Welington Castillo to get him swinging on a full-count pitch. Adrian Gonzalez led off the bottom of the second with an opposite-field single.
After Andrew Toles drew a walk to put two on with two outs, Joc Pederson broke the scoreless tie with a two-run, line-drive double that carried over Yasmany Tomas’ head in left field. Godley worked around a Seager base hit in the third to keep the Dodgers’ lead at 2-0.
Kendrick’s pair of impressive catches on the night were met by a misplay as a poor route allowed a ball to sail over his head to result in a two-out double for Jake Lamb in the fourth inning. Castillo struck out for a second time, keeping Maeda’s shutout work intact.
Kendrick worked a leadoff walk in the bottom of the fourth and was gifted two bases on a pair of wild pitches from Godley. With one out and the Diamondbacks infield playing on the edge of the grass, Toles pulled a run-scoring double down the first base line. The RBI was Toles’ first in his Major League career.
Maeda continued to breeze, retiring the Diamondbacks in order in the fifth and sixth innings. His string of consecutive batters retired was snapped at seven as Goldschmidt lined a leadoff single off Seager’s glove in the seventh.
Lamb followed with a lineout to right, which triggered a $250,000 bonus for Maeda as he reached 120 innings pitched on the season. Castillo lined an RBI double to the gap in right-center field that trimmed the Dodgers’ lead and knocked Maeda out of the game.
Adam Liberatore entered for his first action since missing two games with knee swelling. Liberatore walked pinch-hitter Brandon Drury to put two on with one out, and gave way to Joe Blanton. He gave up a pair of bloop singles, with the latter scoring a run.
Blanton then walked pinch-hitter Rickie Weeks Jr. to bring in the tying run and struck out Jean Segura. Luis Avilan replaced Blanton and was the victim of bad luck. He made a diving stop on a slow grounder toward second base, only to look up and find no one covering first base.
The RBI infield single gave the Diamondbacks a 4-3 lead. Pedro Baez and Scott Van Slyke entered as part of a double switch, replacing Avilan and Kendrick. Baez got ahead in the count 0-2 on Goldschmidt but left his third pitch over the middle of the plate, resulting in a bases-clearing double.
Pederson connected on a second line-drive hit of the night with his shot in the bottom of the seventh clearing the center-field wall to trim the Dodgers’ deficit to 7-5. Daniel Hudson was removed after walking Van Slyke to bring the tying run to the plate.
Left-hander Zac Curtis saw his first pitch to Utley crushed for a game-tying, two-run homer. Two pitches later, Seager doubled to the right-center field gap. After getting Turner to ground out, Randall Delgado intentionally walked Gonzalez.
Delgado retired pinch-hitter Yasiel Puig but allowed an RBI single to Grandal that gave the Dodgers an 8-7 lead. The final tally on the wild seventh inning was: 72 minutes, eight pitchers used, 12 runs scored, 11 hits and four walks.
Louis Coleman erased a leadoff bloop single in the eighth by inducing a double play. Kenley Jansen took over and needed one pitch to end the inning. Seager’s RBI double in the bottom of the eighth gave the Dodgers some breathing room with a 9-7 lead.
Jansen returned to the mound in the ninth and completed his four-out save opportunity without issue. The Dodgers’ victory, coupled with the San Francisco Giants’ loss, pulled them to within one game of first place in the National League West.