The Los Angeles Dodgers were held in check by Eury Pérez but rallied against the Miami Marlins bullpen for a 3-1 comeback win to avoid suffering consecutive losses for the first time since July 26-28.
Pérez pitched on the Dodger Stadium mound one year ago in the 2022 MLB Futures Game, and was nothing short of dominant in his return. The rookie right-hander allowed just two hits and set a career high with 10 strikeouts.
Chris Taylor’s two-out double in the second inning and Will Smith’s one-out single in the fourth were the Dodgers’ only baserunners against Pérez.
His dominant performance overshadowed what was an encouraging season debut for Ryan Pepiot.
Caleb Ferguson started as an opener, and he was followed by Pepiot collecting five strikeouts over five innings. However, he faced the prospect of a tough-luck loss due to allowing an infield single and RBI double in the fourth inning.
Pepiot nearly allowed a second run but was aided by David Peralta throwing out Jorge Soler at home plate for an inning-ending double play on his attempt to tag.
Pepiot’s importance and potential role have seemingly increased with Tony Gonsolin going on the 15-day injured list due to right forearm inflammation. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said it’s unlikely Gonsolin pitches again during the 2023 season, and Pepiot is among the candidates to take the fifth spot in the starting rotation.
So too is Ryan Yarbrough, who pitched three scoreless innings out of the bullpen. Yarbrough has been utilized in a swingman role since being acquired at the trade deadline, which the Dodgers value and thus Roberts conceded may give them some pause with moving the left-hander into the starting rotation.
Whereas Dodgers relievers fared well, David Robertson failed to protect the Marlins’ lead. James Outman’s walk was followed by a Kiké Hernández single that put runners at the corners.
Austin Barnes’ safety bunt tied the game and Mookie Betts provided the Dodgers with a decided lead on his two-run single.
With only using four pitchers — two of whom are pseudo starters — the Dodgers bullpen is in good standing heading into the second game of the doubleheader at Dodger Stadium.
Julio Urías is starting the nightcap of the twin bill.
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