J.D. Martinez hit a third home run in the past two games but the Los Angeles Dodgers needed a walk-off RBI single from Max Muncy to defeat the Detroit Tigers, 3-2. The Dodgers clinched a series victory and extended their winning streak to five games.
Caleb Ferguson started as an opener for the fifth time this season and allowed a solo home run while also striking out three in the first inning. Parker Meadows then hit a solo homer off Ryan Pepiot in the third inning that extended the Tigers’ lead to 2-0.
Martinez led off the bottom of the fourth with his 29th home run of the season. Jason Heyward nearly put the Dodgers ahead with an opposite-field drive but it was caught on the warning track to end the sixth inning.
The Tigers continued to successfully navigate a bullpen game that included getting out of a jam in the seventh inning. A pitching change was greeted by Mookie Betts hitting a single to put two on with one out, but the Dodgers’ rally ended when Freddie Freeman hit into a double play.
Freeman finished the night 2-for-5 and hit his 56th double of the year. He’s also just two away from reaching 200 hits in a single season for the first time in his career. Freeman already has produced his first season with at least 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases.
While the Dodgers’ offense was struggling to overcome their deficit, Ryan Pepiot turned in another encouraging outing. Pitching in a bulk role out of the bullpen for a third time in six games with L.A. this season, Pepiot got through six innings with just the solo homer allowed.
The Dodgers at last broke through in the bottom of the eighth despite the Tigers turning to closer Alex Lange. Chris Taylor, who entered as a pinch-runner for Martinez, immediately stole second base. That paid off as David Peralta’s slicing blooper landed just fair for a ground-rule RBI double that tied the game and snapped his 0-for-19 drought.
Muncy’s heroics were set up by Mookie Betts’ one-out single and Will Smith getting hit by a pitch.
Dodgers magic number for postseason bracket
Although the Milwaukee Brewers won, the Dodgers’ magic number to clinch at least the No. 2 seed in the National League postseason bracket was lowered to three.
They mathematically can still catch the Atlanta Braves for the best record in the NL, but the Dodgers are 3.5 games back.
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