Sunday, July 05, 2009

Post-Game 82 Thread: How To Blow A Five-Run Lead, And Still Barely Win


PETCO Park is the pitcher-friendliest park in the majors, yet that didn't stop the Dodgers from hitting four home runs today:

Andre Ethier in the second.

Casey Blake in the third.

Chad Billingsley (!) in the fifth (shown: his double in the third inning).

James Loney in the 13th.

Newly minted All-Star Billingsley's final line: 8.0 IP, 4H, 3 ER, 5K, 97 pitches; at the plate: double, HR.

Unfortunately, the Dodgers let the Padres score FIVE runs in the bottom of the ninth to tie the score at 6-6. Jonathan Broxton, who entered the game in relief of Billingsley with none out in the ninth, was wild, but for some reason Joe Torre let Broxton (and Dodger fans) suffer through 38 pitches, many of them wild, while the Padres clawed their way back.

After trading scoreless frames and sneaky escapes, Free James Loney led off the 13th inning with a home run deep to right, and that was the ballgame. Jeff Weaver, not Chad Billingsley, gets the win. The Dodgers get a series victory against the woeful Padres and keep a 7.5 game lead, going into a day off.

But don't say the Dodgers didn't try to give this game away. We're lucky to escape with a win today, and a series win. Rest up, Manny!

photos by Denis Poroy/AP. GT by Orel and Sax.


Nic j said...

Broxton gets credited with the blown PGT.

Orel said...

The worst stat of all!

Nic j said...

at least we are done with those damn red hats till sept.

Dusty Baker said...

Sorry for off-topic, but I'm watching TB v TX. Why is it that Nolan Ryan was seemingly ageless when he played from approximately 1553 AD until a few years ago, but now that he is retired it looks like he's a 90-year old man? I mean, I heard him being interviewed and it was like an old man barely getting words past his toothless gums.

Josh S. said...

It's still early and I'm very biased, but Jeff Weaver is my choice for NL comeback player of the year.

Nic j said...

DB, i was just wondering why they were talking to Nolan Ryan's dad. He is so damn old now.

Dusty Baker said...


Seriously, it's like Nolan had a stroke almost. I'm not being mean (just this once), but it's that stark.

Dusty Baker said...

Josh S,

I was just watching Sportscenter (because clearly I haven't watched enough baseball today) and saw the wrapup of our game. I guess I got caught up in the we're winning/we're going to lose!/we won! to give Weaver the credit he deserves. So I poppsed on over here to do just that but see you were a step ahead.

Let me add my agreement to your DreamWeaver take. He has slotted in for us wherever and whenever needed. And kicked his kid brother's ass along the way!

Neeebs said...

There are going to be a few times this year that Broxton has a stinker of an outing. Today was one of those days. The good news is that we WON despite the stinker.

Steve Sax said...

I know that Brox will have an off-day every once in a while, and I understand "you go with the horses that got you here."

But anyone watching Broxton's ninth inning (38 pitches, only 19 for strikes) could see he was really off. Wide. High. In the dirt. All over the place. And at some point, in between Jon entering with a 6-2 lead, and escaping only because we nailed the go-ahed run at third with the cutoff throw, you've gotta pull the plug so that we can take the win and go home happy.

I did not agree with letting Brox simmer in his own juices out there, letting four more runs score to tie the game. Come on, Joe.

Josh S. said...

He should have been yanked after walking in the run, if not sooner.

Is there any way to see Brox's stats with men on base this season? It seems to me he's a beast (Sorry, Juan.) with nobody on, but kinda falls to pieces pitching out of the stretch.

Mr. LA Sports Fan said...

And just like that, the Padres traded Hairston to the A's.

Nic j said...

i just looked at Broxton's inning on gameday and while he was a little wild, he was getting squeezed a bit. And as to pulling him out, if Broxton is going to be one of the elite closers of the game he is going to have to learn to get out of a mess, even if he creates it. All in all it was just a bad game, we will move on.

The person i feel really bad for is Bills, he was a monster on the mound and at the plate. Is it just me or is he the first guy on the team to actually try and run some guy over at the plate, i love that.

Dusty Baker said...

Most times I would agree with idea of letting our "ace closer" get in and out of his own jam, but today, to me, he never looked like he had a sniff of control. It wasn't like he was burning them fast and hitters were getting lucky, or that a hitter dug a ball off the ground for a triple or something. He just couldn't find the plate with laser guidance. In that situation, take him out when you are still ahead. Worst case is that he feels like he had a bad day but can get 'em Tuesday. But now he has to be mad at himself, feel bad for Bills, and know it cost them several hours that tey could have already been on a plane to NY.

Fred's Brim said...

Our three best relievers each give up three earned runs in the last 2 games. I hope everybody can refocus after escaping SD. It would have been a much longer 48 hours going into Tuesday if they hadnt pulled out today's win.