Marlins 6, Dodgers 2: Jose Fernandez Is the Real Deal

howell_2013-07-19

When the Dodgers went on their seemingly endless run, one of the reasons they did so was because of a bullpen that miraculously went from “atrocious” (4.66 ERA in April) to “untouchable” (1.90 ERA since the All-Star break). Part of that is simply because Matt Guerrier is gone and Brandon League was de-emphasized, but it’s also because when you’re that hot, everything’s going to go your way. Balls are going to find gloves. You’re going to end up with things like a .180 BABIP, like they’ve had since the break, and you really ought to know that such things just cannot keep up forever.

We learned that tonight in an eighth inning that saw four Dodger pitchers — including Hyun-jin Ryu leaving after retiring the first batter — turning a gap of one run into a 6-2 deficit. Chris Withrow allowed an absolutely smashed Giancarlo Stanton blast to center field (which doesn’t count against BABIP, I suppose), and then J.P. Howell faced three hitters and failed to retire any.

That sort of thing is going to happen from time to time, but it’s tough for your offense to bail you out when they’re stuck facing Jose Fernandez, who really ought to be the runaway NL Rookie of the Year in any season that doesn’t feature Yasiel Puig. Actually, he deserves the award if you base it only on tonight’s game; Puig went 0-5, striking out twice, as Fernandez (and a generous strike zone) was absolutely dominant. It’s no shame to get shut down by Fernandez, who is having one of the greatest age-20 seasons in history, but it’s not great to not be able to touch A.J. Ramos, Chad Qualls, or Steve Cishek.

The Dodgers had their best chance in the top of the fifth, when Juan Uribe and Mark Ellis led off with singles, then loaded the bases when Marlins third baseman Ed Lucas botched receiving the throw on a lousy Ryu bunt. Carl Crawford then bounced into what should have been a double play, but managed to beat the throw as Uribe scored; Puig & Adrian Gonzalez each went down swinging to end the threat, with Puig particularly unhappy about a somewhat low called strike two. (His unhappiness probably contributed to his giving the bat away, since he struck out swinging on a pitch up at his eyes.)

The Diamondbacks lost, so no ground was lost, and as you probably know, the last time the Dodgers lost twice in a row was two months ago. They looked a bit flat, and that was bound to happen; if you think otherwise, you’re fooling yourselves. Now, can they rebound tomorrow behind Chris Capuano? That’s the question.

693 comments
Jobu
Jobu

So did Puig do 100mph to get to the stadium today?

P_F_P
P_F_P

Anyone who's worried following a two-game losing streak is a fatalist and needs to get their head checked and oh crap why did I look up the Dodgers' recent September history?


LAST 10 YEARS:

2003: Dodgers start September 6-2 to get within two games of Philly and Florida for the NL Wild Card. Following a gut-punch loss to Zona on September 10th, they go into a complete tailspin and convincingly miss the playoffs.

2004: Dodgers lead the Giants by as many as 6.5 games on September 2nd, before falling to just a half-game up on September 22 and needing four come-from-behind walkoff wins in the final week to hold them off.

2005: Dodgers are still within shouting distance of shitty San Diego, 5.5 out on September 1, before completely collapsing and finishing 10-19, causing Depodesta to lose his job and be replaced with Ned.

2006: 4+1 game! Woooo oh and also the Dodgers were four games out in first on September 1 and (thanks to a number of gut-wrenching losses) finished in a tie for first with San Diego, meaning that because of head-to-head records they got the wild card (and the 97-65 Mets) while San Diego got the division title (and the 83-78 Cardinals).

2007: Once again, Dodgers are within shouting distance of both the division and the wild card in mid-September. Then, they lose both games of a doubleheader against Colorado, the last of which comes on Helton's walkoff against the previously untouchable Saito. A tailspin follows that concludes with Kent and Gonzo publically feuding with the younger players on the team.

2008: The one bright spot! Dodgers trail Arizona entering September but rally to win the division.

2009: Dodgers clinch the wild card before completion of their game on September 27. That day, they blow a huge 9th-inning lead to lose to shitty Pittsburgh, then lose the next five in a row before clinching the division on the second-to-last day of the season, giving everyone a collective heart attack.

2010: To be fair, the Dodgers were never REALLY in the race, but they played pretty shittily in September and finished well out of it.

2011: Dodgers go wild in September and finish with a respectable W-L record thanks to Matt Kemp's absolute brilliance! ...thereby saving Ned's job and preventing him from getting replaced by the new ownership.

2012: Dammit, Mellis.



...Let's just say I haven't cancelled my October plans to watch the playoffs yet.

Lobo
Lobo

So here's something fun.

My brother is joining me this year at Bama as a freshman so we got into Tuscaloosa yesterday to move in.  The first thing we did was meet with Bill Battle, our athletic director, because my mom worked with him back in the 80's (her first job out of college was for a collegiate licensing firm which he worked for and ended up owning later on).  So my mom goes back there today to give his secretary flowers as thanks for setting up the meeting and the secretary asks if they can do anything for us.  Now, my brother got stuck in the shitty dorm on campus, a traditional style all male dorm.  So my mom asked if they knew anyone in the housing office and could pull my brother out of there.  That was this morning.  My brother just got the keys to his new room, which is in the "athletic dorm" (according to NCAA rules a dorm cannot be 51% athletes so it's like 49% athletes and 51% engineering students) which was empty because it had been populated by four basketball players who left to go play ball in Europe.  They left two days ago, the room was cleaned yesterday, and so now my brother has a 4 room suite all to himself until they find him new roommates (IF they find him roommates, school starts tomorrow after all).

Moral of the story: It's all about connections apparently

KMT59
KMT59

Bill Plunkett ‏@billplunkettocr 31m

So Yasiel Puig hustled into locker room at 4:50. 35 minutes before stretch. Well after most players here. Now in mgr office with Mattingly

Detractors in 3, 2, 1...

Lobo
Lobo

@Purple Drank Evidently a pretty band one too, thinks Mattingly is always asking for bunts...

Lobo
Lobo

@KMT59 ...so he wasn't actually late.  How is that a big deal at all?

Dang88
Dang88

@Disgruntled Goat @Lobo Remember when he had Loney pay him a dime every time he flew out to left field? Oh that was fucking stupid 

Lobo
Lobo

@Disgruntled Goat @Lobo Team apparently does a little bit.  I wonder if they decided to use this as an excuse to talk to him about his occasional lack of onfield focus as well

MSTI OG
MSTI OG

He will live with exchange students lol watch I swear

Jobu
Jobu

@KMT59 Hey when do we get to the 100mph speeding ticket in Miami angle

Purple Drank
Purple Drank

@Lobo @KMT59 I don't know if he wasn't late. Stretching is different than required time to be at the stadium. Scouting reports, video review, meetings all might be happening.

MSTI OG
MSTI OG

Its awesome actually. ELD kids unite!!!!

Lobo
Lobo

@Purple Drank @Lobo @KMT59 But it specifically says "well after MOST players here."  Which to me implies that he wasn't late because not everyone was there yet