Sutton said he tore the nail early in the game while digging into the ball to throw a curveball. After applying what Sutton called "Crazy Glue" to his nail, he continued pitching. But he said he tore the nail almost completely off in the sixth after Gary Carter had doubled to left.
He motioned to the Dodger dugout for Lasorda to inspect the finger. Third-base umpire Doug Harvey also took a look, and Sutton decided he could not continue.
"On the first breaking ball I threw to Carter, I had no feeling in the tip of the finger," Sutton said. "Whenever I dig in for a curveball, it popped out a little. I've had the problem since 1966 . . . "
Gooden was two years old back then and barely had all his teeth. Unlike his last start against the Dodgers, Gooden had to get by with just two runs because Met hitters could not figure out Sutton.
Unfortunately for the Dodgers, they could figure out Howell and Pena, and it resulted in another loss.
"A tough, tough loss," catcher Mike Scioscia said. "It may be really bothering us tonight, but tomorrow it'll be just another loss. This is about two games we've thrown away (to the Mets). We can't do that anymore."
Right-fielder Mike Davis, hitting just .210 and engulfed in a 2-for-33 slump, was taken out of the starting lineup for the first time this season against a right-handed starter Tuesday night. First baseman Mike Marshall, 2-for-35 recently, was benched for the first time this season. Manager Tom Lasorda met with each player before the game and explained his reasoning, which he later repeated. "We want Davis and Marshall to sit down for a game or two or three and get a chance to evaluate what's happened," Lasorda said. "It's been weighing on both their minds. They've been trying so hard. It's tough, but they understand, I hope, why I did it." Davis, admittedly frustrated by his slump, apparently was upset at his benching. He waved off reporters before the game, politely saying: "Gentleman, I do not want to talk about the lineup tonight. I just want to sit here." Marshall said he understood and supported Lasorda's move. "I've been struggling. You look at my stats and they're pretty ugly. But I was hitting the ball hard until the other night." Lasorda, asked when Marshall and Davis will return to the lineup, said: "We'll see how it goes." Both were used as pinch-hitters Tuesday, Davis striking out with a runner on third in the seventh and Marshall knocking in a run with a grounder in the 10th
A New York television crew working Tuesday night's game, continually focused in on Don Sutton's hands as he rubbed the ball prior to pitches. Sutton, accused in the past of scuffing balls, did not have his hands checked by the umpiring crew. Sutton reacted angrily when told that the cameras were focused on him. "I guess for 22 years I've misread baseball," he said, sarcastically. "Apparently, people only watch the game to watch umpires umpire and TV play Columbo. Either that, or they have idiots upstairs running that TV crew." . . . John Shelby's 7th inning single extended his hitting streak to 16 games, tying Montreal's Vance Law for the season high.