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It's stranding room only as Dodgers lose to Marlins

Wasteful Dodgers leave 16 men on base in a 6-2 loss to Miami, which hits four home runs to salvage final game of three-game series.

August 26, 2012|By Jim Peltz
  • Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly argues with home plate umpire Tony Randazzo during on a play in which runner Andre Ethier was ruled out for interference during a popup in the seventh inning Sunday.
Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly argues with home plate umpire Tony Randazzo… (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

On the morning after the Dodgers made the biggest trade in their history, Shane Victorino spoke in measured, unemotional tones.

The trade, the left fielder said, provided "no guarantees" despite the addition of another slugger, Adrian Gonzalez, to the Dodgers' lineup. "You still got to go out there and play the game," Victorino said.

Trite but true, as the Dodgers proved Sunday in losing to the last-place Miami Marlins, 6-2, at Dodger Stadium.

The Dodgers squandered numerous run-scoring opportunities and left 16 men on base.

"We gave ourselves plenty of chances, that's for sure," Manager Don Mattingly said.

Miami used four home runs to salvage the final game of a three-game series, including a two-run blast by catcher Rob Brantly, his first big league homer, in the fifth inning off Dodgers starter Aaron Harang.

The loss prevented the Dodgers from gaining ground on first-place San Francisco, which still leads them by two games in the National League West with 34 games left in the regular season. The Giants lost to Atlanta on Sunday night.

Harang (9-8) also allowed a solo home run to Giancarlo Stanton in the fourth inning, and reliever Shawn Tolleson gave up consecutive homers to Jose Reyes and Carlos Lee in the ninth.

Gonzalez and Nick Punto, who along with pitcher Josh Beckett and outfielder Carl Crawford came to the Dodgers from the Boston Red Sox in the blockbuster trade Saturday, combined for the Dodgers' first run in the first inning.

After Punto walked and moved to second base on Matt Kemp's single, Gonzalez singled in Punto, who started the game at second base.

Gonzalez came into the game batting .400 with runners in scoring position, tops in the major leagues.

But Gonzalez just missed an opportunity to drive in more runs in the eighth inning when, with the bases loaded and two outs, he hit a deep fly ball that was caught by the right fielder Stanton.

Asked if he thought he might have hit a grand slam, Gonzalez replied, "No, I hit it off the end" of the bat.

Andre Ethier's streak of 10 consecutive hits ended when he struck out in the first inning. But in the seventh inning Ethier singled home Kemp from third base with the Dodgers' second run.

Otherwise, when it came to cashing in runners "we just didn't do it," Mattingly said. "It was one of those days."

Harang allowed three runs and six hits in 51/3 innings. Marlins starter Mark Buehrle (12-11) held the Dodgers to one run and six hits in 52/3 innings.

The Dodgers will play three games against the Rockies in Colorado, then return home Thursday to play the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Scully would N.Y.

In confirming he'll return for an unprecedented 64th season next year, Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully said he'll again call only those Dodgers games in California and Arizona.

But there might be one additional stop for the 84-year-old Scully: New York.

Scully began his career calling games for the Brooklyn Dodgers, and the Dodgers are tentatively scheduled to visit Yankee Stadium next year for an interleague series. "That really gets my imagination stirring," Scully said Sunday.

In a news conference at the Dodger Stadium press box that bears his name, and with his wife, Sandra, standing nearby, Scully said, "If Sandy promises to go with me, I really would like to see Yankee Stadium and the Dodgers and the Yankees."

Scully said he decided to return next season because of "that constant love affair I have with the game. Second, I was so impressed by the [team's] new ownership.

"I heard some big talk and I wondered whether they would actually do what they said they would do," he said. "Well, they have done it 10 times.

"What they've done is revitalize the city, revitalize the team, the fans and myself," Scully said, referring to the recent major trades and player signings by Guggenheim Baseball Management, whose $2.15-billion purchase of the club closed on May 1.

"As everybody knows, they want to win and they want to win now, so I'd like to hold on with both hands and see just how far they take this ballclub," Scully said.

Scully also said he enjoys seeing everyone at Dodger Stadium at each game. "I would hate to say goodbye to all you people, and that's another reason why I'm still here and so grateful and thankful to God for the opportunity."

The Dodgers are scheduled to have a Scully bobblehead-doll promotion Thursday, which prompted him to quip, "Sometimes I think I'm a living bobblehead anyway." But, he said, "We hope to have all the family here" that night.

End of a streak

Ethier's ranchise-record-tying streak of hitting safely in consecutive at-bats ended at 10 when he took a called third strike from Buehrle in the first inning.

When Ethier got the 10th hit Saturday, it set a Los Angeles Dodgers record and tied the franchise record set by Ed Konetchy of the Brooklyn Robins in 1919.

Ethier also was involved in an unusual play in the seventh inning Sunday that still had him baffled after the game.

With Gonzalez at second base and Ethier at first, Luis Cruz hit a pop fly that catcher Brantly failed to catch along the first base line. At the same time, Ethier collided with Marlins first baseman Lee.

After the umpires held a lengthy discussion, the ball was ruled foul and Ethier was called out for interference.

"I have no idea still what happened with the play," Ethier said. The umpires, he said, "just told me I'm out — interference."

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