Dodgers right fielder Andre Ethier makes a sliding catch during the sixth… (Gue Ruelas / Associated…)
Wild, wacky, and in the way things have continued to go for the Dodgers this season, ultimately wonderful.
Frustrated and angry over a tying run that was removed on a questionable appeal play, the Dodgers rallied Sunday to tie the game, 1-1, in the bottom of the ninth before winning, 2-1, on a Tony Gwynn triple and Dee Gordon single in the 10th before an announced Dodger Stadium crowd of 53,504.
The Dodgers had helped the White Sox score their only run in the sixth on an error by left fielder Elian Herrera, and Chicago repaid the favor in the 10th.
Gwynn hit a sinking liner to Jordan Danks that the left fielder mistakenly decided to dive for, though he appeared to have no chance at the catch. Maybe he had watched Andre Ethier make similar plays in right for the Dodgers all day a tad too much.
The ball went into the left-field corner and Gwynn scurried to third. With two outs, Gordon singled sharply to left off Matt Thornton and all that pain the Dodgers had experienced earlier was erased.
The Dodgers appeared headed for a difficult 1-0 loss and a wasted gem by left-hander Chris Capuano after they scored in the bottom of the sixth. And then didn’t.
Runs don’t count when umpires say they don’t, much to Manager Don Mattingly’s dismay. That would be dismay, as in the you’ve-got-to-me-kidding-me variety.
Mattingly, as hot as he’s ever been as the Dodgers manager, was ejected after arguing – and arguing – with Jerry Meals after the third base umpire ruled Matt Treanor left too early on a sacrifice fly and called him out on appeal.
The Dodgers ended up tying the game in the bottom of the ninth when pinch-hitter Bobby Abreu led off with a base hit against White Sox closer Addison Reed.
After Gordon struck out attempting to bunt Abreu over – for now, the Dodgers should just give up asking him to bunt – Herrera singled Abreu to third.
Juan Rivera lifted a fly deep enough to right to sacrifice Abreu home to tie it, and the Dodgers had their first run in 14 innings.
The Dodgers, of course, thought they should have won in regulation after Treanor surprised White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana – excellent in just his fifth major league start – with a bunt single in the sixth.
Capuano’s bunt sacrificed Treanor to second and he took third on Gordon’s infield hit off Quintana’s glove.
That’s when Herrera lifted a fly to fairly shallow right field. Runs suddenly hard to come by, third base coach Tim Wallach had Treanor tag. Right-fielder Alex Rios’ throw was on line and on a hop, but catcher Tyler Flowers could not come up with the ball as Treanor crossed home with what should have been the tying run.
The White Sox threw to third to appeal, and Meals – who did not even appear to be looking at Treanor when Rios made the catch – called him out. Replays indicated Treanor had not left early.
This brought Mattingly out from the dugout to protest, which got him nowhere with Meals. He started walking back to the dugout, said something more over his shoulder and Meals tossed him.
Now Mattingly really went off, getting in Meals' face, and after this went on for a while and home plate umpire Gary Darling came over, into his too. A couple of times, Darling turned to walk back to the plate and Mattingly jumped in front of him to share some more of his not-so-private thoughts.
Maybe Mattingly just doesn’t like his parents. He’s now been thrown out on both Mother's Day and Father’s Day.
He had reason to be upset, of course, the Dodgers nearly wasting a 12-strikeout performance from Capuano.
The game’s first run came in the top of the sixth when Brent Lillibridge led off with a single to left and Herrera – suddenly looking uncomfortable in the outfield – did not get the ball in front of him, letting it skip under his glove for an error as Lillibridge took second.
A groundout moved him to third and Dayan Viciedo’s single scored him. They let that run count.
Quintana shut the Dodgers down for his eight innings. He needed only 77 pitches to do it, too. He gave up only five hits, struck out six and did not walk a batter.
He had to be that good, too, because Capuano was on his game. Supported by three strong catches in right by Ethier, Capuano held the White Sox to six hits and one walk. The 12 strikeouts was one shy of his career high.
Ronald Belisario (3-0) picked up the victory with two scoreless innings.
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