Adrian Gonzalez reacts after striking out against the Marlins, the Dodgers… (Harry How / Getty Images )
The Dodgers are delivering on the promise they made in their marketing slogan. This is "A Whole New Blue."
These Dodgers have hit depths unknown to them even during their 10 months in bankruptcy, their 5-4 defeat against a group of no-names wearing Miami Marlins uniforms Friday night extending their losing streak to eight games.
The last time the Dodgers lost eight consecutive games was in 2008. That losing streak was immediately followed by an eight-game winning streak and those Dodgers went on to win the National League West. But that team had arguably the league's best hitter in Manny Ramirez, who wouldn't test positive for banned substances until the following season.
BOX SCORE: Miami 5, Dodgers 4
"Negative breeds negative, that's for sure," Manager Don Mattingly said. "Momentum builds one way or another. We see it in all kinds of sports. So, yes, it is hard. We have to fight."
Zack Greinke's anticipated return from shoulder surgery Wednesday should help. But considering how Greinke pitched for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga on Friday night, the last-place Dodgers have to be uncertain of exactly what to expect. The $147-million right-hander was charged with eight runs (three earned) and six hits over 4 1/3 innings.
Greinke is expected to take the rotation spot of rookie Matt Magill, who gave up three runs over five innings to a Miami team that has the NL's worst record (11-25) and does not have slugger Giancarlo Stanton, on the disabled list with a strained hamstring.
The runs charged to Magill all scored on a single swing, a three-run home run by Derek Dietrich in the fourth inning. Dietrich, a 23-year-old second baseman, made his major league debut only two days earlier.
Dietrich's home run canceled out a three-run homer by Adrian Gonzalez in the first inning. The home run was the fourth of the season for Gonzalez, who aggravated a neck strain on Wednesday and was listed as day-to-day.
That would be the last time the Dodgers would have Marlins rookie flamethrower Jose Fernandez in trouble until they put men on first and second with no outs in the fifth inning. But Juan Uribe was picked off second base and the Dodgers failed to score.
"That was definitely a momentum changer," Mattingly said. "We kind of shot ourselves in the foot."
The Dodgers loaded the bases with two outs in sixth, but pinch-hitter Tim Federowicz flied out to center.
Fernandez, whose electric fastball touched 98 mph, was charged with three runs and eight hits in six innings.
The maddeningly inconsistent Ronald Belisario was on the mound when the Marlins took a 5-3 lead in the seventh inning. Belisario gave up a leadoff single to Rob Brantly, then served up a near-home run to pinch-hitter Chris Coghlan. The ball hit the top of the center-field wall and was ruled a double, a decision that stood after a video review by umpires.
That left the Marlins with men on second and third base. Both would score. Brantly was driven in by former Dodgers outfielder Juan Pierre's single to left. Coghlan came home when Adeiny Hechavarria grounded into a double play.
The Dodgers got a run back in the eighth when Matt Kemp singled, stole second and scored on A.J. Ellis' single.