Bumming Out Mad Bum

No one was sure how the games between the Dodgers and the Giants would play out.  Suddenly the Dodgers had gotten a second wind after the All Star Break and the Giants had seemed to tank.  We could only hope that this would continue.  On the road the last few days, the Dodgers had become an offensive powerhouse with homerun after homerun.  I had my fingers crossed.

I’ve had problems with my right knee.  I had twisted it at work and it had become gradually worse.  I finally went to a doctor who promptly put me off work.  Everyone would think that’s a good thing but not so good when it’s difficult to walk.  Getting from point A to point B has become a huge obstacle.  I will never take my mobility or my health for granted ever again.  That being said, I geared myself up for a long homestand.  Certain brave people have asked me why I don’t just stay home.  Seriously?  That isn’t even an option.  I will support my Dodgers even if I have to crawl into the stadium.

Our only reliable pitcher Kenta Maeda was the starting pitcher but he was pitted against Madison Bumgarner, the Giants ace.  The Dodgers had not won a game against him since May of last year.

It was early batting practice as usual.  There were some new faces out on the field:  Charlie Culberson and Andrew Toles were back up from minors.  Yes, that is Josh throwing the ball toward us.  Duck!!!  How do you like the striped socks?  I love them.
Back at the dugout Orel Hersheiser and Julio Urias were having a nice chat.  Orel can be so funny.  Julio signed some autographs while he talked to Orel.
I really missed the food in the club and couldn’t wait to eat.  The Szechuan chicken was delicious and not too spicy.  The sirloin was amazing.  They also were serving my favorite fully loaded macaroni salad.  The shrimp pasta was a perfect balance.  I almost forgot how sore my knee was.
It was amazingly comforting to see Yaz going through his usual ritual before stretching.  I am counting down the remaining games left in the season.  We just got the invoice for postseason tickets.  Gulp!!!  It’s a little less than $3000 if the Dodgers go to the World Series.  Wait a minute…Yaz isn’t drinking his favorite pink drink.  What is going on here?  Don’t change your routine Yaz!!
Let’s take another look…let’s sip and swish.  It’s weird when the guys change up their routine.  It left me a little off.  Maybe that’s why he couldn’t get a hit during the game and the reason why he and Kenta didn’t seem to be on the same page part of the game.  Just saying.  Is he giving me stink eye?
Speaking of Kenta Maeda..here he is crossing the field with Will, his translator.
A few views of his famous whirlwind routine
Alanna Rizzo and Orel Hersheiser were interviewing Julio Urias for Sportsnet.  
Back to Kenta.  The giveaway of the day were Dodger headphones as you can see in the background.
Taking a closer look at the ball
Nice to see my favorite policeman, Asher.  Do not run on the field or you will have to deal with him.  Fair warning.
I was happy to see my buddy Jack again.  He always makes my day.
Rob Segedin was brought up from minors.  It coincided with the pending birth of his son Robinson.  The birth has been pending for a couple of days.  Hopefully by the time you read this, it will have happened.  He has been a nice surprise since coming up.
Rounding out the starting lineup was Charlie Culberson.  We missed him…probably the nicest Dodger of all.
He and Kike seemed to be doing a bit of bonding.  Kike was also starting since he seems to do well against left handed pitchers.  It’s another lefty-righty thing.
A little catch among friends.  
Kike has just not looked like himself since he cut his hair.
What do you think?  I thought his long hair was his trademark.  Do you see the smiley face on his shoes?
Jesse Chavez is definitely giving me a look.
I have to fit in a picture of Andrew Toles and Corey, probably the rookie of the year and possibly MVP.
Justin Turner
The guys must have had a pact that none of them would sign autographs before the game maybe to keep their concentration.  Charlie did throw a ball to someone.
Kenta made his way down the field with my cheers.  I was a fan club of one since my buddy Yoshiko was again with her puppy.  Poor forgotten me. Sad face.
Corey made one dash out to the field and then ran into the dugout without looking at the fans.
The umpires and Dave had a good laugh before the game.  Always friends until the first review.
And Kenta prepared to pitch: praying, meditating, kicking the dirt.
Stretching, making sure home plate was still there…
A few words of advice from Justin…don’t get a blister.
And then first pitch.  Kenta got out of the first inning with only a single to Denard Span.
In the bottom of the first inning, Madison Bumgarner had to get that first snot rocket out.  There.  Done.  Feeling better.
Have to wipe it off on the sleeve first.  
Let’s see what this Corey guy can do.
What??? He hit a double??  WTF!!
I’m not happy.
And Justin getting a base hit, scoring Corey is not making it any better.  1-0.
That single hit by Adrian Gonzalez bringing Justin to second was the worst.  However the inning ended with Yasmani grounding out.  I knew not having that pink drink would come back to him.  Never change your routine!!!
The Giants were out in order in the 2nd inning.

Rob Segedin, a new father or maybe not yet, hit a huge homerun to left center field.  2-0.  That’s for baby Robinson.
The 3rd inning was a little dicey for Kenta with Joe Panik hitting a single, Denard Span walking, Angel Pagan singling with Joe scoring.  2-1.  Buster Posey hit a base hit scoring Denard Span tying the score. 2-2.  

Corey again got to Mad Bum in the 3rd inning with a single.
And Justin also singled with Corey going to 3rd.
Adrian hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Corey.
In the top of the 4th inning, Eduardo Nunez walked, Joe Panik walked, Nunez to 2nd.
With Mad Bum batting, Nunez was caught trying to steal 3rd base.  And to make Mad more mad, he struck out.
Not happy.  Not a good outing for him.
In the top of the 5th inning, it was a potluck of occurrences:  Angel Pagan singled, wild pitch by Kenta sent Pagan to 2nd.  Brandon Belt hit a double scoring Angel Pagan tying the score.  Sheesh not again.  Brandon Crawford was purposefully walked.  Is that a word?  There was another wild pitch by Kenta with Belt to 3rd and Crawford to 2nd.  As I said before, Kenta and Yasmani were not on the same page.  I won’t mention the not-pink drink again.  The inning ended with a huge strike out by Hunter Pence.  That was the turning point of the game, IMO.

All that action in the top of the 5th inning must have done a number on poor Madison because it only got worse.

Kike hit a single but was out at second after a ground out to Howie.  Howie on first.

Ho hum. 

Corey drew a walk, Howie to 2nd.
Justin hit a single, Howie to 3rd, Corey to 2nd.
Corey…you ‘re supposed to be on 2nd.
What the heck is going on??
Adrian singled scoring Howie and Corey. 5-3.
Jesse Chavez replaced Kenta in the top of the 6th inning.  Nunez singled after it hit Jesse in the leg.  Ouch.  Nunez stole 2nd base with Joe Panik batting.  Finally Madison was replaced by pinch hitter Ehire Adrianza.  He promptly singled scoring Nunez.  5-4.  Adam Liberatore replaced Chavez.  Span hit into a double play which ended the inning.  Heart attack time.

In the bottom of the 6th inning, Chase Utley singled.  Chase has been nursing a sore foot which is why he didn’t start.  That didn’t stop him from going all out.  Andrew Toles replaced Liberatore as a pinch hitter and immediately hit a double scoring Chase.  Watching Chase run the bases, no one would guess he had a sore foot.    6-4.

Kike singled, scoring Andrew 7-4.
In the top of the 7th inning with Joe Blanton pitching, the Giants were out in order.  The Dodgers also were out in order.

In the 8th inning there were many substitutions:  Howie went from left field to 2nd base.  Rob went from right to left field. Josh Reddick replaced Chase Utley at 2nd, playing right field.  Later Joc replaced Joe Blanton playing center.  Got all that?  If you did, here’s another…. Kenley Jansen replaced Joe Blanton to make the last 4 outs.

Are we all confused now?
Then Andrew Toles switched from center to left field.  All set.

In the 8th inning, Josh Reddick walked.  Andrew Toles hit a two run homerun scoring Josh.  9-4.  Corey singled, Justin walked.  They were left on base when Adrian struck out swinging.  

When the score looks like that you feel pretty confident. Right?
Then Denard Span hit a homerun.  What???  9-5.

Revised score.
Let’s get this done Kenley.  The game seemed to go on and on.  It was almost 10:30 before the game was over!  We were all tired.
And this is the fast way out of the dugout.  Be careful guys.
And it was a satisfying win against the Giants. Rob Segedin and Andrew Toles both hit homeruns. Corey went 3 for 4 with 3 runs scored.  Adrian had 3 RBI’s.  Kenta was able to get his 12th win.  The Dodgers were able to extend their lead to 2 games over the Giants.
Wednesday the starting pitchers will be Johnny Cueto 14-3 ERA 2.90, a formidable opponent and newly acquired Rich Hill who has not pitched yet although he has been a Dodger since the trade deadline.  He has been on DL with blisters.  

Thank you to everyone for stopping by.  These games are exciting.  As it’s getting close to the end of the season, every game counts.  Let’s all support our guys.  GO DODGERS!!!  BEAT THE GIANTS!!!

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