Takeaways from the Game

I’ve realized this season that you cannot leave the game early.  Ever.  Even if it seems that everything has failed, it never is over for our 2017 Dodgers.  They are playing already as though the title is at stake and it’s not even halfway through the season.  These guys do not give up.  The D Backs are the 2nd place team but were swept unceremoniously by the 1st place Dodgers making the D Backs look  like a last place team.  Decisions made by their management made them look worse than they actually are.  

The day was beautiful.  It had started out hot but cooled down.  It still was quite humid but bearable since the sun had gone down.  The team was out on the field stretching and fielding balls.   It was Dave Roberts bobblehead day so it was crowded with fans I have never seen before.  How they all got MVP cards is a mystery.  Season ticket holders have MVP cards which entitles them to attend early batting practice and get discounts on merchandise purchased in the on site stores.  The players pretty much stay away from the crowds on days like this.  Kenley is still trying to make amends with the fans after going off on them for not voting so he posed for pics and signed autographs.  All the other players carried on the business of the day by stretching and warming up.  It is annoying to keep hearing “Could you sign this.  Could I have your autograph.  Can I have the ball.  Can I Can I Can I.  I wanted to hurry to 2nd floor to see if I could get Trayce’s 4th of July jersey to go with the hat I had gotten the day before so I gladly left the field.
I was relieved to find out it wasn’t sold yet.  I thanked Max and hurried off with my purchase.  I was hoping to get it signed along with the hat.  I’m not good with autographs.  I rarely get any because I have a fear of rejection and it stresses me out.  People find it hard to understand that.  I have a good rapport with the players because I don’t bother them with requests.  I went to the Club to eat first and to gather up enough courage to go out to the field.

The food was tasty.  I enjoyed the Kentucky hot brown turkey with bacon, sliced tomatoes and creamy bechamel.  The Moroccan leg of lamb was served with tagine sauce.  I munched on the Tagliatelle Bolognese enjoying every bite.  Their pasta is always delicious.  I gathered enough courage to go back to the field.  Food always does that for me.  My dream partner would be someone who can cook.  
Jerry Hairston and Clayton Kershaw were being interviewed on SportsNet.
Rich Hill and Austin Barnes were warming up down the field.
I had Trayce’s jersey and hat.  I was sure he was avoiding eye contact.  I think maybe I was being a little paranoid.
The others came out one by one.  My eyes were on Trayce wishing and hoping.
The day was beautiful but I was too stressed out at this point to really enjoy it.
Everyone thinks it’s so weird that I don’t get autographs.  Here’s the thing…I don’t enjoy asking them.  I don’t think that it’s their job to sign. It’s their job to win games and take us to the World Series.  I started to get a team ball signed early in the season and then I decided I wasn’t enjoying it. I have a total of 4 autographs on it before I put it away.  So why do I do it.  Good question.  I had it in my mind that Trayce wouldn’t mind signing for me.  
National Anthem time

It was sung by Dave Roberts’s daughter Emme.  She did a wonderful job.  What a voice.  I know Dave was a proud papa.
The players went back to stretching.  They went in one by one without signing…Justin, Logan, Chris.  I told my friends I knew Trayce wasn’t going to sign, that it was ok.  I would live.  They told me to hold up my jersey.  I decided I didn’t want the autograph after all.  I’m so chicken.
I thought I would fall through the cement floor when he came right up to me and signed the jersey and the hat.  Of course, with my $#%^&& luck, the silver pen looked terrible on the number.  My friends told me to have him sign it again later. I said “ARE YOU KIDDING?”  Then he had to sign everyone else’s stuff.  I felt so guilty and embarrassed.  I will never get another autograph.  

Sorry Trayce.  No more autographs.  I promise.
The final player Yasiel went in without signing.  It was only Trayce who signed and it was because of my jersey.  I felt like I had imposed on him.  It’s not really his thing to sign or take selfies.  
Robert, Carol and little Elsa.  I didn’t know Lucas was hiding his face.  Little rascal!!
Rich and Austin walked that familiar stretch of dirt to the dugout.  
First pitch.  Rich pitched 7 innings with 9 strikeouts, possibly his best game so far this season.  He’s starting to look as good as he did last season.
In the top of the 1st inning, David Peralta singled but was left on base.  

In the bottom of the 1st inning, Justin walked
Chris Taylor hit a single to center.  This was the first of 4 hits for him this game.


Austin walked
Justin went to 3rd and Chris went to 2nd.
Kike ground into a double play.  3 out.  Missed opportunity.  Big disappointment.
In the top of the 2nd inning, Brandon Drury reached 1st on a throwing error by Justin…very unusual for Justin but was left on base.  Maybe it was the excitement of making the All Star Team.  Congratulations Justin and Kourtney.

The Dodgers were out in order in the bottom of the 2nd.

In the top of the 3rd inning,  the D Backs were out in order.

In the bottom of the 3rd inning, Logan singled but was caught stealing at 2nd for the 3rd out.  Oh well!!  Starting to get frustrating!!
In the top of the 4th inning, David Peralta was hit by a pitch and went to 1st.  That was the D Backs only action that inning.

In the bottom of the 4th inning Chris hit a ground rule double but was left on base.
Chris certainly had Robbie Ray’s number.  Ray reportedly has a bit of a temper.  I’m sure he wasn’t thinking good thoughts about Chris.
In the top of the 5th inning, Rich Hill made a mistake and allowed a solo homerun to Jake Lamb.  0-1.  It was his only mistake.

In the bottom of the 5th inning Logan hit a solo homerun tying the score.  1-1.
In the top of the 6th inning the D Backs were again out in order.

In the bottom of the 6th inning Justin walked.  Chris hit the 3rd of his 4 hits with a double to right field.  Kike walked but was left on base.  Missed opportunity again.

In the top of the 7th inning the D Backs were out in order.  In the bottom of the 7th inning Scott Van Slyke walked.  Yes, he’s back. Scotty however was picked off 1st base.  Corey walked and then Justin struck out leaving Corey on base.  Another missed opportunity.

In the top of the 8th inning, Luis Avilan replaced Rich Hill.  Big mistake.  Jake Lamb hit a solo homerun.  1-2.  Dodgers again were in a hole.  Ketel Marte also hit a solo homerun making the score 1-3.  My thought was to get Avilan out of the game before he did more damage.

Avilan left replaced by Brandon Morrow who also made us fans hyperventilate.  AJ Pollock singled to left field.  Paul Goldschmidt singled to left as well.  Both were left on base when Chris Owings struck out.  The damage was already done.  Here it was the 8th inning and. The Dodgers were behind.  In the bottom of the 8th inning the Dodgers were out in order.  I saw people packing up and leaving.  I wanted to tell them that the game wasn’t over, that they may regret taking an early exit.
In the top of the 9th inning Josh Fields replaced Brandon Morrow.  Chris Ianetta immediately hit a double to left field.  Chris Lamb was intentionally walked.  There was a balk against Fields while pitching to Ketel.  Ianetta scored making it 1-4.  Even more “fans” left the stadium.  I had my eye on the exit but didn’t leave.  I had a feeling…..!

The Dodgers’ luck changed in the bottom of the 9th inning when Fernando Rodney came in to close the game.  

Yasiel singled to right field.
Pinch hitter Joc Pederson walked.
Pinch hitter Cody Bellinger also walked.  Rodney couldn’t find the strike zone, lucky for the Dodgers.  Thank you baseball gods.
Ummm.  Hey Rodney…what’s the dealio?
Logan walked scoring Yasiel.  2-4.  We fans were on our feet.  We were given a gift.
Hmmm.  What to do.  Should I walk or try to hit the ball?
Corey singled to center field scoring Joc and Cody TYING THE GAME!!!  Who would have predicted this??  4-4.  These are our Dodgers this season.  They have championship team written all over them.  They NEVER give up.
Why the D Backs manager left Rodney in the game is beyond me.  He was stinking it up for his team.  Apparently this is what he is known for.  By the time he was replaced by TJ McFarland before the single by Chris,  there was no taking back what had already transpired.

Another big mistake…Justin Turner was walked so they could pitch to Chris Taylor.  Let’s count how many hits Chris has had this game.  Let’s also count how many grand slams he has had this season and also how many walk offs.  And they still chose to pitch to Chris.  Stupid stupid stupid but lucky lucky lucky for the Dodgers.  Chris is not an imposing guy at 6’1″ 195 pounds but he can hit the skin off the ball.
True to form, Chris hit a line drive single over the head of left fielder Rey Fuentes scoring Logan.  5-4.  Another walk off for Chris.

We fans were screaming with excitement.  How did this happen??  The Dodgers ran on the field to pound on Chris, his reward for being the hero.   He had the obligatory Gatorade poured over him with Alanna Rizzo barely escaping.
Things to take away from the game?  Do not ever leave early.  For me…no more autographs.  Not worth the stress.  D Backs…do not pitch to Chris Taylor.  He will ruin you.

The Dodgers are now tied with the Astros with the most games won in baseball at 58.  They are now 5 1/2 games ahead of the D Backs, 8 1/2 ahead of the Rockies.  

Kenta Maeda 6-4 ERA 4.56 will face Royals Jason Hammel 4-7 ERA 5.08 on Friday.   It is the first of 3 games against the Kansas City Royals.  All three games have different start times.  Friday 7:10, Saturday 4:15, Sunday the dreaded 1:10.  It is predicted that it will be 93 degrees on Saturday and 89 degreees on Sunday.  Yikes!!! 

Thanks for stopping by.  GO DODGERS!!!  Next week will be All Star break..halfway through the season already.  Where has the time gone??  It’ll be Christmas pretty soon.

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