Dodgers run of streaks strikes St. Louis
By Cary Osborne
We started this week with streaks and enter the weekend on the same topic.
Justin Turner has hit home runs in consecutive games. His ninth-inning solo homer gave the Dodgers a 3-2 lead against the Cardinals on Friday in St. Louis. That was before the Cardinals tied the score in the bottom of the ninth with a Jedd Gyorko solo home run and won the game 4-3 in the 16th with a Matt Adams walk-off homer.
Corey Seager returned from his bout with the flu that cost him the entire Washington Series and hit safely in his first four plate appearances. Counting the last time he played on Sunday in Arizona, Seager had hits in seven consecutive plate appearances. He flew out in the top of the ninth to fall one short of the most consecutive hits by a rookie since 1974 (according to Stats, LLC), a mark held by Texas’ Oddibe McDowell (July 22-23, 1985).
Howie Kendrick hit a solo home run in the top of the sixth inning off Michael Wacha, extending his hitting streak to 14 games. Kendrick was batting .235 when the streak began on July 1. After Friday’s game, he’s now hitting .272.
Adam Liberatore entered in the seventh with a runner on and one out after starter Brandon McCarthy cramped up in the swampy St. Louis heat. After a fly out and two singles, the Cardinals had the bases loaded, but the left-hander induced a ground out by pinch-hitter Greg Garcia. It was the 28th straight game that Liberatore had not allowed a run— which was also the longest run of the great Mariano Rivera’s career. Liberatore is now 10 games away from tying the Major League record set by Craig Kimbrel in 2011.
Then there was McCarthy.
In each of his four games since returning from Tommy John surgery, he has pitched into the fifth inning or later and given the Dodgers a chance to win every time. This was his longest outing since he returned on July 3.
McCarthy went 6 1/3 innings, walked three and allowed one hit and one earned run while striking out four. That one hit, a single by Aledmys Diaz in the bottom of the third, plated two — the second coming around when Joc Pederson overran the ball in center field.
Opposing hitters are batting .122 (9 for 74) against McCarthy this season.
Kenley Jansen was one out away from picking up his second save in as many days, but Gyorko homered in the bottom of the ninth inning to tie the score 3-3.
After Jansen, five Dodger relievers combined on five scoreless innings of relief to take the Dodgers to the 16th inning tied 3-3 with the Cardinals.
Dodger reliever Grant Dayton made his big league debut, after seven minor league seasons, and retired all six batters he faced in the 11th and 12th innings, striking out two batters.