The Los Angeles Dodgers (9-4) capped off their recent nine-game road trip with a 7-6 win over the San Diego Padres (7-6) on Wednesday.
The Dodgers were in control most of the way, but a late surge forced the game down to a throw to home from left field in the bottom of the ninth by Chris Taylor to prevent the tying run and end the game.
In the top of the second inning, Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson put the game’s first points on the board when he blasted a two-run home run shot to left center field, bringing in Taylor.
Their lead expanded in the fifth as Will Smith brought Pederson home with a double and Kike Hernandez returned the favor to Smith when he drove him in with a ground ball single along the baseline to make it 4-0.
The Padres finally got on the board in the bottom of the fifth when young phenom Fernando Tatis Jr. launched a 430-foot home run to left field and closed the gap to 4-2.
The hit was impressive, but not enough to faze the Dodgers who went right back to work in the sixth with back-to-back singles from Corey Seager and Chris Taylor, which Pederson followed up with his second home run of the night to bring them home and regain control 7-2.
While the Dodgers had regained the momentum, the Padres chipped at their lead with two runs in the sixth with the combination of a Greg García double and an error from Kike Henandez, who inadvertantly hit first baseman Max Muncy on a throw to home.
Two innings later and a solo home run from Padres first baseman Will Meyers, and the Dodgers lead had shrunk to two runs, 7-5.
In the bottom of the ninth, with Dodgers closer Kenley Jensen on the mound in an attempt to seal the deal, and the Padres at the top of their batting order, San Diego managed to get runners on first and third.
Padres left fielder Tommy Pham brought in the run from third with a single to right field.
With the go-ahead runs on base and one out, Manny Machado took to the batter’s box across from his former teammate Jensen with a chance to win the game.
Machado hit a line drive to left field which Taylor caught in stride before he launched a 93.3 mile per hour throw to home to prevent the tying run. The toss was a perfect one hop throw to catcher Will Smith who made the sweep tag on Trent Grisham sliding into home to complete the double play and close out the game.
GAME. OVER. pic.twitter.com/rBVrFoZHYB
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) August 6, 2020
“Chris has done so much to help us win baseball games,” said manager Dave Roberts in his postgame conference. “He’s a manager’s dream, he’s always ready when called upon and just seems to impact the game any time he’s in there.”
The Dodgers now return to Los Angeles for a seven-game home stand, starting with their second series against the San Francisco Giants on Friday at 6:40 p.m.
Santa Clarita residents can tune into all Dodger home games live on KHTS Radio, FM 98.1 and AM 1220.
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