Game one of a three-game set between the Dodgers and Rockies took place Friday night, and it was certainly exciting. It sure looked like it would be a sign of things to come down the home-stretch of the regular season.
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) September 8, 2018
That is the only stat that you really need to know in this one. Clayton Kershaw got the start and had to work through some traffic all game long. He gave up six hits and allowed one walk while striking out seven. Kershaw tossed six innings and allowed two earned runs in the process. Perhaps not the elite Kershaw we know and love, but not bad for Coors Field numbers.
The bullpen was the real hero in this one though. Five different relievers combined to finish out the game strong, despite missing their closer, Kenley Jansen. Caleb Ferguson tossed 2/3 of an inning, but he did allow a few runners to reach.
Dylan Floro came on to strike out Trevor Story with the bases loaded in the seventh in relief of Ferguson. Ross Stripling made his return from the DL and got his one out that he needed. Scott Alexander got through an inning of work thanks to some great defense. And Kenta Maeda closed out the game in style.
Cody Bellinger got the offense going early, ripping a two-out double down the line in right to drive in Machado. Yasiel Puig made his triumphant return from his two-game suspension and promptly crushed a solo homerun to left the following inning.
The Dodgers then added to that total in the fifth with a series of hits and a little bit of luck. Los Angeles had a few runners move over on a controversial balk call, and Arenado made a rare throwing error. That gave them the two-run lead that they would not relinquish.
The Dodgers now sit just a half game out of first place, chasing the Rockies. Walker Buheler gets the start on Saturday evening, taking on Kyle Freeland. Freeland has started two games against Los Angeles this year and allowed five earned runs over 13.1 innings of work. Buehler has faced the Rockies three times and allowed five runs over 19 innings of work. First place could be just 24 hours away Dodgers Nation.
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