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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Alexander: Dodgers’ bullpen game not enough in NLCS opener

The best plans, and all that.

For more than eight innings, it did Saturday nights go as planned for manager Dave Roberts and the Dodgers in suburban Atlanta. He used another bullpen game, and the relievers mostly did their job. And he had a go-ahead run apparently toward third base in the ninth inning, and he probably had the vision in his head that Max Schaezer, Walker Buehler and Julio Uriás were ready to pitch the next three games, with the Braves going on this series. Won’t be coming back to Cobb County.

Baseball is polite. Just when you think you figured it out, you don’t.

Chris Taylor made third in the ninth inning between second and third because, indecision can kill you. Taylor scored the second, but was blocked about a third of the way between base by pinch-hitter Cody Bellinger’s single to the right, mainly because former teammate Jock Pedersen was charging the ball hard and probably from shallow right field. Would have thrown Taylor out at third base anyway. .

Taylor said after the game, it was “a bad read”, and he and Roberts agreed that if he had to do it again, he would have finished second.

“Book wise, he probably should have stayed,” Roberts said in the Truist Park interview room. “It hit softly, it was towards the gap. And so I thought, you know, they thought they had a good, good read on it. It’s one of those where you get to choose. You Either going to work hard – and I don’t know if Jock would have moved up there to third and just conceded that ground – or just give Mookie (Bates) a chance to catch up with two outs. But I think that’s where he got stuck in the middle and that’s kind of what happens when you’re in trouble.”

It hurt as it enabled the Braves to get out of the innings at the sometimes shaky close, Will (The Elder) Smith. And Blake Trainen — with Kenley Jensen switching positions and pitching ninth — dropped the second RBI of the night’s Austin Riley, down the left field line to score Ozzy Albiz from second and win 3–2 for Atlanta. a bullet.

The matchup resulted in Trennan being ninth and Jensen eighth, Roberts conceded. If at times it seems that managers act out of desperation when changing long-established patterns, it is usually more of an all-hands-on mindset based on squeezing as little strategic advantage as possible whenever possible. Is. (Often, as mentioned earlier, in consultation with the front office and analytics department. When this doesn’t work, of course, the manager is most to blame.)

This time it didn’t work, but it’s not destructive. It’s a best-of-seven series, the Dodgers still have a pitching advantage over the next three games, and you might remember how the last series started against the team with the best game record.

(And time for sudden thought: What’s more annoying, “Beat L.A.” or that unbearable tomahawk chop? At least the former only offends people who live in L.A.)

Roberts’ plan worked until it did, and some of it may have had to do with another mediocre offensive night. The Dodgers may have led the Giants 18-10 in the previous series, but 16 of those runs came in two games, a continuation of the bounce-or-bust approach that is often the most to see a team winning more than 100. makes it disappointing. Baseball History.

He has now scored two runs or less in four of the seven matches he has played later this season. And the Dodgers absolutely miss an injured Max Muncie bat in the middle of their lineup. Muncie was left out of the roster for the series when it was presented on Saturday.

World Nation News Desk
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