Dodgers 7, Phillies 6

Judging by these three games — especially the past two — there might be something magical beginning to materialize in these Dodgers. These two games have followed almost the same script: fall behind early, chip away, finally push the tying run across in the eighth and win it in the ninth. But the common theme to both games has been the bullpen, which has combined to pitch nine innings and give up a grand total of one hit. Jason Johnson and Chan Ho Park were the heroes tonight, delivering 2 2/3 and 2 1/3 scoreless innings, respectively, before Jonathan Broxton blew away the Phillies in the ninth. … By the way, Brad Penny’s complete meltdown tonight was totally different from his middling, five-inning performance on Friday night at San Francisco. That was about a lack of velocity. His velocity was fine tonight, but he couldn’t locate. Believe it or not, that is actually GOOD news. The fact his ineffectiveness has been for different reasons in each of his two starts since coming off the DL suggests that there isn’t any sort of continuing problem. At any rate, Torre seemed to suggest after the game that he is still committed to Penny as one of his starters. “We’ll see how he feels, but at this point in time, he is our guy five days from now.” That would actually be six days from now against Colorado, because the Dodgers are off on Monday. … Just for kicks, I asked Joe how tough it was to double switch ManRam out of the game in the ninth inning, given that there was no guarantee the game wouldn’t go 12, 13 or maybe 25 innings. “I tried to find a way not to do it,” he said. “But I knew we had Berroa and Ardoin on the bench. Pierre would be the fourth hitter, and Ethier would be the sixth hitter. I kicked myself for it. That was the toughest decision of the year for me right there.” The good news is that thanks to Nomar’s walkoff homer, it didn’t matter. Dodgers go to 61-59, first time to two games over .500 since they were 26-24 after losing to the Cubs on May 26, and pull even with Arizona.

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  • Mario DiLeo

    These were three great wins AT HOME…let’s hope this magic can continue on the road since that’s where most of the games will be after this homestand…

  • probotic

    Nice to see us bounce back from 2 tough losses against SF. Also, nice to see us take 3 in a row from a division leader. Finally, I’d like to say it’s nice to see people show some positive attitude towards the team…

    GO BLUE!

  • The 5th Outfielder

    Bottom of 9th inning, Dodgers trailing. ethier comes up to the plate with a chance to make a statement- he does . . . gag. Same situation, and from off the bench comes now Pierre- Juan Pierre with chance for to speak loudly . . . he does, tieing up the game for the LA Dodgers & rallying them to victory.

    Such is the difference between a money player- as in the proficiency his ‘game’ as well ‘cha ching’ – Pierre, and the other guy, a journeyman x2 as such, who wilts like a 10 cent orchid under pressure.

    Congratulations Juan . . . better luck next time to the other guy/5th outfielder.

  • KevinS

    5th Outfielder… you’re funny!! LOL!!

    HEY TONY… just an observation from last night’s game:

    Nomar’s walk-off dinger capped a great comeback from a 6-1 deficit and was the highlight of the night. But where was Manny in the celebration at the plate? I watched the replay four or five times and couldn’t spot him at all… and not like he’s hard to find in a crowd either… dreadlocks and all. Torre put Broxton in Manny’s spot in the order, so ManRam was finished for the night. Was he back in the clubhouse changing out already? Was he pissed off to be removed from the game? Where was he, what was he doing? Could you snoop around on this for us? Thanks!!

    I wasn’t happy that Manny didn’t participate in the celebration, especially that of a former teammate of his. I’d like for him to feel as part of this Dodgers team and not just a rental player… but maybe his ego is getting in the way? Let’s hope he stays focused with this club and doesn’t get selfish on us… but that’s wishful thinking I’m afraid. I sure like his contributions thus far and he’s putting fans back in the seats as well.

  • Mario DiLeo

    ManRam was definitely there for Tuesday’s finish when Ethier drove in Martin, check that video…Manny gets a pass as long he keeps slugging over .750…hell, the Red Sox put up with him for years, can we deal with him for another two months?

  • Yeager

    2 outs bottom of the 8th, runners on 2nd and 3rd, (first base open) Dodgers down 2, no way Jeff Kent gets a pitch he can pull down the line to tie it unless Manny is behind him. I’m not too worried about where Manny was after being double-switched out of the game, these celebrations are overdone anyway (It’s August, and the team is 2 games over .500) I was holding my breath that Nomar didn’t get hurt by someone wanting to “celebrate.” Maybe Manny was icing down that sore knee he had in Boston, if he can remember which one it is.

    Baseball is a funny game, 2 horrible losses to a bad SF team, then 3 big wins against a good Philadelphia team. Could be a wild ride from here on in, but I have a feeling Arizona is going to continue to fade.

  • AZShaker

    Good post 5th OF!!!

    Tonight, look for Pierre on the bench. He is thinking of building a fort under the bench using Fat Brad Penny’s jersey. Since he’ll need to be changed, you better get down there with the Pampers by the end of the 4th inning. The changing table is done I, Skepti, I mean bosvsla…I mean 5th Outfielder.

  • TeamHasHoles

    Dear 5th OF,

    Don’t make me go into all the stats that make Joe’s decision between Ethier and Pierre the easy decision that it is. The only thing Pierre does better than Ethier is steal bases and nothing else.

    The problem for Juan, and it’s the old baseball adage, YOU CAN’T STEAL FIRSTBASE! Ethier is having his worst OBP season so far and he’s still 30 points better than JP.

    Pierre, is a situational player. An expensive one, but on this team, the way the lineup shakes out, he’s a situational player whose only defensive position at this point is clearly, his worst (CF).