Offense comes at a premium when facing a pitcher of the quality of the Philadelphia Phillies Cliff Lee. The Los Angeles Dodgers were unable to come up with any in a 7-0 loss Monday.
Lee was dominant in his eight innings of work allowing only four hits while striking out 10 and walking none. There was only one inning in the entire game that the Dodgers had multiple runners on and even then it really didn’t work out that way.
Yasiel Puig singled to lead off the bottom of the first on a shot that nearly took Ryan Howard’s hand off down the right-field line. Two outs later Adrian Gonzalez singled on a ground ball up the middle that Chase Utley stopped. Puig received no direction from third-base coach Lorenzo Bundy on the play and continued to wander around third base and eventually was tagged out in a rundown.
“It looked like to me that (Puig) just kept going right there, said manager Don Mattingly. The play is behind him but you have to make sure that ball goes through.” With regards to Bundy communicating on the play Mattingly said, “(Puig) didn’t look up so it wouldn’t have mattered. You gotta look up.”
Dodgers starter Paul Maholm lasted only five innings making it the eighth time in 20 games that a Dodger starter lasted five innings or less. The Phillies were on base early and often with eight hits and three walks with Maholm on the hill. The pitch count for the lefty was not helped by a 29-pitch first inning with only 13 for strikes.
After Tony Gwynn Jr. walked to start the game, Jimmy Rollins popped up to shallow right-center and would end up with a single on the play when the ball fell between a trio of Dodgers. Two batters later Carlos Ruiz doubled in both Gwynn and Rollins to put the Phillies on top 2-0.
Maholm scattered three hits over the next three innings to get the Dodgers into the fifth inning only down by two but the wheels fell off with two outs. Howard connected on the first pitch he saw sending the ball into the right-center field bleachers to increase the Phillies lead to 4-0.
The next two batters would reach on singles setting up a Freddy Galvis tapper back to the mound that Maholm threw over Gonzalez at first and down the line allowing another run to score.
“We didn’t help him, said Mattingly. “I thought he hung in there for us. Gave us a chance. We just really didn’t do enough for him. The way Cliff was going, four runs felt like 10.”
Fresh off being recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque, Jose Dominguez allowed a two-run shot to Ruiz in the ninth.
WP: Cliff Lee (3-2)
LP: Paul Maholm (0-2)
-Mattingly reiterated after the game that Brandon League is pitching well. “He’s giving us some good innings. Giving us chances. He’s doing his job.” League hasn’t surrendered a run in five of his seven appearances making up eight of his 10 innings of work this season.
-Ramirez is now 1-for 15 since coming out of Wednesday’s game but refuses to blame it on the injury. “If I was hurting I wouldn’t tell you guys but I feel one hundred percent,” said Ramirez. “I don’t think he is hurting,” said Mattingly. “Talking to him, I’m asking him during the game and he say he’s seeing the ball good. He’s not complaining of anything. He’s not really getting any treatment on it.”