The Dodgers lost, 4-1, to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday, and maybe your first reaction is, so what?
They have this thing all but locked up, still lead the National League West by 12 games with only 17 to play, are still in total control.
And that would all be correct, but losing still does matter, though you couldn’t be certain of that by Manager Don Mattingly resting four regulars.
But they missed an opportunity to pull within one game of the Atlanta Braves for the best record in the National League, and those opportunities could be fleeting.
And for at least one night, they appeared to lose an edge they need to hone going into the playoffs.
Hyun-Jin Ryu made his first start in 12 days after missing a turn with a stiff back, and the extended rest did not appear to help his sharpness.
Ryu (13-4) threw six rocky innings, giving up three runs and 10 hits. He did not walk a batter and struck out one.
The Diamondbacks jumped on Ryu for a pair of runs in the first inning. A.J. Pollack, Willie Bloomquist and Paul Goldschmidt opened with consecutive singles for one run, and Martin Prado bounced into a double play that scored a second run.
Arizona made it a 3-0 lead in the second on doubles by Gerardo Parra and Tuffy Gosewisch. In the seventh, Brandon League loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. Brian Wilson relieved League and gave up an RBI bloop hit to Goldschmidt, but got Prado to bounce into an inning-ending double play.
The Dodgers avoided the shutout in the bottom of the seventh when Yasiel Puig took left-hander Patrick Corbin deep for his 16th home run. That ended the night for Corbin (14-6), who gave up the one run and eight hits in 6 1/3 innings.
Puig now has the most home runs for a Dodgers rookie since Raul Mondesi hit 16 in 1994. Puig, however, has played in only 87 games; Mondesi appeared in 112 games in his rookie-of-the-year season.
The Dodgers’ magic number remained at six, meaning the earliest they can now clinch is Sunday against the San Francisco Giants.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun