Some day the Dodgers will make a charge, they are certain of it. Come roaring through the standings.
Meanwhile, the days drift by and the season approaches its half-way point, and still no charge. If they’re going to do it, they need to start by beating teams within their own division.
The Dodgers committed two more errors, one of them costly, leaving them with 54 errors on the season. That’s the most in the National League and ties them with the Angels for the most in baseball.
They wasted a fine starting performance from Stephen Fife and the nightly Yasiel Puig highlight, to drop 11 games under .500 (30-41) and 8 1/2 games back of the first-place Diamondbacks in the NL West.
Fife started and pitched very well. One of those deserved-a-better-fate starts. Fife went six innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and a walk, while striking out six.
Puig gave Fife an early lead when he hit the first pitch he saw from Jason Marquis over the center-field wall in the first. It was his sixth home run in 16 games and it tied him with another call-up, Scott Van Slyke, for the second most homers on the team. To repeat, he has played 16 games.
Fife made the 1-0 lead hold up until the fifth, and probably should have gotten out of that inning unscathed. With Alexi Amarista on first after a single, career minor-league shortstop Pedro Ciriaco hit one hopper to Mark Ellis at second.
Ellis, normally outstanding defensively, saw double play all the way. But when he tried to short-hop the drive, the ball scooted under his glove and into the outfield for an error. Marquis then laced a single to left and Logan Forsythe laced another to right and San Diego had a 2-1 lead.
The Dodgers, though, came back to tie it in the sixth. After singles by Hanley Ramirez and Andre Ethier put runners on the corners, Juan Uribe lifted a fly deep enough to right to sacrifice in Ramirez.
But the bullpen let the Dodgers down again.
Paco Rodriguez quickly took over for Guerrier, and after getting a pop-up, intentionally walked Forsythe. First baseman Adrian Gonzalez made a nice scoop with his glove and flipped the ball on the run to catcher A.J. Ellis on a bunt by Will Venable to get Ciriaco at the plate, but Chase Headley singled to give San Diego a two-run lead.
Ciriaco, the journeyman infielder, was hardly done. Right-handed reliever Peter Moylan gave up a single to Grandal and then a two-run homer to Ciriaco.
A.J. Ellis hit a home run in the ninth for the Dodgers’ final run.