2022 MLB Playoffs: Dodgers’ lifeless offense, Game 3 loss put season on the line

By Pedro Moura
FOX Sports MLB Writer

SAN DIEGO — While Mookie Betts retreated to Petco Park’s visiting dugout after riding in the Dodgers’ most effective run Friday, he pumped his fist 4 occasions and many times clapped his palms.

He had produced a sacrifice fly, now not the form of success Betts typically celebrates. But he may see in addition to any individual that his teammates wanted a spice up. 

Betts’ exhortations may now not liven up the Dodgers, who submitted every other lifeless efficiency in Game 3 of this National League Division Series. In 9 at-bats with runners in scoring place, they may now not produce a unmarried hit.

The Dodgers’ season, so impressive for 6 months, is now on the verge of collapse after two depressing offensive performances in 3 days. With their 2-1 victory, the Padres earned themselves the probability to finish the Dodgers’ season Saturday in San Diego. They have appeared awesome to their 111-win competitors since halfway thru Game 1 of this collection.

Jake Cronenworth’s unmarried provides Padres early lead over Dodgers

Jake Cronenworth's single gives Padres early lead over Dodgers

The San Diego Padres jumped to an early 1-0 lead on the Los Angeles Dodgers due to an RBI unmarried by means of Jake Cronenworth.

Betts’ celebrations have been about the most effective ones carried out by means of the Dodgers and their fanatics Friday. Ten mins prior to first pitch, the Petco Park video board performed a clip from Dodgers beginning pitcher Tony Gonsolin’s Thursday Zoom consultation with journalists, during which he mentioned he may now not consider the San Diego crowd producing extra noise than the Dodgers are used to day-to-day at Dodger Stadium.

All night time, fanatics wielded the remark as gas whilst celebrating the first Padres’ postseason victory in entrance of them at Petco Park. This the city has been starved of good fortune since this jewel of a stadium opened close to the San Diego waterfront, and the Padres took additional care to stay tickets to Game 3 in the palms of locals.

Gonsolin was once now not lengthy for the recreation. He lasted most effective 4 outs, surrendering one run, prior to Dodgers supervisor Dave Roberts summoned the first of 5 relievers. As in Game 2, the Dodgers’ relievers did sufficient to stay the recreation shut, and their hitters produced numerous scoring possibilities. They simply didn’t flip the ones into runs.

Betts started the recreation with a unmarried and took 2d base when a bouncing Blake Snell pitch in brief escaped catcher Austin Nola‘s view. But no different Dodgers put the ball into play till the 2d inning, so Betts stayed there. 

Snell, boasting higher stuff than even his lofty norm, struck out 5 of the first seven Dodgers to bat. Come the 0.33 inning, he in brief misplaced his means towards the ultimate two hitters in the lineup. Trayce Thompson walked, and Austin Barnes singled, mentioning Betts once more. He laced a liner down the third-base line, just for Manny Machado to snag it. After Freddie Freeman walked to load the bases, Will Smith popped as much as finish the inning. 

Meanwhile, the Padres transformed their early scoring probability. After Juan Soto doubled and Machado walked in the first inning, Jake Cronenworth poked a unmarried into heart to attain Soto. Gonsolin was once so unsteady that left-hander Andrew Heaney started to heat in the back of him then, and Heaney changed Gonsolin after two extra Padres reached base in the 2d inning.

In that inning and the subsequent, Heaney pitched round bother to check in scoreless innings. He may now not whole the feat in the fourth, for Trent Grisham despatched his first pitch into the bleachers. Later that inning, Soto fell a couple of ft wanting doing the similar. Grisham’s homer stood as the decisive run.

Trent Grisham hits a solo house run to present the Padres a 2-0 lead

Trent Grisham hits a solo home run to give the Padres a 2-0 lead

Trent Grisham doubled the San Diego Padres’ lead on the Los Angeles Dodgers with a house run in the fourth.

In the 5th, Betts lifted his sacrifice fly, scoring Thompson, who had singled and brought 0.33 on Barnes’ double. The backside of the Dodgers’ order was once now not their downside Friday; the center of it was once. Trea Turner, Freeman and Smith may now not convert the possibilities their less-heralded teammates created.

Of path, the Dodgers will have to now not be dominated out till they’re out. They have come again from the verge of collapse prior to, together with on their approach to a World Series win in 2020. But doing so in 2022 would require an abrupt shift. 

Their stars must get started riding in runs.

Pedro Moura is the nationwide baseball author for FOX Sports. He up to now coated the Dodgers for The Athletic, the Angels and Dodgers for the Orange County Register and L.A. Times, and his alma mater, USC, for ESPN Los Angeles. He is the writer of “How to Beat a Broken Game.” Follow him on Twitter @pedromoura.

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