The Dodgers started a new streak on Monday, but this time they are moving in the wrong direction. They lost their second game in a row, a 6-2 contest against the Miami Marlins to open a four-game series.
Hyun-Jin Ryu was solid, but was out-dueled by a fellow rookie, the Marlins' hard-throwing Jose Fernandez. Ryu lasted 7.1 innings, giving up six hits and two walks for three runs with five strikeouts.
He gave up two runs in the second inning as the Marlins put together a frustrating two-out rally that started with the pitcher. Fernandez singled, Christian Yelich doubled him in, and Donovan Solano singled him in to put the Dodgers down 2-0.
Then in the sixth Ryu gave up another run after back-to-back singles to Solano and Giancarlo Stanton, followed by a Logan Morrison double. Usually Ryu gives up lots of hits over the course of the game and finds ways to get out of bad situations, but on Monday he was giving up well-hit ball in succession for runs.
For the Marlins, Fernandez was fantastic and insanely fun to watch. Well, as much fun as watching an opposing pitcher mow down the Dodgers can be. He gave up just four hits, three of them to Juan Uribe, while striking out eight.
The Dodgers best scoring threat came in the fifth inning after they loaded the bases with no outs. Carl Crawford brought in one run with on ground ball to second base, beating out the throw on a double play. Then with runners on the corners and one out Yasiel Puig and Adrian Gonzalez went down on strikes, easily.
They scored another run in the sixth after Andre Ethier was hit on the kneecap by a 58-mph floater and Juan Uribe doubled him in. Uribe was the only Dodger capable of hitting off Fernandez, and had three of their four hits off of him.
Fortunately for the Dodgers, he threw a lot of pitches and was done after six innings, giving them a three innings to come back from a one-run deficit against the 10th worst bullpen in the NL. Even then they could only muster up two hits as A.J. Ramos, Chad Qualls, and Steve Cishek combined for three scoreless innings.
The Dodger bullpen on the other hand was not so lights out. Chris Withrow came in for Ryu with one out in the eighth and struck out the first batter he faced, then gave up a monstrous solo home run to Giancarlo Stanton. J.P. Howell then shattered any hopes of a comeback by giving up a double, RBI single, wild pitch, and RBI single without getting an out, bringing the score to 6-2.
The Dodgers have lost two in a row, but they won 10 straight before that, and 10 wins in 12 is still pretty good. I'm almost hoping for a win Tuesday, as Chris Capuano faces off with Jacob Turner, just so that Dodger fans do not have a complete meltdown.