Dodgers Waste Opportunity to Gain Ground on Giants in 4-3 16-Inning Loss to Cardinals

Justin Turner hit the go-ahead home run in the top of the ninth, but it was not enough as Kenley Jansen blew his fifth save and the Cardinals came back to win in the 16th inning on Friday night at Busch Stadium.

The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.

Justin Turner hit the go-ahead homer in the top of the ninth, Jedd Gyorko tied the game in the bottom of the ninth and Matt Adams crushed a game-winning walk-off home run in the 16th inning as the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers in the second longest game of the season on Friday night.

Dodgers' rookie Corey Seager made a triumphant return to the LA lineup, going 4-for-7 as he did not waste any time making his impact felt on the field. 

Chase Utley started the game with a leadoff double off Michael Wacha and Seager followed with an RBI single to give the Dodgers an early 1-0 lead. 

After an 11-pitch walk to Gyorko to start the third inning, Brandon McCarthy walked Tommy Pham and allowed an RBI single to Aledmys Diaz that Joc Pederson bobbled in centerfield as the error cost the Dodgers two runs.

After the Diaz single, McCarthy retired the next 11 consecutive Cardinal batters he faced, but the lanky right-hander cramped up in the seventh inning and had to exit the game. 

In just his fourth start since returning from Tommy John surgery, McCarthy allowed two runs (one earned) on just one hit with four strikeouts in 6 and 1/3 innings of work. He recorded a no-decision in the process and remains undefeated as a Dodger.

Wacha also got a no-decision, allowing two runs on 10 hits with four strikeouts in six innings pitched. 

Howie Kendrick tied the game with a solo home run down the right field line that extended his hitting-streak to 14 games.

Turner launched his third home run in two days and fifth in seven games as the Dodgers broke a 2-2 tie with the Redbirds in the ninth.

After missing on two straight sliders, Turner got a 93MPH fastball from Seung Hwan Oh and sent it into the open grass behind the centerfield wall.

The Dodgers entered the bottom of the ninth with all the momentum and confidence as their All-Star closer Kenley Jansen was on the mound. Jansen got the first two outs of the inning but blew his second save in his last five games and fifth of the season when he served up a solo shot to Gyorko to tie the game at 3-3. It was Gyorko's sixth home run in his last six games. 

Grant Dayton made his MLB debut and pitched two scoreless innings of relief. In his first big league appearance, Dayton pitched to slugger Matt Adams and seven-time All-Stars Matt Holliday and Yadier Molina.

Sunday's supposed starter Tyler Lyons came out of the pen for the Cards and threw 4 and 2/3 scoreless innings of relief before Matt Adams won the game for the Redbirds with a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 16th

Bud Norris came out of the bullpen pitching on just two days after he took the loss on Wednesday in Washington D.C. After he escaped a leadoff double in the 15th inning, Norris surrendered the game-winning home run on a fastball over the plate to Adams.

The Dodgers will certainly be frustrated after this heartbreaking loss. It's their second blown save in the past week, and arguably the third game they should have won over that span after leading in the late innings.

To make matters worse, the San Francisco Giants lost to the Yankees and LA misses an ample opportunity to move within three games of first place in the NL West. The Dodgers outhit the Redbirds 14-to-8, going 1-for-13 with runners in scoring position and left an astronomical 13 men on base.  

Players of the Game:
Matt Adams:
Game-winning, walk-off home run in the 16th inning.
Justin Turner: Home run in the ninth inning.
Jedd Gyorko: Game-tying home run in the bottom of the ninth.

Three Takeaways:

1. Libearatore Means Relief: Adam Liberatore pitched a scoreless inning of relief in the seventh inning to extend his Dodger franchise record to 28 consecutive scoreless appearances. To put that into perspective, 28 scoreless appearances was the most by New York Yankees closer and future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera.

2. Dayton Flyer: Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Grant Dayton made his Major League debut on Friday night when he entered the game in the bottom of the 11th inning to face home run hitter Matt Adams and a pair of seven-time All-Stars in Matt Holliday and Yadier Molina.

3. What's Wrong Kenley: Dodgers' closer Kenley Jansen blew his second save in a week and his fifth of the season. Jansen's trademark "cutter" has not been "cutting" as of late and the Dodgers have lost two games because of it. Even worse, it's cost the team two games in the NL West standings.

Up Next:

Dodgers (54-44): Kenta Maeda heads to the mound on Saturday in St Louis.

Cardinals (52-44): Mike Leake makes the start for the Redbirds at 4:15PM.

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