Oh no Yu didn't!
Yu Darvish struck out ten batters for the second straight start and the Los Angeles Dodgers took the rubber match from the Arizona Diamondbacks, 8-6, in a potential preview of the NLDS on Thursday night at Chase Field.
Darvish (2-0) wasn't as dominant as he was in his first start in New York, as he appeared to struggle with his command throughout the game. However, he was still effective against the NL Wild Card-leading Diamondbacks.
"I struggled to throw first pitch strikes," Darvish said through a translator after the game. "It was a battle throughout the game and I was at least able to go five innings."
The Japanese right-hander allowed just two runs on five hits with two walks and ten strikeouts in five innings of work. Darvish joined Karl Spooner as the second Dodgers pitcher since 1900 to have at least 10 strikeouts in each of his first two starts with the team.
For the second straight start, the Dodgers handed Darvish an early lead as Enrique Hernandez hit a bases loaded double in the first inning that scored three runs.
"The guys are hitting really well and gave me a lot of run support," said Darvish of his new teammates. "Even with a guy like me standing in the box, we were still able to score some runs."
Two recent trade acquisitions went toe-to-toe in the fourth inning as former Tigers outfielder J.D. Martinez took Darvish deep for his 23rd home run of the season and sixth in a D-backs uniform.
Thankfully, the Dodgers broke the game open in the top half of the fifth as Chris Taylor led off the inning with a home run to left field, his 16th long ball of the season.
Taylor is batting .429 with two homers, three doubles, and six runs scored in eight games against the Diamondbacks this season.
After a walk to Corey Seager, Rookie of the Year frontrunner, Cody Bellinger hit a dribbler in front of the plate that catcher Chris Iannetta promptly threw into right field trying to make the play at first.
The error proved costly for Arizona as Seager scored on the play and Bellinger advanced to second.
Three batters later, Austin Barnes hit an infield single that scored Bellinger and the Dodgers led 6-2 through five innings.
Justin Turner missed a home run by about a foot in the top of the sixth inning as he skyrocketed a splitter from Jorge De La Rosa off the centerfield wall that scored Taylor and Kyle Farmer to extend the L.A. lead to 8-2.
Iannetta redeemed his early error with a two-run home run in the bottom half of the sixth that cut the L.A. lead in half.
The game got tighter thanks to a two-run single in the bottom of the eighth inning by Ketel Marte, but newly acquired left-hander Tony Cingrani came out of the bullpen to strike out the final two batters of the inning.
Kenley Jansen pitched a perfect ninth to shut the door on the Diamondbacks and earned his 30th save of the season.
The Dodgers won the rubber match of the three-game series and improved to 8-5 against their division rivals this season.
We Salute You, Senator
Senator John McCain was in attendance for the game on Thursday and posed for pictures with fans in attendance.
The longtime Arizona congressman was diagnosed with brain cancer last month at the age of 80.
The Dodgers concluded their 9-game road trip and will return home to the friendly confines of Chavez Ravine on Friday when they host the San Diego Padres. It will be a matchup of left-handers as Clayton Richard squares off with Rich Hill. First pitch is 6:10 PM PST.