Just a day after tying the San Francisco Giants for first place in the NL West, the Los Angeles Dodgers gained sole possession of the division lead with a 1-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians. The Giants were idle, and the Dodgers now have a half-game lead in the West.
Dan Haren bounced back after a series of difficult starts, giving up only one hit over seven shutout innings. Haren posted five strikeouts and only walked one while earning the victory. The tandem of Brian Wilson and Kenley Jansen finished the game, with each reliever delivering a perfect inning.
Aside from Haren and the bullpen, the Dodgers got some help from an unlikely duo in Miguel Rojas and Clint Robinson. Rojas made an outstanding diving stop on a ball seemingly bound for the outfield, and while the call on the field was overturned and Michael Bourn was awarded an infield single, Rojas prevented the Indians from scoring on the play.
It was Robinson who drove in the only run of the game, doing so on his first career hit in the big leagues. After Andre Ethier led off with a triple, the Dodgers seemed destined to squander their scoring opportunity after Juan Uribe and A.J. Ellis both failed to bring Ethier home. Hanley Ramirez was intentionally walked as he pinch-hit for the light-hitting Rojas, bringing Robinson to the plate in Haren’s place in the order. Robinson then proceeded to hit a soft single up the middle to bring home Ethier, and that was all the Dodgers would need.
After beginning the month of June far behind the Giants in the standings, the Dodgers closed out their final game of the month in first place. As the Dodgers are already well aware, there is still a lot of baseball left to play and plenty of time for the standings to change.
The good news is that the Dodgers are now heading in the right direction, and with their pitching staff delivering quality start after quality start, there should be no doubt that the Dodgers will be in the thick of the postseason race as the regular season draws to a close.Tags: A.J. Ellis, Andre Ethier, Baseball, Brian Wilson, CLint Robinson, Dan Haren, Hanley Ramirez, Juan Uribe, Kenley Jansen, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miguel Rojas, MLB