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Ravin's first save shows Dodgers' relief depth

MLB.com @kengurnick

LOS ANGELES -- It didn't take 18 minutes to sort out, but there was a second unusual rule that came into play in the Dodgers' 6-2 win over the Twins Tuesday night.

Josh Ravin, recalled on Monday from Triple-A Oklahoma City, pitched the final three innings for the Dodgers and was credited with his first Major League save, which came as a total surprise to him.

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LOS ANGELES -- It didn't take 18 minutes to sort out, but there was a second unusual rule that came into play in the Dodgers' 6-2 win over the Twins Tuesday night.

Josh Ravin, recalled on Monday from Triple-A Oklahoma City, pitched the final three innings for the Dodgers and was credited with his first Major League save, which came as a total surprise to him.

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"I had no clue, not until [pitching coach Rick] Honeycutt told me," said Ravin. "I thought a three-run lead and you get save, I didn't know it was four runs. I had no idea."

He still doesn't know that the rule states a save is awarded if a reliever finishes the last three innings of a win, regardless of the size of the lead.

"I'm happy and shocked, a little of both," he said, having pocketed the game ball.

The save for Ravin, which followed Luis Avilan striking out the side in the sixth inning, was another demonstration of the depth of the Dodgers' bullpen, one night after Edward Paredes was credited for a victory in his Major League debut. It was the fifth Dodgers save of three or more innings this year (Hyun-Jin Ryu, Kenta Maeda, Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart the others).

"I was pitching really good before I went to the DL I was a little inconsistent when I came back," said Avilan. "But people tend to forget that being a reliever, like a position player, you can be in a slump and you can be in a good streak. That's what it is."

Tuesday night winning starter Maeda lasted only five innings because a 35-pitch third ran up his pitch count. Although the Dodgers have eight relievers, the bullpen was thinned out of long relievers because Ross Stripling was unavailable after pitching three innings on Sunday and Brock Stewart is being pressed into spot-starter duty Wednesday.

"When he gets up here with us, the focus heightens and the stuff is good," said Roberts. "This is as good as I've seen his slider, where he throws it for strikes and the late depth it has. For him to give us that three-inning save was really huge, especially where our 'pen's at."

Ravin estimates that he actually threw four-plus innings, as he began warming up in the sixth, which was interrupted by an 18-minute delay to sort out a Minnesota double switch.

"That was brutal," said Ravin. "I had already gotten hot. So I sat down, like I had just pitched an inning."

Ravin, who was lights-out down the stretch last season but was ineligible for the postseason because of an earlier suspension, agreed with Roberts that the bright lights and big crowds of the Major Leagues gets him amped.

"Once you pitch up here and you experience it, it's just different," he said. "Everything's bigger, louder. Going to the Minors with 3,000 compared to 40,000, there's something inside, that motivation, you just lose it and you have to keep it together."

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Luis Avilan, Josh Ravin