Van Slyke's HR sends Dodgers past Marlins
LOS ANGELES -- Scott Van Slyke blasted a three-run, walk-off home run in the ninth inning off Steve Cishek on Monday and rallied the Dodgers to a 5-3 win over the Marlins at Dodger Stadium.
Right-hander Zack Greinke gave up one run in seven innings, and the Dodgers won their fourth straight. Cishek, meanwhile, tried to protect a one-run lead in the ninth for Miami, only to sustain two straight blown saves. In the ninth, the closer got a quick out, but walked Yasmani Grandal. Andre Ethier singled, and Van Slyke went deep to center, giving Cishek his fourth blown save in seven tries.
"I was looking hard, up," Van Slyke said of the 1-0 slider from Cishek. "Luckily, he threw me a ball with the slider for the first pitch, and I got a pretty good look at it, and then he threw the next one over the plate."
Miami took the lead in the ninth with its own comeback. Christian Yelich, whose seventh-inning error set up an unearned run that put the Dodgers ahead, delivered a two-run homer off Yimi Garcia. It was an opposite-field shot. Marcell Ozuna, who homered in the seventh inning off Greinke, walked with one out.
"Any time you have leads late and you can't hold on to them, it crushes you," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "That's back-to-back games we had opportunities to win, and we couldn't lock them down. It's tough. You've got to win those games. You've got to win the games you're supposed to win."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Van Slyke's masterpiece, just like Dad: Van Slyke, son of five-time Gold Glove outfielder Andy Van Slyke, threw out Yelich at the plate for a double play to end the seventh inning. Van Slyke charged Adeiny Hechavarria's sinking liner to left, gloved it and then threw a strike to catcher Yasmani Grandal to just nip Yelich, who had tagged from third base.
"When I let it go, I knew it would be on line," Van Slyke said of his throw, "but I didn't know how well I threw it, because I had to throw it on the run." More >
Hech of a play: Hechavarria, a Gold Glove finalist last year, made a Gold Glove-worthy play to rob Joc Pederson of a hit in the third inning. The Marlins shortstop, shifted up the middle for the left-handed hitter, ranged quickly to his backhand side and made the stop and an across-his-body throw to nab Pederson at first. According to Statcast™, Hechavarria's throw was clocked at 68.187 mph, and the exit velocity of Pederson's grounder was 103 mph. Hechavarria's play was similar to Atlanta's Andrelton Simmons robbing Travis d'Arnaud of the Mets on April 19. Simmons' cross-body throw was 68.5 mph.
Stanton saves a run: The Marlins' defense came up big all night. In the fifth inning, Giancarlo Stanton made a running, reaching catch on Jimmy Rollins' drive to right. The Dodgers had Van Slyke on third and Pederson on first. Pederson was going full speed around second when Stanton made the catch on the warning track, spun and threw to first. Michael Morse completed the double play. The second out was made before Van Slyke, who tagged, crossed the plate.
"There is nothing he does out there that really surprises me anymore," Marlins starter Tom Koehler said of Stanton. "When everybody thinks of him, they think of the offensive threat that he is. But he has the ability to change the game with his legs, and with his defense, and you saw, his arm also."
"I'm going to continue to work. That's all I can do. It's not a lack of work ethic or preparation. It's just a lack of effectiveness out there right now." -- Cishek, who is not guaranteed to close any more. More >
"I don't really like the thought of Dee Gordon on base, so we'll try to keep him off base." -- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly on the Marlins second baseman, who stole a Major League-leading 64 bases for the Dodgers last season.
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Gordon went 0-for-4 with a walk and had his 13-game hitting streak snapped. The streak matched the longest of Gordon's career.
Marlins: Gordon isn't the only ex-Dodger making a return to Dodger Stadium. On Tuesday, Dan Haren gets the starting nod in the middle of three in Los Angeles. Haren has been Miami's most consistent starter, posting a 4-1 record with a 2.68 ERA. Haren and Gordon were traded to Miami at the December Winter Meetings.
Dodgers: The Dodgers plan to start right-hander Mike Bolsinger in Tuesday's second game of their three-game series with the Marlins at Dodger Stadium. He was already in the Dodgers clubhouse before Monday's game and is expected to be officially recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City before the 7:10 p.m. PT first pitch.
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