(East Los Angeles, CA) May 23, 2022 [From The Editor’s Desk]: In one of their most festive games on record, the Dodgers gave their passionate and most-appreciative Mexicano, Mexican-American, and Chicano fans a very good time at the Stadium when they defeated the Diamondbacks in the first game of the historic Mexican Heritage Day/Night “Split” twin bill.
Manager Dave Roberts put the ball in the hands of his young starter, Ryan Pepiot, a right-hander, with an (0-0) record and a (0.00) ERA. He also inserted Max Muncy as his Designated Hitter (DH). The Dodgers were on a 2-game winning streak, having defeated the Philadelphia Phillies (5-4) in the closer of the their four game series. They followed that with an opening game victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks, on 5/16 with another (5-4) victory.
The Diamondbacks sent Tyler Gilbert, a left-hander, who was in possession of an (0-1) start, with a (2.08) ERA, to the mound.
(Pre-Game Festivities): The Dodgers Mariachi Band and Julian Torres performed for the arriving crowd along with singers who sang the Mexican and our American national anthems. The traditional “First-pitches” were made by the designated VIPs and a youth group from the Dodgers Blue Crew was acknowledged on Dodger Vision as well. Not to forget, those fans who purchased the Special Game Ticket package were issued their Mexican-themed and very colorful Los Angeles jersey.
(Photo Gallery Credit): Javier Perez, East L.A. Sports Scene Productions, LLC / Intern, Cal State University Dominguez Hills (CSUDH)
(Brief Game Summary): The D-Backs drew two walks on Pepiot but he slowly settled in and did not allow any runs or hits in his 1st inning of work. He threw a total of (27) pitches.
In the D-Backs third, a powerful (3) run homer sailed out the Stadium. It was hit by Christian Walker giving the visitors a very nice lead. But it was just the third inning and there was still a lot more game to go. Score: D-Backs 3, Dodgers 0
In the Dodgers 4th, starting catcher, Will Smith blasted a solo Home run to left center field bringing tons of joy and smiles to all fans, but especially to the Pavilion Fans, who well represented the theme of the game, Mexican Heritage Day with their allocated jerseys as they came into the Stadium. The score was now (3-1), AZ.
Moving to the 6th inning, the Big Blue Wrecking Crew went to work with Mr. Mookie Betts belting a 2-run homer to tie the game at (3-3). And that was followed by a solo homer to left field by Trea Turner for the lead at (4-3). Also hitting adding a home run in the frame was Justin Turner. Max Muncy was on base and scored on the home run, accounting for the 5 runs.
Not to be considered down and out of a win, the D-backs pulled it together with their power shots in the 7th frame as they added a 2-run homer by Pavin Smith. In the Dodgers half of the inning, Betts struck a 1-out double to left. Then Freddie Freeman followed that with an RBI single bringing in Betts from 3B. This moved the score up to (7-5), for the Big Blue Wrecking Crew.
The 8th inning came and went quietly for both teams in a no runs, no hits effort.
And then it was closing the door time and Manager, Dave Roberts did what he does best, and he called on his #1 closer, Craig Kimbrel. And that he impressively did. He got the first two outs routinely and then Ketel Marte with a (3-2) count lashed a hard grounder up the middle scoring Alek Thomas who was on board with a walk. The score was now (7-6), Dodgers. The next batter, Jordan Luplow drew a (1-2) count and the emotion was felt rising all over Dodger Stadium in anticipation of watching the game ending out. But, after another ball was thrown on a close outside pitch, Luplow drew a full count. And then as Vince Scully’s favorite verbal description if this play, “the wind up, and here comes the pitch….swung on and missed…Dodgers win!!!!”
(FINAL SCORE): Dodgers 7 Diamondbacks 6
(Of Significance): Crowd activity perked up when Manager, Dave Roberts came out of dugout to approach and question the 3B umpire, Larry Vanover’s decision on a checked swing by Geraldo Perdomo. This led to more dissatisfaction with the umpiring as Home Plate Ump, David Rackley was booed for not being fan accurate with his corner-of-the-plate calls. Do keep in mind that at the end of the D-Backs final at-bats, and the Dodgers winning ritual of handshaking by the players, there were more claps and loud applauses for fan appreciation and celebration in Game 1 of “Mexican Heritage Day” doubleheader!!
[Night Game of 5/17 “Split” Doubleheader]
The second game of the Heritage doubleheader was yet another fan’s delight as southpaw, Tyler Anderson, remained undefeated in notching his 4th win, against no defeats, at the time of this story. And, to give their fans even more enjoyment, they were treated to the Dodger bats which were highly explosive as they rang up an easy (12-3) victory. Give credit to the bullpen for preserving the win.
[Afternoon “Getaway” Game #4 – 5/18]
Game To close out the four-game series with the D-Backs, they were swept the next day, 5/18, by the score of (5-3). Ace, Walker Buehler was the winning pitcher and boosted his record to (5-1) at the time of this story. Dodger bats remained “red-hot” and in a big 4th inning erupted for 4 runs to seal the victory. Again, the Dodgers bullpen earned another save.