Last night's game turned into a laugher, with LA scoring nine runs in the fifth on their way to a 10-2 win. It was DLowe's best performance in a long while. He said before the game that he'd noticed a flaw in his delivery, and it seems he had. The only negative was in the seventh when Antonio Perez replaced Jeff Kent at second to rest Kent's sore leg. Perez, as is his wont, immediately booted a ball. Then Lowe, as is his wont, lost his concentration muttering to himself about Perez's defense, and coughed up a home run to the next batter, his eighteenth gopher ball of the year, a new personal record. Still, he did manage to compose himself and get out of the inning to avoid further damage, so that was good. Elmer Dessens, in a rare appearance, finished up with no further incident.
Today was getaway day, so I got to listen at my desk while coding. The Dodgers scored one in the top of the first on doubles by Oscar Robles and Kent, and that's how it stayed. Odalis Perez was superb, pitching seven scoreless innings, and only giving up three hits, by far his best game since coming back from the DL. Yhency found some redemption, setting down the meat of the Phils' order 1-2-3 in the bottom of the ninth, while Dodger fans across the country rejoiced at their desks, albeit quietly.
So, things are starting to look up a little. The pitching seems to be improving. Steve Schmoll came back from the minors much improved, which has helped the middle relief. After his slow start, Oscar Robles has begun to hit the heck out of the ball. He's patient at the plate, something a lot of the guys on this team seem have forgotten, making him a much better lead off guy than Izturis. He doesn't have a lot of power (although he homered to lead off the game Tuesday), but he does hit doubles. The Dodgers are still way short of power, but Milton Bradley and Jose Valentin are both rehabbing in the minors, so there mught be some help for that on the way. It'll be nice to have a little pop in the line up for a change.
The Dodgers now head to Shea on a high note for the weekend series with the Mets. Meanwhile, the Amazin's were clobbering the Padres, sweeping their series. Weaver goes up against Zambrano tomorrow, and it looks like it'll be DJ Houlton versus Pedro Martinez Saturday. That last doesn't bode well for the boys in blue.
The happiest guy in the majors right now has got to be Aaron Small. Small is a guy who has spent the better part of his long professional career bouncing around the minor leagues (with some nineteen different organizations) who, thanks to the Yankees' dire pitching straits (eleven different starters in the last twenty games), was sent out to start last night against Texas. It was his first major league start since 1996. This is called throwing a guy to the wolves. He pitched well, giving up three runs in five and a third innings, and getting his first ML win in seven years. He is now the newest Yankee folk hero.