LOS ANGELES (AP)AJ Pollock, Joc Pederson and Mookie Betts homered in the eighth inning, and the Los Angeles Dodgers shrugged off Kevin Pillar’s dramatic grand slam moments earlier to claim their sixth straight victory, 10-6 over the Colorado Rockies on Friday night.
Pillar put the Rockies ahead 6-5 in the eighth and set off a wild dugout celebration with his second career grand slam. That lead lasted six pitches against the relentless Dodgers, who have won 19 of 22 overall after pounding out five homers and a season-high 15 hits.
”Honestly, I don’t think there’s going to be anywhere we don’t feel like we have a chance,” Pollock said. ”If we’re down a couple of runs, we’re going to keep plugging. We know we’re always in it. If we can get a couple of guys on, we’ve got some guys that can hit the ball out of the ballpark. … It’s fun when you get everyone rolling. Up and down the lineup, we’re looking to do some damage.”
Cody Bellinger singled off Carlos Estevez (1-1) before Pollock drove his eighth homer to right-center, and Pederson followed with his sixth homer. Betts then capped his three-hit game with his 500th career RBI on his 13th homer, a two-run shot off Jeff Hoffman.
”I’d be hard-pressed to find a team that’s equipped to do what we do,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said when asked if he had ever been a part of a team with these Dodgers’ overall capabilities. ”There was a lot of energy on the other side, which I get, I love. But for us to respond the way we did, certainly not a surprise, but always good to see.”
Will Smith hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the seventh for the major league-leading Dodgers (30-10), who have matched the best 40-game start in franchise history. Max Muncy also homered, and Corey Seager drove in two runs in Los Angeles’ 11th consecutive win at Dodger Stadium.
Raimel Tapia and Sam Hilliard homered for the Rockies in the opener of a key six-game Southern California road trip.
”They’ve got a good team, (but) I know we don’t scare off against them,” Colorado manager Bud Black said. ”Tonight, kind of like a few games this year, we haven’t made pitches. We got the big hit tonight, but previous games, we didn’t get a big hit. We’re not going to back down against the Dodgers.”
The Rockies loaded the bases with one hit in the eighth against the NL’s best bullpen. Caleb Ferguson (2-0) gave up the grand slam to Pillar, the San Fernando Valley native who joined Colorado on Monday from Boston and promptly endeared himself to teammates and fans hoping the Rockies can snag a playoff spot.
Estevez hadn’t allowed a run on the road all season, but not many pitchers have been able to survive the Dodgers’ merciless lineup unscathed. The Dodgers’ plus-102 run differential is the third-best in the last 80 years over the first 40 games of a season.
”Late in the game, they’re never out of it,” Hilliard said. ”We play a lot of crazy games here. Once we get that lead, we need to keep tacking on more runs.”
Rookie Dustin May pitched three-hit ball into the sixth inning with five strikeouts, improving his case to be the Dodgers’ No. 3 starter in the postseason. The 22-year-old allowed two homers for the first time in his career, but they were his only baserunners who got past first.
Antonio Senzatela yielded seven hits and two runs over 5 1/3 innings of another solid start for Colorado.
Hilliard put Colorado ahead with his sixth homer in the fifth inning. Success in Chavez Ravine is no surprise for Hilliard, who has five homers in just nine career appearances here.
The game was delayed about five minutes in the bottom of the second when a Dodger Stadium security guard spotted a drone hovering high above the playing field. The umpires took both teams off the field until it flew away.
At least four ballgames across the continent have been delayed by rogue drone flights this season, happening previously in Boston, Minneapolis and New York. Once play resumed, the Dodger Stadium organist played the theme from ”The X-Files.”
Rockies: RHP Jon Gray went on the 10-day injured list with right shoulder inflammation. He has struggled to a 6.69 ERA in eight starts. RHP Jose Mujica came up to fill Gray’s roster spot.
Tony Gonsolin (0-0, 0.51 ERA) makes his first start since the Dodgers officially put him in their rotation by trading Ross Stripling to Toronto. Colorado starter German Marquez (2-5, 4.88 ERA) is in a career-worst losing streak of four games.
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