Adam Greenberg — the man whose sole big league plate appearance resulted in a beaning — is going to un-Moonlight Graham himself in tonight’s Marlins-Mets game. He won’t start, but Ozzie Guillen said he will pinch hit him at some point in the game, likely when the outcome is not on the line. Guillen says that, despite both teams being out of it, he is going to manage to win.
R.A. Dickey — the pitcher Greenberg is most likely to face — is playing to win too. Here’s what he says:
“He’s a big leaguer. I’m going to treat him like a big leaguer,” Dickey said. “That’s why he’s here. I would hope he wouldn’t want anything less than that. That’s certainly how I’m going to treat him. So if he comes up, he’s going to get a steady dose of my best. Whatever that is.”
I love the “whatever that is” line. With Dickey that could be anything from his weird knuckler to his “fastball” to that changeup he whips out every once in a while. Heck, it could be his powerful, paralyzing, poifect, pachydoimous, percussion pitch.
The Dodgers are NL West champions for the fifth time in a row. They clinched with a 4-2 win over the Giants on Friday night, taking their first and only lead on a mammoth record-breaking home run from Cody Bellinger in the third inning.
Rich Hill turned in another quality start, going six innings with five hits, a run and nine strikeouts to keep the Giants at bay. He tacked on an RBI hit of his own, too, lashing a double to left field for his first extra-base hit since 2007.
The Giants, meanwhile, deployed Jeff Samardzija and his 4.42 ERA for 4 1/3 innings. Samardzija was on the hook for the Dodgers’ four-run spread in the third and took his 15th loss of the season. Pablo Sandoval came through with a solo home run in the ninth, but the rest of San Francisco’s offense wasn’t so lucky against Kenley Jansen, who struck out the side to clinch the game — and the division.
After Friday’s showstopper, the Dodgers are just two wins away from their first 100-win season since 1974. If they win the remaining eight games of the season, they’ll beat out the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers for the most wins in franchise history.
Cody Bellinger helped the Dodgers to their first lead on Friday night, going deep for his 39th home run of the season and setting a new National League rookie home run record in the process. With two on and two out in the third inning, the Dodgers’ slugger launched a 2-1 pitch from the Giants’ Jeff Samardzija, skimming the right field fence to give the team a three-run cushion:
The three-run bomb was Bellinger’s sixth of the season. In what is undoubtedly a Rookie of the Year award-worthy campaign, he’s logged 21 solo shots, 11 two-run blasts and a single grand slam. His historic home run topped former NL rookie leaders Frank Robinson and Wally Berger, at 38 homers apiece.
The Dodgers need to stay on top of the Giants to clinch the NL West or, barring that, have the Marlins pull off a win over the Diamondbacks. They currently lead the Giants 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Marlins, meanwhile, are staying just ahead of the D-backs with a 9-7 lead in the top of the sixth.