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Dodgers suffer their 10th consecutive loss

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This is not how Dodgers manager Dave Roberts envisioned September going for his team. The club beat the Padres 1-0 on September 1, improving to 92-41. Since then, the Dodgers have failed to win a game, suffering 10 consecutive defeats: three to the Padres, three to the Diamondbacks, and four to the Rockies. In a slightly larger picture, the Dodgers have lost 15 of their last 16 ballgames.

The Dodgers suffered an 8-1 loss to the Rockies on Sunday afternoon. The Rockies scored twice against Rich Hill over his five innings of work and Mark Reynolds put the cherry on top of the sundae with an eighth-inning grand slam off of Walker Buehler. Tony Wolters tacked on an RBI single for good measure and Trevor Story drilled a solo homer in the ninth. Tyler Chatwood started and tossed five shutout innings. Carlos Estevez, Mike Dunn, Scott Oberg, and Adam Ottavino stymied the Dodgers over the final four frames. Alex Verdugo hit his first major league home run, a solo shot, in the bottom of the ninth, but it was too little, too late.

Entering Sunday’s action, Dodger pitching combined to put up a 6.24 ERA in the nine previous games between September 2-9. That includes 14 home runs allowed in 79 1/3 innings. The offense had combined to hit a thoroughly unimpressive .197/.255/.340 in 319 plate appearances since September 2.

The 88-55 Nationals, who clinched the NL East on Sunday, have made up some ground to the 92-51 Dodgers in the race for home field advantage.

Phillies option Hector Neris to Triple-A

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The Phillies announced that they’ve optioned right-hander Hector Neris to Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Nerris, who saved 26 games as the Phillies closer in 2017 and ten games in that role this year, has struggled this year, posting a 6.00 ERA in 30 appearances. While his strikeout and walk rates aren’t too far off what he was doing last year his hit rate has spiked and he’s currently allowing 10.3 safeties per nine. The wheels have come off of late, as he has allowed nine runs on 15 hits — five of them homers — over his last eight innings of work. Yesterday he allowed four runs in the ninth inning of a game the Phillies had led by five.

It was clear that Gabe Kapler had lost faith in Neris as a result, using him almost exclusively in low-leverage situations. That changed on Saturday, as Kapler used him in a save situation and said after the game that they were easing him back into his role. That plan obviously changed after yesterday’s meltdown.

Seranthony Dominguez had been getting the call in save situations. He’ll get them more now.