Dodgers overcome Gallen’s 13 Ks, rally to beat Diamondbacks 3-2

Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports
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LOS ANGELES – So much for Mookie Betts having the night off. The Los Angeles Dodgers needed his bat in the ninth inning and their All-Star came up big off the bench.

Max Muncy hit a tying infield single and Betts singled home the winning run with two outs, helping the Dodgers edge the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-2 on Thursday for their major league-leading 45th comeback victory.

“I think that may be one of my first pinch hits, so that part was pretty cool,” Betts said. “I was hoping not to hit, but you get to a point where the situation calls and you turn your brain on and you’re ready to go.”

The Dodgers didn’t take the lead until Arizona starter Zac Gallen left after eight innings. He struck out a career-high 13.

Gallen retired the first 11 batters he faced, striking out five in a row. He struck out the side in the eighth. The right-hander allowed one run and two hits in a career-best eight innings.

“He was just in complete control, domination,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “He’s fun to watch. I’m glad we don’t see him again this year.”

Craig Kimbrel (6-6) got the win despite again struggling in the ninth.

“The stuff is startling to slide a little bit, the fastball velocity,” Roberts said. “I’ve just got to continue to look at this. We’ve got to have our best guys at the back end.”

Christian Walker slammed a 435-foot shot into the left-center field pavilion – his 36th homer overall and sixth against the Dodgers this season – for a 2-1 lead against Kimbrel.

Cody Bellinger doubled off the right-field wall leading off the bottom of the ninth against Reyes Moronta (1-1).

“He was ahead of Bellinger 0-2 and then it ended up being a 3-2 pitch kind of down in the bottom of the zone, right in his honey hole,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “We just couldn’t make some pitches in a key situation to Bellinger. It’s tough to navigate through that, especially the guys who were coming up behind him.”

After Trea Turner grounded out to third, Freddie Freeman was intentionally walked. Will Smith loaded the bases on an infield single that diving shortstop Geraldo Perdomo kept from reaching the outfield.

“Belli did a great job getting on second base leading off, then we got a little momentum,” Smith said.

Joe Mantiply came in to face Muncy, who hit a slow roller to third that scored Bellinger for a 2-all tie.

Dodgers starter Julio Urias gave up one run and three hits in 5 1/3 innings. The left-hander struck out five and walked one.

Gallen gave up a pair of two-out hits – a triple by Smith and an RBI double by Muncy – that allowed the Dodgers to tie it 1-all in the fourth.

“He was making pitches and keeping us off balance and kind of stalled us for a little bit,” Smith said.

The D-backs led 1-0 on Stone Garrett‘s sacrifice fly in the third. Sergio Alcantara singled and Daulton Varsho followed by grounding into a fielder’s choice. Second baseman Gavin Lux‘s throwing error allowed Alcantara to take third, and Varsho moved up to second. Three batters later, Alcantara scored.

In the ninth, the Dodgers challenged Kimbrel hitting pinch-hitter Jake McCarthy with a pitch leading off. After a review, crew chief James Hoye announced the call stood.

McCarthy thought he’d stolen second to put the go-ahead run in scoring position, but another replay review overturned the safe call. Walker then came to the plate and put the D-backs ahead on a 2-2 pitch from Kimbrel.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Dodgers: All-Star RHP Tony Gonsolin (forearm) threw to hitters in an up-and-down bullpen using his entire pitch mix. “The stuff looked good,” Roberts said. “My eyes were telling me it was a really good effort.” The 16-game winner will throw another bullpen in a couple of days. … RHP Blake Treinen (shoulder) won’t throw again until Saturday and see how he responds. “He’s frustrated. He’s not bouncing back,” Roberts said. … RHP Brusdar Graterol (elbow) was activated off the IL. … LHP David Price (wrist) threw a simulated inning to hitters. “He looked good. He was letting it go,” Roberts said.

STREAKS BUSTED

Turner went 0 for 4, including two strikeouts, to snap his 18-game hitting streak.

Turner also had another streak end. He had reached base safely in each of his last 47 games against the D-backs, the longest current streak for any active batter against any team.

UP NEXT

Diamondbacks: Hadn’t announced a starter for Friday’s opener of a three-game series against San Francisco.

Dodgers: LHP Andrew Heaney (3-2, 2.66 ERA) starts against Albert Pujols and the Cardinals in the series opener Friday.

Braves sweep Mets, take 2-game lead in East with 3 remaining

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ATLANTA — Dansby Swanson and Matt Olson homered for the third straight game, Travis d'Arnaud hit a go-ahead two-run single in the third inning, and Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 5-3, completing a three-game sweep of their NL East rival and taking a two-game lead in the division with three games to play.

The defending World Series champion Braves have been chasing the Mets the entire season. In the final series of the season, any combination of one Atlanta win or one Mets loss would give the Braves their fifth straight division title.

New York plays its final three games of the season against worst-in-the-majors Washington. Atlanta closed out the regular season with a three-game set in Miami. Should the season end Wednesday in a tie, Atlanta would win the division after claiming the season series 10-9 with Sunday’s victory.

The Braves won five of the last six games in the series, outscoring the Mets 42-19 over that stretch. New York had a 10 1/2-game lead on June 1 but now is the lower in the standings than at any point this season.

It was a lost weekend for New York, which came to Atlanta hoping to clinch its first division title since 2015. Instead, aces Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer lost Friday and Saturday before 15-game winner Chris Bassitt lasted just 2 2/3 innings on Sunday.

Swanson took Bassitt deep to right-center in the first with his 25th homer, and Atlanta took charge with a three-run third. Bassitt (15-9) issued a bases-loaded walk to Olson before d’Arnaud delivered a single up the middle to score Ronald Acuna Jr. and Austin Riley for a 4-3 lead. That chased Bassitt, who was charged with four runs, three hits and three walks.

Olson connected for his 33rd homer to make it 5-3 leading off the sixth, his 410-foot shot landing in the seats in right-center. Olson, in his first year with Atlanta, surpassed 100 RBIs for the second straight season.

Charlie Morton stranded runners on first and second in the first, but he gave up Daniel Vogelbach‘s 18th homer that tied it at 1 in the second. The righty struck out Francisco Lindor with runners on first and second to end the threat.

Jeff McNeil went deep off Morton in the third and Vogelbach followed with an RBI single to put the Mets up 3-1. Morton entered the game having allowed 28 homers, sixth-most in the NL.

Morton scuffled throughout his start, giving up three runs and nine hits in 4 1/3 innings as the 38-year-old made his first start since signing a $20 million, one-year contract to remain with Atlanta next season.

Dylan Lee (5-1) relieved Morton and pitched 1 1/3 innings, leaving after a walk to Brandon Nimmo with two outs in the sixth. Collin McHugh entered and struck out Francisco Lindor.

Raisel Iglesias faced four batters in the seventh, A.J. Minter faced the minimum in the eighth and closer Kenley Jansen converted his third save of the series with a clean ninth.

Jansen leads the NL with 40 saves in 47 chances.

The Braves’ bullpen, which posted a 1.70 ERA last month, pitched 8 2/3 scoreless innings the last two nights.

BIG NUMBERS

Atlanta leads the NL with 241 homers. And the Braves have their first 100-victory season since 2003.

TWO, DARN HOT

McNeil went 3 for 5 and has multiple hits in five straight games. His average is .326, one point behind the Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman for the NL batting title. In 23 career games at Truist Park, McNeil is hitting .395 with 12 runs, nine doubles, two homers, seven RBIs and four walks. … Jansen tied Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley for eighth place on the career list with 389. He’s also is the 10th closer to have four different seasons with at least 40 saves.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets All-Star RF Starling Marte (right middle finger fracture) has yet to begin swinging or throwing. … Braves 2B Ozzie Albies (broken right pinky finger) is still wearing a cast. … Braves RHP Spencer Strider still has not thrown as he gets treatment on a sore left oblique.

ATTENDANCE

The Braves drew 42,713 in their regular season finale, the club’s 42nd sellout of the season. Overall. that’s 3,129,931 for the season – and the most tickets sold since 2000. In 2019, the team’s last full season before the COVID-19 pandemic, Atlanta drew 2,655,100.

UP NEXT

Mets: RHP Carlos Carrasco (15-7, 3.95 ERA) will face Nationals RHP Cory Abbott (0-4, 5.11).

Braves: RHP Bryce Elder (2-3, 2.76 ERA) will face Marlins LHP Jesus Luzardo (3-7, 3.53).