No-Hit Sparks Fire for Dodgers

Being no-hit is the baseball equivalent of hitting rock bottom. The Los Angeles Dodgers had just been swept by the emerging powerhouse that is the San Diego Padres squad, which was bad enough. However, being no-hit by the Chicago Cubs was an absolute embarrassment for the reigning World Champions. Sometimes it takes an embarrassment to shake a team and wake them up. This is exactly what happened with the Dodgers. Since they were no-hit by the Cubs, the Dodgers have won seven in a row. This streak includes winning the next three games against the Cubs, sweeping the first-place San Francisco Giants, and taking the first two games from the Washington Nationals. Let’s take a look at what happened.

Swept by the Padres

Coming into the series with the Padres, the Dodgers had just finished a pretty good run. They sandwiched taking two out of three from the Texas Rangers and Philidelphia Phillies between sweeps of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Arizona Diamondbacks. Consequently, they felt good going into San Diego despite having multiple key players out. The Dodgers were only able to muster two runs on three hits. Luckily, the two of the hits were homers, but no one was on base either time. They went on to lose 2-6. However, not having Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, and Max Muncy playing makes it hard to beat an emerging powerhouse.  Of course, that begs the question, how would the Padres have done without Fernando Tatis Jr., Jake Cronenworth, and Manny Machado? The answer is zero runs and three hits. Further, if you remove Julio Urias’ rough four-run first, then you get a two-two tie.

Muncy came back the next game and it was much closer, 2-3. Bellinger finally returned from his leg fracture the next night, and it was again a really close game. Blake Treinen came in and got the last two outs of the seventh, then came back out for the eighth in a 3-3 tie. Treinen led off the eighth by getting the first batter out before giving up a double and a weak infield single to his final two batters before the hook came out.

The Padres Eric Hosmer laid down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners up to second and third, and new pitcher Victor Gonzalez responded by loading them up with an intentional walk before unintentionally walking in a run. A sacrifice fly scored the second run of the inning and the final score of 3-5 was reached in the bottom of the eighth. The Padres had swept the Dodgers for the first time since 2013.

No-Hit by the Cubs

After being swept by the Padres, the Dodgers came home to face the Cubs. Walker Buehler turned in yet another Quality Start in the game, giving up three runs on five hits through six. However, that was not good enough without any support, and he was handed his first loss since 2019–23 starts. “Without any support” might be a major understatement. The Dodgers were held hitless by the four Cubs pitchers who combined to no-hit the reigning World Champions. The last couple of relievers that came in for the Cubs said that they did not even realize that there were no hits until their work was done.

This was the first time that any team has ever no-hit the Dodgers twice at Dodger Stadium. Jake Arrieta threw the first one for the Cubs in 2015. It was also the first combined no-hitter in Cubs Franchise history. Further, it was the first time a team with three former MVP winners in the lineup has been no-hit.  That may be due to the fact that it is very rare for any lineup to have three MVP winners in it. That notwithstanding, it was the first time that the reigning World Champions have been no-hit since 2013.  This no-hitter was rock bottom for the Dodgers. It also started a fire.

We Didn’t Start the Fire

The Dodgers have been absolutely on fire since hitting rock bottom. In fact, they have not lost a game since then, going 7-0. The Cubs, on the other hand, have been the exact opposite. They have lost eight in a row since the combined no-hitter at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers won the next three games against the Cubs, swept the first-place Giants in two games, and have taken the first two of four from the Nationals. They are looking to continue this success into the All-Star break, which is just over a week away.

The Dodgers are currently half of a game behind their rival Giants for first in the NL West. They will look to catapult into first-place with these last two games against the Nationals before ending the first half with four against the Miami Marlins and then three against the Diamondbacks. The Giants will be playing two more against Arizona before ending the first half with three against the St. Louis Cardinals and then three with the Nationals. It is a very exciting NL West right now, and that does not look to be changing any time soon. Stay tuned.

 

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Embed from Getty Images

 

Players Mentioned:

Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, Fernando Tatis Jr., Jake Cronenworth, Manny Machado, Julio Urias, Blake Treinen, Eric Hosmer, Victor Gonzalez, Walker Buehler, Jake Arrieta


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