Dodgers offense shows signs of life in Game 1 win vs. Mets

Depending on the point at which you watched the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 1 of their twin bill vs. the New York Mets on Tuesday, you’re likely coming away with a varying opinion of where the offense stands. 

The Dodgers had come to Queens on a five-game losing streak. They’d scored only one run in two of them and been shutout in another. Much of Tuesday presented as the same stagnant group. They mustered only four baserunners against Tylor Megill & had squandered each chance with runners on. A Freddie Freeman single with two outs generated the only run they had of which to speak.

In the ninth inning, though, there was some life. Crucially, it came from the bottom of the order. Teoscar Hernández started things off with one of his three hits. Gavin Lux followed. Chris Taylor squeezed in a run to tie things at two. The latter two, in particular, had struck out five times in six plate appearances to that point. 

Of course even then, there were some troublesome moments. Jason Heyward struck out in a noncompetitive at-bat. Andy Pages grounded into a double play to end it. But after Daniel Hudson fought his way through command issues in the ninth, the Dodgers were able to push it to the 10th. 

That’s when the magic happened. 

Mookie Betts singled to knock in the ghost runner Pages. After a Shohei Ohtani strike out, Freeman homered to give the Dodgers a 5-2 lead. They wouldn’t score again, but Hernández added another hit, while Lux flew out to the warning track. Sure seems like we’ve got some signs of life from the Dodger lineup. 

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Perhaps most important is where those signs came from. Freeman has struggled recently with runners in scoring position. He did all of his damage in that very situation on Tuesday. Lux & Taylor have been miserable toward the bottom of the order. They both had hits in clutch moments. 

It wasn’t perfect, and there were enough shortcomings to approach it with a cautious optimism. But for at least the first half of Tuesday’s Dodger action, the offense looked capable of being dangerous again.

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