Dodgers show their baseball mortality breaking with Brewers

After a torrid period of a month at the exit of the All Star Breakthe Dodgers the range did not exactly cool against the Brewers in Milwaukee this week.

But for the first time in a long time, it certainly looked deadly, as the team settled for a four-game split against a potential playoff foe after a Defeat 5-3 at American Family Field on Thursday.

“It’s Gonna Happen”, Director david roberts said. “We swung the sticks well. But the old adage says that a good throw is better than a good hit.

Going into this week’s series, the Dodgers’ hitting had been more than good.

Since the All-Star break, the Dodgers have averaged nearly 6½ points per game.

They were batting .283 as a team.

They seemed more dangerous than the two-story left field slide at the Brewers ballpark – which left Dodgers radio reporter David Vassegh with a broken wrist and six cracked ribs in a crash Wednesday that went viral online (and at the team’s club) after lightheartedly sharing the video on the team’s TV show.

Against a Brewers team with one of the best pitching staffs in the majors, however, the Dodgers’ offensive fireworks weren’t quite as explosive.

They have scored just 13 points in four games. They hit seven homers, but went five for 26 with runners in scoring position.

They scored four points apiece in the first two games – both of which would have been wins if not for Craig Kimbrel’s failed save on Tuesday – but were then limited to just two by Eric Lauer on Wednesday.

And in Thursday’s final, they faced their toughest task, taking on defending National League Cy Young Award winner Corbin Burnes on an afternoon right fielder. Mookie Bets had a day off scheduled.

“It’s never fun going up against these guys,” Roberts said.

Milwaukee's Andrew McCutchen celebrates with teammate Hunter Renfroe.

Milwaukee’s Andrew McCutchen, right, celebrates with teammate Hunter Renfroe after hitting a home run in the first inning Thursday.

(Morry Gash/Associated Press)

For the first five innings, it showed, with Burnes keeping the Dodgers off the board while his offense belted three home runs against the Dodgers starter. Andrew Heane.

Heaney struck out 10 batters, but he also gave up a solo homer to Andrew McCutchen in the first and then a two-run homer to himself in the third.

In the fifth inning, Heaney finally pulled McCutchen out for what should have been the last outing of the inning – only to see the ball go past receiver Will Smith to keep the inning alive.

Moments later, Hunter Renfroe homered to knock Heaney out of the game.

“It sucks,” Smith said. “You give first base on a freebie, you have to get the next guy out. And we didn’t.

Heaney added: “Things happen, you just have to do introductions.”

Leading 5-0 at the time, it looked like Burnes and the Brewers (53-54) were going to go from there.

Instead, the Dodgers (81-36) responded in the next half, going up the board with an RBI single from Smith. They came within two on a two-run triple from Gavin Lux.

Burnes’ day ended there.

“You watch him from the start, you thought he was going to go seven innings,” Roberts said. “For us not letting him miss six was a win in itself. … He’s a guy to beat in October. So I thought we had competed for 27 outs.

The last 10 of those takedowns, however, have gone without more points.

Lux was blocked in third by reliever Brad Boxberger to finish sixth. Left-handed side arm Taylor Rogers and veteran right-hander Matt Bush sailed seventh and eighth, respectively.

In the ninth, closest All-Star Devin Williams put an exclamation on the Brewers’ win, knocking out the side to snap the Dodgers’ five-game winning streak.

“They do a great job of preventing runs and every ball game was basically pretty close, so I’m not going to over-analyze how many runs we’ve scored this series,” Roberts said. “If they go out there and throw and catch the baseball, it’s tough. But I still think the quality of batsmen one through nine is there.

Cody Bellinger returns to training

Cody Bellinger defeats the Kansas City Royals on August 14.

Cody Bellinger defeats the Kansas City Royals on August 14.

(Reed Hoffmann/Associated Press)

After taking a few days off to “reset,” in Roberts’ words, Cody Bellinger returned to the lineup Thursday, going 0-4 with three strikeouts.

“We’ve had some really good conversations over the last two days,” Roberts said before the game of Bellinger, who is batting .204 this season.

“I’m not really looking for performance as far as process goes,” Roberts continued. “I just want to see his head is good, he has clarity, he takes good sticks, he has good swings.”

Roberts said part of the reason for the reset was that he could sense Bellinger was frustrated in the midst of a recent slump – evidenced by the fact that Bellinger didn’t fully shove a grounder first during his last game at bat on Monday.

“What it showed me was that he’s reached a point of frustration, that’s telling for me,” Roberts said. “Because it’s not intentional. It’s not disrespectful. It’s just that he’s frustrated because he wants to do so well. So that tells me as a manager that he needs a shot.

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