The Dodgers staged a pair of late rallies to defeat the Cincinnati Reds 11-8 in 11 innings on Saturday in one of the most improbable comebacks since the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles 53 years ago. Matt Kemp hit two home runs and drove in a career-high six runs, including a game-tying grand slam in the eighth inning after the Dodgers were down 7-2. The Dodgers scored four runs in the 11th off Carlos Fisher to grab the lead.
On the Fox broadcast of the game, it was noted that today's win by the Dodgers was just their fourth since moving to Los Angeles when they were trailing after seven innings by five or more runs. The last occurrence was on May 9, 1994 against the Astros. The Dodgers were down by those five runs because starter Clayton Kershaw faded fast after a tremendous start.
Kershaw came into the game with a 12-inning scoreless streak, and through five innings he was nearly untouchable. He struck out nine of the first 15 hitters he faced, allowing just one hit. He faced the minimum number of batters, too, because he picked off Joey Votto after the reigning MVP singled. However, the Reds staged a two-out rally in the sixth, tying the game on a bloop single by Brandon Phillips before Votto crushed a slider for a three-run home run to give the Reds a 4-1 lead. The Reds added three more runs in the seventh, which gave them a seemingly insurmountable 7-2 lead.
To put the Dodgers' comeback in perspective, the Dodgers had only scored five runs in a game 18 times in their first 58 contests. Yet, they plated five runs in the eighth, then four more in the 11th to pick up the improbable win. In addition to Kemp, Jamey Carroll had four hits and a walk, and drove in the go-ahead run in the 11th with an RBI single. Aaron Miles had three hits and drove in three runs himself.
Rookie Javy Guerra pitched 1 1/3 innings, in the 10th and 11th innings, picking up his first major league win. Guerra even batted in the top of the 11th, and walked in his first plate appearance as a professional. Ramon Troncoso got the final two outs to close out the win, but not before the Reds got the tying run to the plate in Brandon Phillips.
For more news and information on today's game, or on the Dodgers, be sure to read the SB Nation blog True Blue LA.