Despite a nice little rally from the Minnesota Twins in the end courtesy of the awful Paco Rodriguez pitching extravaganza, Kenley Janses was there to save the win for both the Los Angeles Dodgers and Zack Greinke, picking up a 6-4 victory and winning the 10,000th game for the franchise.
Both the Dodgers and Grenike are the story here – joining the Giants, Cubs and Braves as the only franchises to win 10,000 games and improving to 15-12 as they win the postponed series opener between the two teams before a doubleheader that will close out the series. For Greinke, the highest paid player in Baseball before the Kershaw contract kicks in next season, it was about dominance that is unique in the majors.
He is now 5-0 this season following six innings in which he allowed 7 hits and struck out 6 batters. He has a 2.04 ERA so far this season, and has now gone 18 straight regular-season starts of at least five innings while allowing two runs or fewer, the longest run since 1914. He also has opened a season with wins in five straight decisions for the first time since he was 6-0 in his AL Cy Young Award season of 2009.
It almost didn’t happen for him. The Twins were behind 5-1 in the 7th and after they had their bases loaded situation messed up thanks to Chris Withrow figuring out the knot, they managed to make things complicated in the ninth inning, as Paco Rodriguez went in to close the game. He almost blew it by allowing three hits and three walks, resulting in Sam Fuld scoring off of a Eduardo Escobar single, followed by a double from Trvor Plouffe, allowing Escobar and Dozier to score.
Kenley Janses was called to make the save, and he retired Chris Colabello to get his 10th save in 12 attempts this season. Escobar also started the scoring in the game during the second inning, as his double allowed Josmil Pinto to score, while he himself stretched the play to third, caught before reaching base.
A day about history for the Dodgers, who also got some offense with four players: Yasiel Puig, Adrian Gonzalez, Andre Ethier and Drew Butera getting multiple hits. Uribe was the only one with a double-RBI play (a single that scored Ethier and Kemp), while Ethier improved to 24 RBIs this season. It wasn’t the most impressive of starts for Kyle Gibson (3-2), allowing nine hits and five earned runs in the 6.2 innings he was in the game for.
The Dodgers will be starting Dan Haren (3-0, 2.03 ERA) and probably Red Patterson for the doubleheader, while the Twins are likely to use Mike Pelfrey (0-2, 7.32) followed by Kris Johnson. The Dodgers had one night to relish a bit in the franchise’s history while the present and future look pretty good as well considering the money being well spent on incredible talent all across the board, but the NL West isn’t looking very easy at the moment.