This is why they call it Pitcher’s Paradise.
The Los Angeles Dodgers, whose starting rotation reached the point of collapse at the end of the season, snapped their losing streak thanks to an unexpectedly strong performance from a rookie pitcher.
Ryan Pepio, 26, is a rookie right-hander in his second year in the majors.
On Aug. 8 (ET), Pepio took the mound against the Miami Marlins at Dodger Stadium,안전놀이터 allowing just one hit and no runs over seven innings to lead the Dodgers to a 10-0 victory.
The Dodgers, who were in danger of being swept by Miami after losing two straight to Clayton Kershaw and Lance Lynn on June 6 and 7, respectively, were able to pick up a valuable win thanks to Pepio’s unexpectedly “perfect” outing. The Dodgers, who all but clinched the NL West title, improved to 85-54.
Pepio’s performance was a career-high and arguably the best by a Dodger pitcher this season. He faced 20 batters and didn’t allow a single base runner from the first inning until the bottom of the seventh.
His perfect game was broken in the bottom of the seventh when he threw a five-pitch 87.5-mph changeup down and away on a 2B2S count to left fielder Josh Bell, but Bell got a little too much on it and lined it to center field. But Pepio quickly got the next batter, Jazz Cheesholm Jr. on a 93.6-mph fastball outside for a swinging strike to end the inning.
As Pepio walked into the dugout after the seventh, Clayton Kershaw greeted him with a hug and congratulated him on his performance, and manager Dave Roberts walked up to him and patted him on the shoulder. With Pepio’s record-breaking pitch count up to 84 and the score at 10, it was time for a pitching change in the eighth inning.
Manager Dave Roberts talks to Pepio after his defense in the bottom of the seventh inning. Photo by MLB.TV
Pepio is a temporary starter. He earned his first win of the season on Aug. 31 against the Arizona Diamondbacks, pitching five innings of two-hit ball to pick up his first win of the season, and in his last start eight days later, he showed an upgrade.
His fastball topped out at 95.1 mph and averaged 93.8 mph, and he shut down Miami’s offense with an excellent changeup and fastball, with the changeup in particular generating a 33% swinging strike rate.
Pepio made his major league debut in May of last year and bounced up and down the minors to prove himself. This season, he was called up last month and got another chance, throwing a scoreless inning in both starts to boost his chances of a postseason role. With Julio Urias on administrative leave and Lynn and Kershaw showing signs of fatigue, the Dodgers have a lot of postseason starting options.
Dodgers’ Chris Taylor high-fives teammates after hitting a three-run home run in the eighth inning. AFP
The Dodgers offense came out firing in support of their new ace. In the third inning, Will Smith singled up the middle to drive in a run, and in the fifth, Chris Taylor singled with runners on second and third and Enrique Hernandez’s