Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers struggled to get their bats going against Blake Snell and the Tampa Bay Rays pitching staff, amounting to a 6-4 loss in Game 2 of the World Series.
The second matchup saw the Rays send their ace to the mound, while the Dodgers relied heavily on their bullpen. Tony Gonsolin got the start on just two days’ rest and wasn’t expected to provide much length.
That was indeed the case as he recorded just four outs, giving up a hit and a run as the opener. Dylan Floro followed him and promptly retired all three batters faced.
Victor Gonzalez also got some work in before handing the ball to Dustin May. The right-hander was not particularly effective, as he yielded three runs on four hits in 1.1 innings of work.
After May’s departure, the trio of Joe Kelly, Alex Wood and Jake McGee combined to allow just one run over the final four innings of play.
The biggest takeaway, however, was the continued struggles for Gonsolin and May this postseason. “I don’t know. I still trust them, I still believe in them,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of the rookies.
“They’ve just got to make pitches. I know they want to execute pitches. We’ll kind of look at the video and see what we can be better at. They’re still going to need to get big outs for us.”
After logging three shutout innings in the National League Division Series, May’s effectiveness would wane in the NL Championship Series, where he allowed three runs and 12 baserunners against the Atlanta Braves over three appearances.
As for Gonsolin, he was tabbed for seven runs and 11 baserunners in three appearances against the Braves — two of which were starts. With the lack of off days during the series, he was one of a few pitchers that balanced different roles.
“It’s a big ask, to be quite frank. Right now with the off days, every team is going to go down a starter. So people have to adjust to certain roles,” Roberts said.
“And when you’re talking about playing seven days in a row and how you can get as many outs as you can in the CS, yeah, these guys are in uncharted territory. A credit to them, they’re not making any excuses. They expect themselves to make pitches.
“Like I said, it’s different, certainly, but we still need those guys to get important outs for us to win this thing.”
Gonsolin embracing what Dodgers ask
Gonsolin embraced the challenges that come with filling different roles during the postseason. “I want the ball. I want to go out there and give our team a chance to win every time I pitch,” he said.
“It’s been a lot of fun, it’s been a learning experience for me with starting and throwing within three days. I’m just trying to take it as a learning experience and grow from it.”
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