The Dodgers survived injuries to Cody Bellinger, Gavin Lux and Tony Gonsolin in less than three weeks.
On Monday they faced a different dose of adversity: a game they had never led, their first loss of the season, and a heartbreaking hit that brought Mookie Betts to his knees.
Mariners pitcher Rafael Montero hit Betts on the right forearm with a 95-mile sinker in the ninth inning of the Dodgers’ 4-3 defeat at T-Mobile Park. Betts stayed in the game, except that Corey Seager played a double game at the end of the game.
Manager Dave Roberts said Betts’ status should be determined for Tuesday’s game in Seattle.
« Obviously Mookie is going to want to be in there, » said Roberts. « I have to make sure it doesn’t affect his throw or swing. He’s pretty honest with me. If he feels like he can play, he’s in there. »
Repetitions showed that Montero’s pitch hit Betts in the muscular part of his forearm. Roberts described it as a « soft tissue injury ». While it was possible Betts would have an MRI scan, these more often indicate injuries with « hard tissue » like bones.
It was a painful end to a disappointing game for the Dodgers (13: 4), who also lost in San Diego on Sunday. Betts, Seager and Justin Turner hit the base eight times in 14 record appearances. The rest of the lineup went 1 for 21 with two walks. They finished 2 to 9 with runners in goal position as a team.
May (1-1) allowed four runs in five innings. Only three were earned due to a mistake made by second base player Chris Taylor.
Taylor Trammell, who started the day at .152, hit a solo home run and scored an RBI double that led to the Mariners’ critical fourth run.
« It was a tough feeling for me, » May said when he hit from behind. « I think I failed the team today. »
Seager’s third home run of the season gave him the right for a day to brag about his brother Kyle, the Mariners-named batsman who ended up 0-4.
« We had the winning run on first base in the ninth inning, » said manager Dave Roberts. « I thought we were just a bit behind the 8-ball. »
At the end of the first inning, May allowed a one-off single for Ty France, followed by a two-part home run against Jose Marmolejos, who put Seattle 2-0 up. In the second inning, Trammell started his third home run of the season, a counter-shot to the left into the center. The Dodgers quickly followed 3-0.
Corey Seager got a couple of runs back in one fell swoop. Betts hit a double against Mariners starter Justus Sheffield (1-1) in the third inning. Seager hit the next field 425 feet to midfield, a two-part home run.
The next batsman, Turner, counted everything before hitting a square from left to left. But Sheffield knocked out Will Smith on three so-called strikes and stopped the potential bond run on the second base. Smith walked 0 for 4 out of the cleanup hole.
The Dodgers were still 3-2 down in the fourth inning when Luis Torrens Taylor hit a routine ground ball on second base. The ball hit the heel of his glove because of a mistake. With Torrens first, Trammell cut a double into the right field and drove in the Mariners’ fourth run.
All runscoring hits May allowed met his four-seater, sinker and cut fastball. With all speed, said May, his fastball was « everywhere ».
In the meantime, all eight strikes met his curveball in May. The right-hander threw 92 spaces and caused 13 swings and failures – eight on the curve.
« It felt right out of your hand today, » May said of the curveball, « so I’ve used it where I felt I could use it and it worked today. »
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The Dodgers threatened to tie the game in the seventh inning. Betts singled and Seager took a walk against Mariners reliever Anthony Misiewicz, putting the runners on first and second bases.
Kendall Graveman relieved Misiewicz, knocked out Turner a second time and induced a low-line ride from Smith. Only a bouncing catch by Dylan Moore on the third base prevented the ball from landing in the outfield and driving on the play.
The Dodgers only brought five balls into play that fell for hits. They hope for better luck with Betts’ test results.
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