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Hyun-Jin Ryu provides enough for Dodgers to slip by bottom-dwelling Marlins

Mike DiGiovanna, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Baseball

LOS ANGELES -- There was no earthquake like the 7.1-magnitute temblor that rattled Dodger Stadium on July 5, no strange atmospheric conditions or precipitation that would affect pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu's grip or footing on the mound.

Still, something about the Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander seemed askew Friday night. A control freak who had not walked two in an inning this season, Ryu walked two Miami batters in the second. He walked Miguel Rojas to lead off the third, matching his season-high for walks in a game.

Ryu, who walked 11 batters in 116 innings of his first 18 starts, giving him a major league-best 0.85 walks-per-nine-innings rate, also hit a batter in the fourth, only the second time this season he has plunked a hitter.

Not to worry. The worst team in the National League was unable to capitalize on a rare "off night" for Ryu, who allowed one run through four innings of a 2-1 victory over the Marlins before a sellout crowd of 52,471 in Dodger Stadium.

Ryu found his bearings after the fourth and retired 11 of the last batters he faced, striking out the side in the seventh, to improve to 11-2 and lower his major league-leading ERA to 1.76.

Kenta Maeda, in a pre-planned relief appearance after his rain-abbreviated two-inning start in Philadelphia on Wednesday, struck out two in a one-two-three eighth, and closer Kenley Jansen struck out the side in the ninth for his 24th save.

 

Ryu sandwiched a pair of two-out walks around Jorge Alforo's single in the second and escaped a bases-loaded, two-out jam by getting pitcher Zac Gallen to ground to the mound. After Rojas walked to open the third, Curtis Granderson lined into a double play.

Miami took a 1-0 lead in the fourth when Harold Ramirez reached on an infield single, beating Ryu to the bag on a grounder to the right of first baseman Joc Pederson, and Alforo roped an RBI double to the wall in left field.

Gallen, the bespectacled rookie right-hander, blanked the Dodgers on two hits through five innings, escaping a two-on, no-outs jam in the second, but got into trouble in the sixth when Alex Verdugo singled and Justin Turner walked.

Gallen struck out Cody Bellinger with an up-and-in 90-mph fastball -- the same pitch he whiffed the most valuable player candidate with in the fourth -- but he walked A.J. Pollock to load the bases.

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