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Eduardo Rodriguez's memorable outing turns in a hurry

Rob Bradford
October 27, 2018 - 10:46 pm

LOS ANGELES -- Eduardo Rodriguez was trending toward a memorable outing. Making his first start since Sept. 20, the lefty had shut down the Dodgers for his first five innings. 

Then came the sixth inning.

Rodriguez exited from his outing having given up four runs in the sixth, three of them coming from a two-out blast off the bat of Yasiel Puig deep into the left-field seats.

The pivotal sixth inning was made even more frustrating for the Red Sox and Rodriguez due to the fact they could have easily been out of the frame without giving up a run. 

After hitting David Freese to begin the inning, the Sox starter struck out Max Muncy. Justin Turner started to then make things uncomfortable with a double down the left field line, paving the way for an intentional walk to Manny Machado. It was a strategy that appeared to be on the cusp of bearing fruit when Cody Bellinger pounded what appeared to be a tailor-made, inning-ending 3-2-3 grounder to first baseman Steve Pearce.

Pearce gathered the ball and threw a strike to catcher Christian Vazquez for the inning's second out. But Vazquez's throw was in direct line with the baserunner, allowing the ball to sail toward right field. The Dodgers had their first run and runners on first and second.

That left Rodriguez to face Puig while sitting at 88 pitches.

Five pitches later, on a 3-1 count, the Dodgers' slugger turned on a 92 mph fastball from Rodriguez, resulting in the pitcher spiking his glove to the ground before the ball reached the stands. He would immediately be replaced by reliever Matt Barnes.

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