Dodgers’ slump continues with loss to streaking Mets

LOS ANGELES — The daily drama that is life in Shohei Ohtani’s orbit can’t obscure a simple fact.

The Dodgers are not playing very well right now.

Francisco Lindor’s two-run home run after a Mookie Betts throwing error broke a seventh-inning tie and the New York Mets went on to a 9-4 victory over the Dodgers on Friday night.

The loss was the Dodgers’ fourth in their past five games and sixth in their past eight. They were outhit 14-6 by a Mets team that has won five in a row and six of its past seven.

The Mets bolted out to a 4-0 lead against Dodgers starter Yoshinobu Yamamoto.

Yamamoto did solve one problem. Seven of the eight runs and eight of the 13 hits he allowed in his first four starts came in the first inning – most of those in South Korea, where he didn’t pitch beyond the first inning.

This time, he retired the Mets in order in the first inning, striking out two, and needed just nine pitches to do it.

Trouble was stuck in traffic and arrived late. Yamamoto gave up a home run to D.J. Stewart in the second inning. An error by catcher Will Smith on a dribbler in front of the plate extended the inning long enough for Harrison Bader to drive in a second run with an RBI single.

Yamamoto walked the leadoff batter in the third and gave up a double to Starling Marte. Pete Alonso drove in one run with a single and another scored on a sacrifice fly to make it a 4-0 Mets getaway.

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Shut out by the Washington Nationals on Wednesday, the Dodgers’ offense took its time getting started on Friday.

Shohei Ohtani walked to lead off the fourth inning, stole second and scored on a two-out RBI single by Teoscar Hernandez, ending a stretch of 12 scoreless innings for the Dodgers.

In the fifth, Andy Pages led off with a double and scored on Ohtani’s two-out RBI single – raising his average with runners in scoring position to .100 (2 for 20).

In the sixth, the Dodgers tied the score when two errors by third baseman Joey Wendle helped load the bases with two outs for Chris Taylor. Taylor came into the game 1 for 35 this season with a stretch of 30 hitless at-bats.

He made that 0 for 31 when he hit into a double play in the third inning. But that ground ball came off his bat at 100 mph. His two-run single in the sixth came off his bat at 104.7 mph and tied the score.

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It didn’t stay tied for long.

Yamamoto made it through six innings for the first time in his MLB career. Daniel Hudson took over in the seventh and struck out Brandon Nimmo to start the inning. Betts handled a chopper by Marte but his throw to first was in the dirt and wide, pulling Freddie Freeman off the bag.

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Hudson got ahead 0-and-2 to the next batter, Lindor. But Lindor fought back to a full count and slammed a hanging slider from Hudson into the right field pavilion.

The Mets added two more runs in the eighth inning off an ineffective Joe Kelly, whose ERA swelled to 7.27. Ryan Brasier’s sits at an even 5.00 after he gave up another run on three hits in the ninth.

More to come on this story.

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