Dodgers get a hometown performance to remember for John Ely, and a day to forget from Xavier Paul in 1-0 loss to Cubs
That was a nice story the Dodgers had going Thursday, John Ely returning to his hometown and pitching like it was just another start at nearby Flossmoor High School.
For seven innings he was not only as brilliant as he had been since dropping in from the baseball heavens to help stabilize the Dodgers’ rotation, he was probably even better.
But in the eighth he gave up a pair of hits that were both misplayed by Xavier Paul in right field, and that led to the only run in the Dodgers’ 1-0 loss to the Cubs.
It was the second time in three games that the Dodgers couldn’t manage a run against the Cubs. They lost 3-0 on Tuesday.
Ely (3-2) was just short of spectacular, allowing four hits and the one run in 7 1/3 innings, walking two and striking out four. Remember, this is a kid who had never pitched above Double-A until this season.
Ely grew up on the Southside of Chicago a White Sox fan. His family are such die-hard Sox fans that his father refused to attend Ely’s Chicago debut Thursday in Wrigley.
His father missed a performance that deserved a better ending. It might have happened, too, if Paul had not looked so completely lost in right.
Paul plays the outfield like someone with zero baseball instincts, not someone who has been in the Dodgers’ organization for eight years.
Mike Fontenot lined a leadoff hit to right that Paul took a bizarre direct line on, missing the ball, crashing into the wall and even losing his glove in the process. Fontenot, who had just entered the game as a defensive replacement, ended up with a triple.
One out later, Tyler Colvin hit a ball similar to Fontenot that was just fair and Paul again took a direct line, overran the ball and ran into the wall. This time it was ruled a double and error.
-- Steve Dilbeck
Photo: John Ely pitches Thursday. Credit: Jerry Lai, U.S. Presswire.