Dodgers look like team going through the motions in 3-1 loss to Padres
This is how it’s going to be now. The Dodgers seemingly playing out the string, before a half-empty Dodger Stadium, struggling to muster anything that resembles an offense.
One day after officially being eliminated from the postseason, they came out Wednesday looking lifeless and forlorn.
They went quietly, this time 3-1 to the Padres, Miguel Tejada’s two-run homer enabling San Diego to reclaim first place in the National League West.
The good news: The Dodgers have only 10 games left.
The defeat dropped the Dodgers’ record to 73-79, marking the second time this season they have been six games under .500; the other was when they were 8-14 on April 29.
Despite a solid start by Ted Lilly, Wednesday just offered more of the second-half fade that the Dodgers have been specializing in of late. They managed three hits.
Wednesday marked their sixth consecutive loss to the Padres. Since starting the season 5-1 against San Diego, they have gone 2-9.
One night after being on the wrong end of Clayton Richard’s first career shutout, they scraped together one run against Tim Stauffer.
Stauffer was the emergency starter for the Padres on Sept. 6 when Mat Latos came down with the flu. He held the Dodgers to one run in four innings and has been in their rotation since.
Stauffer (5-4) gave up his only run in the second inning after Matt Kemp led off with a double and advanced to third on Jay Gibbons fly ball to the center field wall. Kemp scored on A.J. Ellis’ groundout.
The Dodgers’ offense had peaked.
The Padres scored all three of their runs against Lilly (8-12) in the third. Chase Headley led off with a single and was sacrificed to second on a bunt by Stauffer.
David Eckstein sent a sharp bouncer into the hole that was fielded nicely by shortstop Rafael Furcal, but his throw bounced past James Loney at first for an error. Loney threw off-balance to the plate, the throw bouncing past Ellis for another error as Headley scored.
Tejada then put the Padres ahead with his two-run homer to left. It was his eighth home run since joining the Padres before the July 31 non-waiver trading deadline.
Lilly went seven innings, giving up three runs on eight hits. He struck out eight and his only walk was intentional. After starting 5-0 as a Dodger, however, he is 0-4 in his last five starts.
Lilly is eligible to become a free agent at the end of the season.
After Andre Ethier’s second single in the third, the Dodgers did not manage another hit against Stauffer and three San Diego relievers. Heath Bell pitched a scoreless ninth for his 43rd save.
-- Steve Dilbeck