Muncy's homer in 10th lifts Dodgers over Blue Jays 2-1
Toronto Blue Jays' Bo Bichette spins around on a swinging strike, next toLos Angeles Dodgers catcher Will Smith during the 10th inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Beth Harris, The Associated Press
Published Thursday, August 22, 2019 2:59AM EDT
LOS ANGELES -- Tied in extra innings at home, the Los Angeles Dodgers always expect to win.
"Who it's going to be is always a question," manager Dave Roberts said.
It was Max Muncy's turn.
Frustrated after striking out in his first two at-bats, Muncy homered in the bottom of the 10th to lift the Dodgers over the Toronto Blue Jays 2-1 Wednesday night for their 50th home victory of the season.
It was the Dodgers' 11th walk-off win this year. Muncy has homered in a career-high five straight games.
"Got a little bit of a rhythm going," he said, having drawn walks in two other plate appearances. "The biggest sign is if I'm getting walks. That means I'm not chasing."
Muncy sent his 33rd homer to centre field off Tim Mayza (1-3) with one out. The slugger picked up the Dodgers after closer Kenley Jansen gave up a tying homer to Rowdy Tellez with one out in the ninth. Fans booed Jansen after he got two more outs to end the inning.
"I was hunting that pitch," Tellez said of Jansen's cutter. "I wanted to get the pitch before it got to me. At this level, with how good these guys are, you've got to pick one spot, one pitch and kind of throw up prayers hoping that he throws it there."
Will Smith also went deep and Walker Buehler threw seven shutout innings for the major league-leading Dodgers, who have baseball's best home record as well at 50-16.
Buehler allowed five hits, struck out eight and walked none. Pedro Baez (7-2) got the win with one inning of relief.
The Dodgers struggled to eke out some offence one night after pounding out 15 hits in a 16-3 victory highlighted by five home runs.
Joe Kelly retired the side in the eighth against a trio of second-generation major leaguers: pinch-hitter Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio.
That set up Jansen, who couldn't get the job done.
Still, Roberts continues to back Jansen, who has 26 saves but none since Aug. 6.
"I know Kenley feels bad," Roberts said. "If a save situation arises, he'll be back out there. Right now, Kenley is our closer. I still think Kenley is tracking in a positive direction regardless of the outcome."
Jansen didn't appear in the clubhouse before it was closed to media.
Smith slugged his 12th homer on the first pitch from Zack Godley in the fourth. It was Smith's sixth homer in eight games.
"It's the first pitch of an outing and guy ambushes you and takes you deep," Godley said. "You can't even help but tip your cap and move on to the next guy."
Chris Taylor followed with a triple, but he got thrown out at the plate after outfielders Randal Grichuk and Teoscar Hernandez collided trying to field the ball.
It was a bullpen game for Toronto, which used six pitchers and lost its fourth in a row. Wilmer Font started and went two innings before Buddy Boshers lasted 1 1/3 innings.
Dodgers: RHP Ross Stripling (right biceps tendinitis) tossed his entire mix in a 25-pitch bullpen without soreness. He'll throw another 'pen in a few days and face hitters next week. ... RHP Dylan Floro went on the IL with a left intercostal strain a day after being recalled from the minors.
Guerrero was out of Toronto's starting lineup but entered as a pinch-hitter in the ninth. Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said he didn't want to play the rookie infielder on back-to-back days so soon after Guerrero sat out with left knee inflammation.
FOLEY GOES DOWN
RHP Sean Reid-Foley was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo to work on his command after getting tagged with the loss in Toronto's 16-3 defeat Tuesday. He lasted just 1 2/3 innings. Reid-Foley has issued 21 walks in 31 2/3 innings this season. LHP Thomas Pannone was optioned to Triple-A on Monday, leaving the Blue Jays with just two starters on their 25-man roster.
Blue Jays: RHP Jacob Waguespack (4-1, 4.20 ERA) starts the series finale Thursday. He's allowed six earned runs over 21 innings in his last four outings.
Dodgers: Kenta Maeda (8-8, 4.18) yielded three runs in the first 1 2/3 innings of his last start at Atlanta and struck out seven in a row at one point but didn't get out of the fifth.