R.A. Dickey bounced back from one of his worst starts of the year to lead the New York Mets over the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-0 on Friday night. Dickey tossed eight scoreless innings, allowing just three hits, with ten strike outs, en route to his MLB leading 12th victory and winning his career-best 10th decision in-a-row:
Dickey cruised through the first six innings retiring 17 of the first 18 batters he faced; including 8-straight before and after the Dodgers first hit. A hit that should have been caught by Andres Torres with two-out in the bottom of the third inning. It seemed as if Dickey was well on his way to his third one-hitter over his last four starts until A.J. Ellis put Torres mind at ease when he ripped a one-out single into right field, giving the Dodgers their first legit hit off the 37-year-old knuckleballer in the bottom of the seventh inning. R.A. would eventually surrender a third hit, a double to Tony Gwynn Jr. in the bottom of the eighth. Neither man would pass second base as R.A. stymied Dodger hitters all night long, continuing his run of brilliance in the 2012 season. Dickey’s only rough patch of the evening came in the seventh, after he walked Bobby Abreu prior to the Ellis hit. But with two-on and one-out he induced James Loney to hit into an inning-ending double play.
The best moment of the game came in the bottom of the fifth inning when R.A. Dickey drilled Dodger short stop Dee Gordon in the buttocks (Forest Gump voice) as retaliation for L.A. starter Aaron Harang hitting Ruben Tejada just one half- inning earlier. It was obvious that Harang drilled Tejada on purpose — Ruben was 3-for-3 to that point — and so, Dickey did the right thing. I thought this tweet by our pal JD summed it up best:
Following the game, Dickey spoke about the hit-by-pitch, saying:
“You know. I knew that question was gonna come. I’m not gonna take the bait. I’m gonna tell you that I tried to throw a fastball in and it slipped out of my hand a little bit.”
Dickey finished the month of June 5-0, with three complete games, two one-hitters, and a 1.12 ERA. And, if you take-away his last start versus the Yankees, Dickey has allowed just five hits over his last three starts; a span of 26 innings without having allowed an earned run in the month of June. R.A. was asked to sum up his last month of dominance to which he answered by stating:
I think I would sum it up with the way I effort to try to perform. That is consistent. I want to consistently give my team a chance to win every time out. Be trust worthy and that’s who I want to be. I’m glad to be able to say that the last month, in reflection, I have been that. And that’s nice.”