LOS ANGELES — Cody Bellinger hit a three-run homer and rookie Tony Gonsolin pitched six stellar innings of two-hit ball to earn his first major league victory in the Los Angeles Dodgers‘ 8-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday night.
Los Angeles became the majors’ first team to 75 victories and improved to 4-1 on its 10-game homestand with another big offensive game to back another pitching prospect who looks ready for the majors.
Gonsolin (1-1) retired 14 of the Cardinals’ first 15 batters and took a no-hitter into the fifth inning of his second career start. He yielded one walk and struck out seven, including Paul Goldschmidt with his 90th pitch to end his home debut with a standing ovation.
Michael Wacha (6-5) couldn’t get out of the fourth inning for the Cardinals, who dropped to 0-3 on their five-game California road trip. St. Louis was shut out for the second time in five games and the ninth time this season.
Bellinger crushed his 37th homer in the first inning to pull even in the Los Angeles metroplex homer race with Mike Trout, who also hit his 37th for the Angels in Cincinnati. Milwaukee’s Christian Yelich, an LA-area native himself, kept the major league lead with his 38th and 39th homers in Pittsburgh earlier Monday.
Three days after redheaded rookie Dustin May‘s promising major league debut, the pitching-rich Dodgers got yet another outstanding start from a prospect as they begin what’s essentially a two-month audition for spots on their postseason staff.
Los Angeles (75-40) has an 8 ½-game lead over Atlanta atop the overall NL standings and a whopping 18-game lead over San Francisco and Arizona on the path to its seventh straight NL West title.
Gonsolin, a 25-year-old right-hander from Northern California, was a ninth-round draft pick who got this opportunity with three strong years in the minors. Six days after he earned a four-inning save at Colorado in his second big league appearance, Gonsolin made the most of a chance to fill the rotation spot temporarily vacated by injured major league ERA leader Hyun-Jin Ryu.
Gonsolin yielded only a second-inning walk before Kolten Wong’s two-out double in the fifth.
He worked with a big early lead thanks to Bellinger, who put his shot deep down the right field line. The slugger has three homers in his last four starts following a 12-game homerless drought.
Seager drove in his first run in eight games with a two-out double that bounced into the left field stands in the third. Pederson then added his 24th homer in the fourth, moving just two shy of his career-high.
Wacha yielded seven hits and six runs in his first loss since June.
Beaty got a two-run double in the fifth, giving him six RBIs in his four starts in August.
Cardinals: LF Tyler O’Neill is getting treatment on his strained left wrist in St. Louis. He is expected to get a rehab assignment before he returns to the lineup.
Dodgers: OF Alex Verdugo wasn’t in the starting lineup as planned after he felt lower back tightness. He missed last Thursday’s game with the same problem. … OF A.J. Pollock wasn’t in the starting lineup for the third time in four games due to a groin injury.
Clayton Kershaw (10-2, 2.85 ERA) has 118 strikeouts in 111 1/3 career innings against the Cardinals. St. Louis counters with Miles Mikolas (7-11, 4.00 ERA), who hasn’t pitched at Dodger Stadium since 2012.
Source: Fox Sports