10/25/20 ARLINGTON TX - In a bizarre game for the ages, Saturday night's World Series game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays ended shockingly as the Rays won 8-7.
There is a saying that you can't change the game in the ninth inning, but the Rays proved that you can absolutely do that in a dramatic fashion.
The Dodgers led 7-6 in the ninth inning when closer Kenley Jansen got the first out and failed to capture two outs, instead of allowing two runs to score that allowed the Rays to tie the series 2-2.
Jansen gave up a single to Kevin Kiermaier, and Joey Wendle lined out for the second out. He walked Randy Arozarena, and Brett Phillips connected on a single to center field. Chris Taylor who did not have control of the ball yet got it to Max Muncy where it bounced off the glove of Will Smith.
Jansen had no time to react in order to provide help at home plate that allowed two runs to score for Tampa Bay. He blew the save opportunity that forced the Dodgers now to win two games in order to be World Series champions.
"You can't beat yourself up. I didn't give up one hard hit," Jansen said postgame.
This is not the first time Jansen has blown a save opportunity in the World Series for the Dodgers. According to Baseball-Reference, Jansen lost Game 5 of the World Series against the Houston Astros in 2017. He also blew two saves in 2018 against the Boston Red Sox in the World Series.
The Game 4 loss does not solely fall on the shoulders of Jansen, but also Dodgers manager Dave Roberts who made questionable moves throughout the game. Robert later admitted keeping reliever Pedro Baez on the mound longer than he should've.
In the eight- inning, Brusdar Graterol only gave up one hit and protected the lead, which became a head-scratching decision by Roberts to pull him, instead of allowing him to complete the ninth inning.
The Dodgers have another opportunity to capture a win in Game 5 with Clayton Kershaw taking the mound on Sunday. Hopefully, the analytics will interfere with the talent and skill the Dodgers possess and will need to avoid at times in order to defeat their foes.
If the Dodgers can win it all, then Game 4 will be a forgotten cliff note in this series. If they fail to capture the World Series title, Game 4 will stick out like a green hat with an orange bill designed in glitter. #mlb #dodgers #daveroberts #worldseies #tampabayrays #jocpederson #coreyseager ##randyarozarena