DENVER | Kenta Maeda didn’t come close to finishing what he started. He still had a pretty big say in the final outcome.
Joc Pederson had three hits and three RBIs, Matt Beaty doubled twice and drove in two, and Maeda helped out offensively as the Los Angeles Dodgers rallied past the Colorado Rockies 10-5 Sunday to split their four-game series.
Maeda pitched into the fifth but didn’t figure in the decision. He had a hand in the Dodgers’ first two runs, though, singling and scoring in the third and laying down a sacrifice bunt that helped bring Kiké Hernandez home in the fifth.
“In my first outing, I hit a home run, but I’ve settled down and now I’m going for the knocks,” Maeda said through an interpreter, referencing the solo homer he hit in his 2016 major league debut against San Diego.
The Dodgers finished 3-4 on their seven game road trip.
Manager Dave Roberts made the decision to pull Maeda, a right-hander, with two on and one out in the fifth because the top two spots in the Rockies batting order, left-handed Charlie Blackmon and David Dahl, were due up. He also was concerned because Maeda had been running the bases so much earlier in the game.
“There were a couple of innings stressful that he was kind of trying to get through, he was running the bases a lot and the pitch count was starting to get up there,” Roberts said. “No starter wants to come out and I think that’s a great thing. But for me, I’ve still got to make a decision and you just don’t know how the outcome is going to turn out.”
Dylan Floro (3-2) got two outs to pick up the win and Julio Urias helped keep the Rockies in check with three scoreless innings in relief.
Dahl, a first-time NL All-Star who learned of his selection just before the game, homered for the Rockies off Zac Rosscup, who had relieved Maeda.
“This year, he really came with an intent from the first day of spring training to prove he can be a force as an everyday player,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. “Given the opportunity with how we set our roster, so very proud of him in that regard. Here he is, opening day starter for us in the outfield, having one quick stint on the DL early in the year but since then he’s been an All-Star. Well deserved.”
Shortstop Trevor Story and right fielder Blackmon also were selected. Blackmon connected for his 20th homer of the season — a solo shot — with two outs in the ninth.
Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado and the Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger were selected in fan balloting announced earlier. In addition, Dodgers pitchers Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler and Hyun-Jin Ryu were selected for the NL squad.
“I’m very excited for the three pitchers,” said Roberts, who is managing the NL team. “These guys had great halves. They are our top three pitchers and it’s great for baseball. It’s going to be fun to get them into the game.”
Los Angeles vaulted back in front with a six-run burst in the sixth, a rally that pinch-hitter Justin Turner sparked when he was hit by a pitch by reliever Chad Bettis (1-4) with the bases loaded. Pederson followed with a two-run single, Beaty had an RBI double, and Max Muncy an RBI single along with Bellinger’s run-scoring fielder’s choice as the Dodgers moved in front 9-4.
“It was nice to get a big inning for us, to come out of here with a split and lose no ground to those guys, who gave it all they had,” Roberts said of the second-place Rockies. “It was a good thing for us.”
Bellinger singled in the Dodgers’ eighth to drive in a second run.
Trailing 3-0 going into their half of the fifth, the Rockies came back to take a 4-3 lead. With two on and one out, Maeda was relieved by Zac Rosscup, who gave up an infield RBI single to Blackmon before Dahl connected for a three-run home run, his 12th of the season.
Rockies starter Chi Chi Gonzalez went four-plus innings and allowed three runs on five hits.
The young umpire caught in the middle of a brawl at a youth league baseball game got a big league show of support. Josh Cordova, 13, along with his family, was invited to the game by major league umpire Chris Guccione, a native of Salida, Colorado. Cordova delivered the lineup cards during the pregame huddle at home plate with the umpire crew and the teams’ managers.
Dodgers: INF David Freese practiced against live pitching this weekend and is nearing a return from the 10-day injured list (left hamstring strain). Manager Dave Roberts said he anticipates Freese could be activated sometime this week.
Rockies: SS Trevor Story is finishing up a weekend rehab assignment with Triple-A Albuquerque. Barring any setbacks, Story is expected to be reinstated sometime this week from the 10-day injured list (thumb).
Dodgers: Following an off day, RHP Ross Stripling (3-2, 3.08 ERA) is slated to pitch a series opener Tuesday night against Arizona, his second consecutive start against the Diamondbacks.
Rockies: After a day off, RHP German Marquez (8-3, 4.29 ERA) takes the mound for the opener of a two-game interleague series against the Houston Astros.