Josh Beckett, Los Angeles Dodgers continue losing ways

By Matthew Muench
Gary A. Vasquez-USA Today Sports

Josh Beckett is still winless, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are still in trouble.

Hoping to keep momentum going after winning two straight against the Miami Marlins, the Dodgers moved back to the loss column when the Washington Nationals topped them 6-2 in the first game of their three-game series on Monday night.

It didn’t take long for the Nationals to jump all over Beckett. The former All-Star surrendered four runs and was chased after just three innings pitched. He is now 0-5 in eight starts this season, and his ERA (5.19) continues to balloon every time he hits the hill.

So this is why the Boston Red Sox wanted to dump him last season.

He has allowed three or more runs during his last five starts, and has only pitched past the fifth inning once during that span. That’s a troubling sign for a Dodgers starting rotation that has battled through injuries and turmoil all season. You have to wonder how long Don Mattingly will continue to put his trust in Beckett, as he definitely does not look like a formidable starting pitcher right now.

When Zack Greinke and Ted Lilly return from injuries, does Mattingly move Beckett to bullpen? Probably not, but it is something to ponder.

The blame for Monday’s loss isn’t all on Beckett’s shoulders. L.A.’s fielding was just as bad. Adrian Gonzalez made an uncharacteristic error in the third inning that led to three runs. Then in the fifth, Dee Gordon misplayed an infield single, and relief pitcher Javy Guerra threw a possible inning-ending double-play ball into center field. Those two crucial mistakes led to two runs to give the Nationals a 6-0 lead en route to the win.

Like Beckett, the Dodgers offense looked bad like they have all season. They got on base plenty of times, but scored just two runs off Nationals starter Jordan Zimmerman. They reached base in seven of nine innings but finished the game going 1-for11 with runners in scoring position.

It was a sight that was not new to Dodgers fans this season, much like the sight of Beckett failing and the Dodgers losing — again.

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