Dodgers can't tame Mets' bats in Game 2
Club drops twin bill as Haeger struggles on mound in nightcap
NEW YORK -- The Dodgers not only are playing like a last-place team, they are looking and sounding like one.
Tuesday morning on KABC Radio, general manager Ned Colletti's frustration boiled over in a rant, and that was before his team got swept by the Mets in a doubleheader, 4-0 and 10-5.
After dropping the twin bill, manager Joe Torre confirmed that the patchwork would continue on the pitching staff. He will ask 23-year-old right-hander John Ely, who has only three Triple-A games under his belt, to make his first Major League start in New York on Wednesday in place of disabled Opening Day starter Vicente Padilla.
"We just have to play better and pitch better," said Torre. "We need to win three or four in a row so we get that inner conceit back, that 'Dare you to beat me.'"
The doubleheader loss was the first to the Mets in New York since 1971. The Dodgers have lost their last three games, five of the last six and have dropped four games back in a division they led almost every day last season. They are 2-6 on a trip that ends Wednesday.
The opener was particularly bitter for the Dodgers. They lost Rafael Furcal to a left hamstring injury, stranded nine runners in their second consecutive shutout loss and wasted a quality start by Hiroki Kuroda, who in six innings allowed two runs on a bases-loaded wild pitch and a solo homer by Jason Bay. The Mets added a pair of runs off reliever Jon Link, who hadn't pitched in five days and was sent down afterward to make room for Ely.
In the nightcap, knuckleballer Charlie Haeger (0-3) struggled again with his command and lasted only four-plus innings while pitching on three days' rest. He was charged with five runs. Torre wouldn't even confirm when, or if, Haeger will make his next start.
"We're going to have to look at it," Torre said. "He puts lots of pressure on himself. I know the weather had a lot to do with it."
It was cold and windy at Citi Field, where the Dodgers rallied to tie and chase Mets starter Oliver Perez in the fourth inning, only for the Mets to score seven runs in the middle innings, four of them unearned following a crushing throwing error by Jamey Carroll, who was filling in at shortstop for the injured Furcal.
"We're sloppy at times, we walk too many people, we get behind and you can't expect too many good things to happen," said Torre.
The Dodgers played errorless ball in the first game, but Carroll's bounced throw with the infield drawn in was the team's 21st error this season, most in the league, accounting for 19 earned runs, nearly one per game.
Link, Ramon Troncoso and George Sherrill pitched in both games. Troncoso has appeared in a team-high 14 games, but Torre said he brought him into jams both times because the situation called for someone experienced in getting out of jams.
"When we feel he's made too many pitches, he won't be available, and he won't be tomorrow," he said. "In the time I've been here, he's pretty good at bouncing back."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.