Dodgers take over first place in NL West with narrow win over Padres

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Ross Stripling #68 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Chris Taylor reaches for a ground-ball single by San Diego Padres’ Austin Hedges during the fourth inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

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  • San Diego Padres starting pitcher Tyson Ross works against a Los Angeles Dodgers batter during the third inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Chase Utley #26 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is tagged out by Freddy Galvis #13 of the San Diego Padres as he tries to steal second base during the third inning of a baseball game at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Ross Stripling #68 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Ross Stripling watches a throw to a San Diego Padres batter during the first inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Tyson Ross #38 of the San Diego Padres pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers throws his helmet after striking out during the third inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Ross Stripling #68 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Dave Roberts #30 of the Los Angeles Dodgers argues a call with umpire Jordan Baker during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • The Dodgers’ Joc Pederson hits a double during the sixth inning to break up a no-hitter being thrown by the Padres’ Tyson Ross on Thursday in San Diego. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • The Dodgers’ Andrew Toles watches his RBI single during the seventh inning of the team’s baseball game against the San Diego Padres on Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • The Dodgers’ Andrew Toles hits an RBI single to break a scoreless tie and begin a three-run seventh inning in Thursday’s game against the Padres in San Diego. The Dodgers won 3-2. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • The Dodgers’ Chris Taylor runs home to score the first run of the game during the seventh inning Thursday night in San Diego. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • The Dodgers’ Justin Turner, center, gestures from the dugout toward teammate Andrew Toles after Toles’ RBI single during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • The Dodgers’ Matt Kemp follows through on an RBI single during the seventh inning of Thursday’s game in San Diego. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • Padres catcher Austin Hedges, left, tags out the Dodgers’ Kike’ Hernandez (14), who trying to score from second on an RBI single by Matt Kemp during the seventh inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Joc Pederson watches his RBI single during the seventh inning of the team’s baseball game against the San Diego Padres on Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp gestures after reaching third from first on an RBI single by Joc Pederson during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Wil Myers #4 of the San Diego Padres hits an RBI double during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Franmil Reyes #32 of the San Diego Padres scores ahead of the tag of Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers during the seventh inning of a baseball game at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • San Diego Padres shortstop Freddy Galvis, right, throws to first from his knees for the out on the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Justin Turner as Padres second baseman Jose Pirela, left, watches during the ninth inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • SAN DIEGO, CA – JULY 12: Freddy Galvis #13 of the San Diego Padres reacts after striking out during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PETCO Park on July 12, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers closing pitcher Kenley Jansen celebrates after defeating the San Diego Padres in a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. The Dodgers won 3-2. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers closing pitcher Kenley Jansen, right, celebrates with teammate catcher Yasmani Grandal after defeating the San Diego Padres in a baseball game Thursday, July 12, 2018, in San Diego. The Dodgers won 3-2. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

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SAN DIEGO — Ross Stripling is going to the All-Star Game. Tyson Ross is most assuredly not.

But it took a soft single by Andrew Toles in the seventh inning to separate the two and drive in the first run in a three-run seventh inning. That pushed the Dodgers past the San Diego Padres 3-2 on Thursday night – and into first place.

The win allowed the Dodgers to leap-frog the Arizona Diamondbacks (who lost earlier in the day) and move into first for only the second time this season. They took over first place despite going only 4-3 on a seven-game trip to Anaheim and San Diego. The Diamondbacks have lost nine of their last 13 games.

“It beats second place,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said when asked the significance of a division lead on July 12.

“Beats being in fourth place, too.”

That’s where the Dodgers were on May 16 when a six-game losing streak to the Cincinnati Reds and Miami Marlins dropped them 10 games under .500 (16-26).

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“It feels good,” said Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, who took over the NL lead in saves (26) Thursday. “Shoot, how we started in April who knew how the season was going to go for us?”

If you’ve been following this team, you kind of knew.

That 16-26 start was the first time they had been 10 games under .500 since June 2013. That season, the Dodgers won 60 of their next 88 games after hitting rock bottom and won the first of five consecutive division titles.

The Dodgers have done their part to follow a similar script. They have gone 35-16, the best record in the National League, since May 16.

“If we can be in first place three days from now at the All-Star break, that would be good,” Stripling said. “Obviously the Diamondbacks have put a good season together. We’ve been grinding along with them.”

It’s no coincidence that the Dodgers’ turnaround began when Justin Turner’s season did. Turner missed the first 40 games of the season with a fractured wrist. Though he hasn’t been as productive this year as last year when he made the All-Star team, he remains vital to the lineup.

That lineup has lost some of its vibrancy during this seven-game trip to Anaheim and San Diego. The Dodgers batted .190 with only three home runs and 24 runs scored on the trip and were held to three runs or fewer in five of the seven games.

Now, they might have to make do without Turner, albeit briefly, again. Roberts said Turner aggravated a groin or hamstring muscle while running to first on a ground-out as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning. Turner will not be in the lineup Friday and will be re-evaluated.

Ross was not a likely suspect to keep the lid on the Dodgers’ offense. In his previous two starts, the right-hander had a 19.29 ERA and opposing batters had a 1.427 OPS. But he held the Dodgers hitless into the sixth inning when a one-out double by Joc Pederson broke the spell.

Stripling had a rockier road. He didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning until the sixth after scattering six hits and a walk over the first five innings, stranding all seven runners on base, most notably striking Ross out with the bases loaded to end the fourth inning.

“It was just kind of a battle,” Stripling said. “I felt like they had a lot of good ABs. I definitely wasn’t missing a lot of barrels. … A little bit of luck on my part tonight. Might have built up some bad karma. There might be some bloopers in my future.”

The Dodgers finally broke through against Ross in the seventh inning when Chris Taylor lashed a one-out double down the left-field line. Toles dropped his single into left field to drive in the game’s first run and end Ross’ night.

Things went south for the Padres after that. The Dodgers batted around, scoring three times on four hits, a walk and two hit batters – one a classic, don’t-flinch, barely-there graze of Chase Utley’s left leg. Matt Kemp and Pederson joined Toles with RBI singles.

That was just enough when Wil Myers drove in two with a two-out double off Scott Alexander in the seventh. Dylan Floro and Jansen closed it out over the final two innings.

.@RossStripling talks with @alannarizzo about his 6-inning shutout in tonight’s series finale win vs. the #Padres. pic.twitter.com/ZhBte6sSch

— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) July 13, 2018

Coming through. #Dodgers pic.twitter.com/hOeHoUpsYC

— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) July 13, 2018

“We turned our season around, and we’re in first place. Now we just got to keep going.”@kenleyjansen74 spoke with @alannarizzo after recording his 26th save of the season in tonight’s 3-2 win against the #Padres. pic.twitter.com/QMYyJbcUdm

— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) July 13, 2018

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Dodgers fail to reward Walker Buehler in 2-1 loss to Rockies

  • Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Chase Utley #26 of the Los Angeles Dodgers fields a grounder hit by Charlie Blackmon #19 of the Colorado Rockies during the first inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Chase Utley #26 of the Los Angeles Dodgers fields a grounder hit by Charlie Blackmon #19 of the Colorado Rockies during the first inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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  • Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley fields a ball hit by Colorado Rockies’ Charlie Blackmon during the first inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. Blackmon was thrown out at first on the play. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley fields a ball hit by Colorado Rockies’ Charlie Blackmon during the first inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. Blackmon was thrown out at first on the play. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Joc Pederson #31 of the Los Angeles Dodgers flys out during the third inning of a game at against the Colorado Rockies  Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Joc Pederson #31 of the Los Angeles Dodgers flys out during the third inning of a game at against the Colorado Rockies Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, hits a solo home run as Colorado Rockies catcher Tony Wolters, right, watches along with home plate umpire Ryan Blakney during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, hits a solo home run as Colorado Rockies catcher Tony Wolters, right, watches along with home plate umpire Ryan Blakney during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, right, watches the ball go as he hits a solo home run as Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez watches during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, right, watches the ball go as he hits a solo home run as Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez watches during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth  inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers rounds second base after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth  inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers rounds second base after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, rounds third after hitting a solo home run as Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez, center, watches along with third baseman Nolan Arenado during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, rounds third after hitting a solo home run as Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez, center, watches along with third baseman Nolan Arenado during the fourth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, is congratulated by manager Dave Roberts after hitting a solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy, left, is congratulated by manager Dave Roberts after hitting a solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth  inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a solo homerun during the fourth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler winces as he throws out Colorado Rockies’ Trevor Story after being hit by the batted ball during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler winces as he throws out Colorado Rockies’ Trevor Story after being hit by the batted ball during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 looks on as Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers takes a knee after being hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 looks on as Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers takes a knee after being hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 and Yasmani Grandal #9 comfort  Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers  after he was  hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 and Yasmani Grandal #9 comfort Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers after he was hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13, Manager Dave Roberts, Justin Turner #10,  and Chase Utley #26 watch  Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers warm up  after he was  hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13, Manager Dave Roberts, Justin Turner #10, and Chase Utley #26 watch Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers warm up after he was hit by a line drive from Trevor Story #27 of the Colorado Rockies during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies starting pitcher German Marquez throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on after striking out during the sixth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies  at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on after striking out during the sixth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the first inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies  at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Walker Buehler #21 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the first inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, second from left, hits a solo home run off Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. Catcher Yasmani Grandal, right, and home plate umpire Ryan Blakney watch. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, second from left, hits a solo home run off Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. Catcher Yasmani Grandal, right, and home plate umpire Ryan Blakney watch. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, right, runs to first as he hits a solo home run as Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler watches during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, right, runs to first as he hits a solo home run as Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler watches during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers and umpire Ryan Blakney 6 look on as Gerardo Parra #8 of the Colorado Rockies celebrates his solo homerun during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers and umpire Ryan Blakney 6 look on as Gerardo Parra #8 of the Colorado Rockies celebrates his solo homerun during the fifth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, right, gestures as he scores after hitting a solo home run as Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal stands at the plate during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies’ Gerardo Parra, right, gestures as he scores after hitting a solo home run as Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal stands at the plate during the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Pedro Baez #52 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies  at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Pedro Baez #52 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Tony Wolters #14 of the Colorado Rockies runs to third as Chase Utley #26 is unable to catch a wild throw to second by Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Tony Wolters #14 of the Colorado Rockies runs to third as Chase Utley #26 is unable to catch a wild throw to second by Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Pedro Baez #52 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks off the field during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies  at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Pedro Baez #52 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks off the field during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Carlos Gonzalez #5 of the Colorado Rockies runs to first on an RBI single during the eighth inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers  at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Carlos Gonzalez #5 of the Colorado Rockies runs to first on an RBI single during the eighth inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Colorado Rockies’ Tony Wolters, right, is congratulated by Gerardo Parra after scoring on a single by Carlos Gonzalez during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Colorado Rockies’ Tony Wolters, right, is congratulated by Gerardo Parra after scoring on a single by Carlos Gonzalez during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Max Muncy #13 looks on after he was hit into a double play by Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Max Muncy #13 looks on after he was hit into a double play by Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks to the dugout after striking out during the ninth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Yasmani Grandal #9 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks to the dugout after striking out during the ninth inning of a game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp lies on the ground after being tagged out to end the game by Colorado Rockies first baseman Ian Desmond as he dove back to first following an overthrow on his single during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. The Rockies won 2-1. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp lies on the ground after being tagged out to end the game by Colorado Rockies first baseman Ian Desmond as he dove back to first following an overthrow on his single during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. The Rockies won 2-1. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Dodgers manager Dave Roberts discusses a game-ending play with officials after Dodgers’ Matt Kemp was tagged out by Colorado Rockies first baseman Ian Desmond as he dove back to first following an overthrow on his single during the ninth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. The Rockies won 2-1. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Dodgers manager Dave Roberts discusses a game-ending play with officials after Dodgers’ Matt Kemp was tagged out by Colorado Rockies first baseman Ian Desmond as he dove back to first following an overthrow on his single during the ninth inning of a baseball game Monday, May 21, 2018, in Los Angeles. The Rockies won 2-1. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • The Dodgers’ Matt Kemp walks off the field after being tagged out at first base to end the  game against the Colorado Rockies on Monday night at Dodger Stadium. The Rockies won 2-1.   (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    The Dodgers’ Matt Kemp walks off the field after being tagged out at first base to end the game against the Colorado Rockies on Monday night at Dodger Stadium. The Rockies won 2-1. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

  • LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21:  Matt Kemp #27 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks off the field after being tagged out at first base to end the  game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. The Colorado Rockies defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 2-1.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

    LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 21: Matt Kemp #27 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks off the field after being tagged out at first base to end the game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium on May 21, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. The Colorado Rockies defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 2-1. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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LOS ANGELES — The ball left Walker Buehler’s hand at 97 mph. Trevor Story swatted it back at 108 mph, packing all the optic ferocity of a ping-pong volley only, with more dangerous consequences. The ball tagged Buehler square in the left of his rib cage. The 23-year-old crumpled in a heap of pain, but not before he picked up the baseball and threw out Story.

That looked like the end of Buehler’s night for a moment Monday. The announced crowd of 42,805 at Dodger Stadium held its breath while the wispy right-hander collected his. Buehler needed a minute with a Dodgers athletic trainer, then threw a few warm-up pitches before staying in the game. He faced nine more batters, retiring eight, and left after seven brilliant innings. It was the longest start of his professional career.

Yet 90 pitches were not enough to guarantee Buehler a victory. His teammates simply made too many mistakes.

The Dodgers collected two hits against a pitcher with a 5.15 earned-run average. Chase Utley committed two errors at second base. Matt Kemp made a subtle but critical baserunning mistake with two outs in the ninth inning, ending a 2-1 loss to the Colorado Rockies.

“He’s done a phenomenal job, especially after getting drilled,” Kemp said of Buehler. “He came back and he battled. He’s been pitching well. Unfortunately, we couldn’t get him any runs to really support him, so we have to do a better job.”

Tied 1-1 in the eighth inning, the Rockies walked a delicate tightrope to score the tiebreaking run. Pedro Baez’s 3-and-2 fastball to Tony Wolters was inside by a hair. When Wolters took off for second base, catcher Yasmani Grandal’s throw was a bit high for Chase Utley’s vertical leap and landed in center field.

Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts believed the batter, Pat Valaika, interfered with Grandal.

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“It’s just unfortunate,” Roberts said, “because you look back at the (video), if we could review and look at it, and see that there was an excess backswing that did get in the way of Yasmani throwing the baseball to second base.”

Wolters went to third on the errant throw. A minute later, Baez (1-3) caught Wolters flat-footed leading off third base, but his throw to Justin Turner was a tick late. Baez struck out Pat Valaika and left to a rare round of cheers.

Left-hander Scott Alexander relieved Baez to face a left-handed hitter, Carlos Gonzalez. On his second pitch, Alexander induced a harmless-looking ground ball to Utley. But the veteran second baseman threw short of first base. Max Muncy, who earlier picked two throws out of the dirt to preserve Buehler’s perfect game in progress, flailed badly at Utley’s throw.

Gonzalez was safe, Wolters scored from third, and the Dodgers were down a run.

The Dodgers committed three errors in all. Utley was responsible for two.

Their most frustrating error was committed on the bases. With two outs in the ninth inning, Kemp hit a ground ball to the left side of the infield. Story, the Rockies’ shortstop, threw short of first base and Kemp briefly looked to his left as the ball eluded first baseman Ian Desmond.

Wolters, the Rockies’ catcher, was backing up the throw. He alertly tossed the ball to Desmond, who tagged out Kemp diving back to the bag. If Kemp had never looked to his left after running through the base, he could not be thrown out – a subtle movement, but one that cost the Dodgers their last chance at a victory.

“I wasn’t quite sure if I had turned to go to second base,” Kemp said. “Just trying to get back (to first) just to make sure. He (first base umpire Alfonso Marquez) said I went, tagged me out. It’s a mistake on my part. I take full blame for that.”

Muncy’s solo home run against Rockies pitcher German Marquez, his fifth of the season, gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning. Kemp had the Dodgers’ other hit against Marquez, a ground-rule double in the second inning.

Marquez was Buehler’s equal. He did not walk a batter and struck out six. By snapping a two-game losing streak, the Rockies (26-22) took over first place in the National League West by a half-game over the slumping Arizona Diamondbacks.

The Dodgers (20-27) stand 5½ games behind the new division leader.

Buehler’s command might have allowed a one-run lead to hold up. He was as efficient as he was effective, needing only 90 pitches to complete seven innings. He retired the game’s first 12 batters in order, carrying a perfect game into the fifth inning.

Then, Gerardo Parra fouled off four straight pitches before launching a Buehler fastball into the bleachers in left-center field. The home run tied the score 1-1.

Buehler allowed only one other hit, an infield single to the opposing pitcher, Marquez. He did not walk a batter and struck out six. Buehler had thrown more than 90 pitches before, but Roberts had no qualms about removing the rookie after seven innings.

“He takes a ball 108 miles off the bat to the ribs, and he gives you two more innings, and to ask him to start the eighth inning at 90-some pitches, that wasn’t too hard,” Roberts said.

Through six starts this season – the first six of his career – Buehler has a 2.38 earned-run average. When he struck out Nolan Arenado in the seventh inning, the Rockies’ All-Star third baseman clobbered the dugout floor with his lumber in frustration.

X-rays on Buehler’s ribs were negative. He said Story’s line drive reminded him of his days playing football, diving and expectorating the air from his lungs. But he took the hit and stayed in the game – a feat made more impressive by Buehler’s 175-pound frame.

His performance stood in sharp contrast to the mental and physical mistakes around him.

“Walker was outstanding,” Roberts said. “Willing himself to stay in there and giving us two innings was huge. A young player to have that much fight was very inspirational. Unfortunately, we couldn’t pick him up.”

This is how the #Dodgers lost. pic.twitter.com/5kSIgMLTbz

— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) May 22, 2018

Walker Buehler on his start and how his ribs feel after taking a 108mph line drive pic.twitter.com/NDMqLlkL3G

— Michael J. Duarte (@michaeljduarte) May 22, 2018

Dave Roberts comments on the #Dodgers final out, @buehlersdayoff‘s solid outing and determination to stay in the game. pic.twitter.com/p2IpGacf7e

— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) May 22, 2018

Bat drop. #Dodgers pic.twitter.com/xwn9WQIERP

— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) May 22, 2018

What can’t Chris Taylor do?!? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/zkkVlXkaOB

— MLB (@MLB) May 22, 2018

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Whicker: Dodgers had a right to party after 5th consecutive NL West title

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Charlie Culberson, left, has beer poured on him by Josh Fields in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Charlie Culberson, left, has beer poured on him by Josh Fields in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig celebrates in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig celebrates in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Ross Stripling has beer poured on him in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Ross Stripling has beer poured on him in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig, right, pours beer over the head of Augie Lopez, a friend of Puig, in the clubhouse after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig, right, pours beer over the head of Augie Lopez, a friend of Puig, in the clubhouse after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw has sparkling wine and beer poured onto him in the locker room after the Dodgers clinched their fifth consecutive NL West division title with a 4-2 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw has sparkling wine and beer poured onto him in the locker room after the Dodgers clinched their fifth consecutive NL West division title with a 4-2 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Kenta Maeda, of Japan, sprays beer in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Kenta Maeda, of Japan, sprays beer in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Logan Forsythe sprays sparkling wine in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Logan Forsythe sprays sparkling wine in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez celebrates in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez celebrates in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig has sparkling wine poured onto him in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Los Angeles Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig has sparkling wine poured onto him in the locker room after the Dodgers won the NL West title with a 4-2 defeat of the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

  • The Dodgers celebrate after they defeated the San Francisco Giants, 4-2, to win their fifth consecutive NL West title on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    The Dodgers celebrate after they defeated the San Francisco Giants, 4-2, to win their fifth consecutive NL West title on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

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LOS ANGELES — No other sport talks so much about the big one, then celebrates so hard over the little one.

Kenley Jansen got Ryder Jones for the final out of the contested regular season on Friday night, and here came the champagne, the beer cooler, the protective goggles, and a whole Havana boatload of cigars.

The wives and children came into the inner sanctum, the clubhouse floor began to flood, and the whole immeasurable masthead of Dodgers personnel came down to celebrate the conquest of four other baseball teams.

The NHL and NBA and NFL don’t do that. You win a series and you shake hands and gulp for air and then you do it again. A lot of hockey and basketball teams don’t even know they’ve made the playoffs.

Baseball is different. Yeah, it seems a little much. But it’s harmless if you avoid the broken glass, or if you’re not pitching coach Rick Honeycutt, standing by a doorway as Clayton Kershaw and Kenley Jansen approach with full bottles and fiendish smiles.

They empted it all on Honeycutt. “You’re giving me a heart attack!” Honeycutt cried. But he pitched in 30 postseason games and he has been running the Dodgers’ staff since 2006. He knows the sticky smoke of victory.

“This one is special,” Manager Dave Roberts said, behind dark glasses.

All sports have unique demands. Baseball is a long-playing mind game. There are 162 games in 180 days. You can spend literally half your life in a ballpark. In hockey you have team dinner on off days and in football you have quarterbacks buying steak dinners for their carnivorous linemen. Baseball players rarely get those moments of release, not until their siege of a season is lifted.

The Dodgers have won five consecutive division titles. The last team to do it was Philadelphia, from 2007 through 2011. Chase Utley was on all five of those teams, on three of these.

“It’s no easy feat,” Utley said. “You have to have the players, and some luck, too. Those Phillies teams had a lot of talent,  but you need more than that. Since I’ve been here, everybody has bought into what we’re doing.”

The Phillies won the World Series in 2008 and won the NLCS in 2009, but squandered home-field advantages in losses to San Francisco and St. Louis in 2010 and 2011. The Dodgers began this streak in 2013. Only six of those players are still here, and the streak has required two managers and two general managers.

It’s a far different team, maybe even different since they ran aground with 15 losses in 16 games, and woke up like stockbrokers in late 2008, half their investment gone.

“I definitely believe that will be good for us,” Utley said. “Nobody enjoys losing games. But we were going so great for such a long time. It wasn’t realistic.”

“Ten games into that mini-slide, I remember that we were talking about how this could be a really good thing for us,” General Manager Andrew Friedman said. “Then when it lasted a little big longer, we said, all right, that’s enough.

“But the work ethic never wavered. This group hadn’t had any adversity. So this could set us up well for October.”

Through 162 games, unexpected pieces fall from the sky. Sometimes they’re big, vicious boulders. For the Dodgers they were mostly fruit baskets and ambrosia. Late-inning rallies, three months between lost series.

Cody Bellinger was the main gift from above, and he was the appropriate cause of this 98th win, driving an unfortunate pitch from Jeff Samardzija deep into the bedlam of the right-field pavilion.

It was Bellinger’s 39th home run and broke a National League rookie record, and there have been some powerful rookies. Bellinger didn’t even start the season in L.A. What was Friedman’s realistic expectation in the spring?

He laughed. “I thought he’d be a very good X factor for us in the second half of the season if the stars aligned,” Friedman said. “I didn’t know the stars would align in April.”

Roberts also said this was special because of the muscle in the division, because Arizona is definitely headed for the playoffs and Colorado probably is. That’s 38 games against tough lineups, against MVP candidates like Paul Goldschmidt, Charlie Blackmon and Nolan Arenado.

“It was almost like the old American League East,” Honeycutt said. “We had some tough games. But these guys have been warriors.”

The Atlanta Braves finished first in 14 consecutive full seasons, beginning in 1991, and they partied hard every time. Waking up the morning after, with the room moving? That’s adversity, too.

The Dodgers just hope their sleepless nights stretch into November.

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