Andrew Heaney looked first at the towering driveway in disgust, then at the Dodgers’ dugout in disbelief.
For the fourth time Monday night, the Dodgers left-hander had given up a home run, his recent struggles with long ball turning into a total disaster in a 7-4 loss to the San Francisco Giants.
On Monday, Heaney, 31, had largely found success despite his troubling home run habit. He had a 2.12 ERA in 46 2/3 innings. He had 70 strikeouts and a best 13.5 strikeouts per nine innings. And he was starting to look confident with a fastball slider arsenal, apparently finally finding a place to pair with his deceptive four-seamer.
“That’s about the 95th percentile [of what we were expecting]manager Dave Roberts said last week of Heaney, who joined the Dodgers on a one-year deal this offseason in hopes of relaunching his career. “Lots of credit for the whole organization but Andrew is obviously getting the best of it. He’s doing fantastic.”
The only problem had been the home runs. After giving up just one of his first seven starts, Heaney had allowed six of his previous three.
On Monday it got a lot worse.
After two scoreless innings, Heaney made a few mistakes with his fastball in the third.
In a 0-and-1 count against Lewis Brinson, he dropped a four down the middle that was hammered for a two-run homer, leveling the score after Freddie Freeman’s own two-run blast at the end of the first.
Two batters later, Heaney missed the plate again and threw another center cut error that JD Davis crushed for a go-ahead solo blast.
The fourth inning wasn’t much better.
Thairo Estrada led with another solo homer from the frame, this time with a changeup from the plate.
Then Heaney was penalized again for a bad fastball, leaving a low over the plate for David Villar to hammer into right field.
Trailing 6-2 after the Giants’ barrage, the Dodgers were unable to stage a comeback.
Trea Turner was caught stealing to end the third inning after popping off second base at the end of his slide. The Dodgers got a run in the fourth on a double from Joey Gallo but were stranded with a pair.
Then, in the fifth, they made their costliest mistake when Austin Barnes was kicked out on home plate after an overly aggressive send by third base coach Dino Ebel.
Barnes and Brinson traded a pair of solo homers late on, leaving the Dodgers’ magic number to win the NL West by eight after the San Diego Padres lost earlier in the day.
Heaney’s performance generated the most conversation after the game.
Heaney looks likely to be pushed out of the postseason rotation — a possible reality he said last week he understood.
“It’s one of those things, like when I miss a playoff [rotation] I’m not going to sleep at all because of the guys in front of me,” he said. “These guys are evil.”
Even outside of the bullpen, Heaney could offer value.
To be counted in October, however, he must first fix his home run problem.
If they weren’t already, the consequences of an omission became clear on Monday.
Blake Treinen plays a scoreless inning
Treinen threw another scoreless inning in his second game back from the injured list.
Despite the right-hander walking a batter and needing 23 pitches to get through a struggling seventh inning, Treinen still looked largely sharp, scoring a strikeout with his slider and hitting 96 to 97 mph with his slider consistently.
Dave Roberts said Gavin Lux will not play this series as he continues to have a lower neck/upper back injury that required a cortisone shot over the weekend. … Brusdar Graterol (elbow) approaches dropping a hill. Tony Gonsolin (forearm) has yet to extend his catching game before he will be ready at this point. … Ryan Pepiot was optioned ahead of Monday’s game and replaced on the squad by reliever Justin Brühl. … Roberts said he’s had positive reports about rehab resident Tommy Kahnle, who is scheduled to make his next outing with Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday.
https://www.latimes.com/sports/dodgers/story/2022-09-05/andrew-heaney-struggles-dodgers-giants-recap-mlb Andrew Heaney gives up four home runs in Dodgers’ loss to Giants