LOS ANGELES -- From June 7-Aug. 19, the Dodgers went 52-9 and appeared they might be poised to break the Major League wins record.
In the last 11 days, the Dodgers have lost more times than they did during that 61-game stretch, with the latest setback a 3-1 loss to the D-backs Tuesday. The National League West leaders have lost five straight games and 10 of their their last 11, shrinking their division advantage from a franchise-best 21 games on Aug. 25 to 11 1/2.
"I'm glad it's happening," said catcher Yasmani Grandal. "Might as well happen now instead of the playoffs. … This is just another stepping stone. I'm glad somebody else is trying to challenge us, especially from our own division."
Tuesday's defeat to the D-backs was the Dodgers' sixth by at least two runs in their last 10 games. Two crucial moments helped dictate the outcome. After Cody Bellinger hit a leadoff single in the seventh, the rookie tried to swipe second and was initially called safe, but a D-backs challenge overturned the call.
In the ninth, Chris Taylor hit a leadoff single but was thrown out at second trying to advance on Curtis Granderson's flyout to the center-field warning track.
"I guess you could call it an aggressive mistake," Taylor said. "If I could go back and do it again, I would stay on first.
"It's just an instinctual, heat of the moment play. I thought it was deep enough, thought I was able to get there. [A.J. Pollock] made a good throw, and I was out."
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts expressed a different tone. Roberts said he would bet on Taylor being safe more times than not and doesn't mind the aggressiveness the team has shown.
Being aggressive is what helped them get to their Major League-best 92-46 record.
"Just because things aren't going right for us, I don't think we should play timid," said third baseman Justin Turner. "[Bellinger] got a great jump earlier in the game, and it was a banger at second. That's just the way things are going right now. Just on the wrong end of a few things."
Joshua Thornton is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.