After disappointing 2-1 loss yesterday at Dodger Stadium against their hated rivals the San Francisco Giants, the Dodgers looked to regroup and get aboard their first place winning ways.
On Wednesday Giants Tim Lincecum looked to do battle not against his nemesis Clayton Kershaw, but against Chad Billingsley. Billingsley looked sharp early, until he faced rival pitcher Tim Lincecum who hit a single to help his own cause that scored Joaquin Arias.
Buster Posey RBI single in the third inning extended the Giants’ lead to 2-0.
It wasn’t long until the Dodgers got on board thanks to Bobby Abreu who singled to advance Andre Either to third base. Later Juan Uribe reached out on an infield single that scored Either. In that same inning Tony Gywnn Jr pinched hit for Billingsley, who tripled to right, Abreu, Uribe, and AJ Ellis all score to help the Dodgers take the lead 4-2.
The Dodgers offense didn’t quit in the sixth inning, catcher AJ Ellis tripled to deep center to get on base in scoring position. Scott Van Slyke (son of Pirate great Andy Van Slyke) came in to pinch hit for pitcher Jamey Wright. Van Slyke hit a huge single that scored Ellis.
In the eight inning Uribe showed up again as he doubled to deep center, and with a man on base, James Loney hit an RBI single to left that scored Uribe. With the bases loaded Giants manager Bruce Bouchy decided a change was necessary and Steve Edlefsen relieved Clay Hensley. A very smart move because with Matt Kemp at the plate, Kemp grounded out to shortstop which caused Adam Kennedy to be called out to end the inning.
Kensley Jansen came in to close out the ninth inning, and after walking Gregor Blanco, settled down and for the final out to strike out catcher Buster Posey swinging.
Chad Billingsley lasted just four innings, allowing two runs and seven hits while striking out five and walking four.
Tim Lincecum gave up four runs, eight hits in five innings with eight strike outs.
Dodger reliever Jamey Wright pitched two superb innings and with two strike outs to pick up the victory.
*Dodgers OF/1B Juan Rivera was placed on the 15-day DL due to a significant strained left hamstring, Dodger manager Don Mattingly said earlier he expected Rivera to be out more than two weeks.
After a 3-3 road trip coming off a terrible outing on Sunday in Houston, the Dodgers look to return to familiar territory, Dodger Stadium where they have done their best work.
Chris Capuano had the responsibility of keeping the winning streak alive against the young Atlanta Braves’ Jair Jurrjens.
Jurrjens allowing Dee Gordon to hit a single to center, which later allowed him the opportunity to steal second base, was a not a great way to start off the game. Mark Ellis flew out to right field, Matt Kemp was walked. Things didn’t get any better for Jurrjens as the reliable Andre Either hit a big single to center, that caused Gordon to score.
Capuano at the top of the second inning gave up an unnecessary home run to David Ross to tie the game at 1-1. Capuano would settle down and concentrate to get out of the inning unscaved, however the Dodgers would need run support and fast. James Loney who seems to be getting in stride hit a timely double into center, and Juan Uribe hit a single that caused Loney to score. The Dodgers weren’t done as A.J. Ellis singled to center, Uribe scores as they continue to pile on runs.
The reign of runs didn’t stop in the bottom of the fourth inning Loney has another timely hit, Uribe singles to advance Loney to third base. Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez had seen enough and called in reliever Livan Hernandez for Jurrjens. Which didn’t prove to be any better, as Gordon hit a sacrifice fly to left, Uribe scored to give the Dodgers the huge 5-1 lead.
In the top of the eight inning, Josh Lindblom relieves Capuano who pitched seven strong innings on six hits, and five strikeouts. The first batter Lindblom faced was slugger Dan Uggla who hit a home run deep to right field that cut the lead 5-2. But the Dodgers would soon answer back as Uribe would hit a huge bases loaded single, sending Kemp and Either in to score. Uribe tied a career high with four hits and drove in three runs on the night for the Dodgers, a magnificent night by the third baseman.
Dodger reliever Scott Elbert came in to close out the game and pick up the victory as the Dodgers took the first game of this three game series 7-2.
Juan Uribe talked about his stellar play against the Braves Monday night “I was hurt last year, but I wanted to play and show the guys I could play and help the team. For me, it was just important for us to win the game.”
Chris Capuano picks up the victory to go 2-0 on the season and spoke about his performance “It was a battle, but luckily I had a pretty decent cutter working, and that helped me out in that last situation. I was struggling with my command early, and I wasn’t able to get those calls on the inside of the plate to right-handers.”
Jurrjens pitched terribly, gave up five runs and nine hits in three-plus innings of work. Surprisingly this was the first time Jurrjens failed to record a strikeout in 42 starts.
The Braves all star third baseman Chipper Jones sat out of the game nursing a sore left knee, on the eve of his 40th birthday, but is expected to be in the line up on Tuesday. He announced earlier last month that this will be his final season with the Atlanta Braves. He’s had an outstanding career that spans 19 season, that included him being the 1999 NL MVP.
The Los Angeles Dodgers look to continue their winning ways as one of the hottest team in Major League Baseball, as ace Clayton Kershaw looks for his first win against the Houston Astros starter Kyle Weiland.
Kershaw started out solid as usual, allowing no runs as he continued to focus on the mission at hand, a victory. However Weiland had his work cut out for him, starting with giving up a solo home run to an offensively awaken James Loney.
Weiland continued to hold his own against Kershaw, even striking out Kershaw at an at bat. Weiland on misguided bunt play, allowed Dee Gordon to get on to first base in the top of the sixth inning. Then Gordon took off for second, but thanks to bad guided throw that resulted in an error, allowed the speedy Gordon to make it to third base. Can we say deja vu all over again, as slugger Matt Kemp bashes another two run home run as he did yesterday.
Kershaw continued to dominate, the same could not be said for Weiland as he was replaced in the eight inning by Rhiner Cruz. Cruz immediately walks AJ Ellis, Kershaw bunted into a double play that got Ellis out at second base. After walking Adam Kennedy, Cruz was relieved by David Carpenter who loaded the bases with a Matt Kemp walk. And of course Andre Either cashes in on single to right, allowing Gordon and Kennedy to score 5-0.
The Dodgers bullpen has had trouble throughout the young season, showed it struggles, as Mike MacDougal relieved Kershaw, only to give up a center field single to Justin Maxwell. After that walking both Jordan Schafer and Jose Altuve, which made Dodger manager to make a quick personnel change bring in Kensley Jensen to finish out the inning. By then the damage had been done after walking J Martinez, Maxwell scored to avoid the shutout. Jensen was able to get out of the inning with out any further runs to set up Jamey Wright to close out the ninth inning and grab the save and victory for the Dodgers 5-1. Kershaw finally gets his first victory of the season, as Kemp has homered in three consecutive games.
Kershaw spoke about his great outing “I didn’t have great fastball command tonight. I struggled with my fastball. I didn’t exactly know where it was going all the time. I was fortunate to get some outs here and there. It was a battle tonight.”
Kershaw struck out nine and allowed three hits in seven scoreless innings for his first win this season after experiencing no decisions in his first three games of this year.
Weiland pitched seven innings, struck out six with two home runs. Weiland talked about that monster home run by Matt Kemp “I did the exact opposite of what we wanted, coming out there in that situation, you can’t give him anything close to hit. I dropped my elbow a little bit there and the pitch just spun up there.”
A new city, a new series, and a great way for the Los Angeles Dodgers to get back to their winning ways, in a weekend series with the mediocre Houston Astros.
Coming off a great win against the Milwaukee Brewers, the Dodgers send Ted Lilly to continue their winning ways against Astros’ pitcher J.A. Happ.
Happ started out very shaky, as Justin Sellers singled to right, however M Ellis flew out to left for the first out. Matt Kemp who has been playing out of this world since the season began, connected on a deep two run home run to give the Dodgers the 2-0 advantage. In the third inning, the Dodgers continued their offensive slaughter as Ellis singled to center and after walking Kemp, Happ was able to get Juan Rivera to ground out into a double play which got Kemp out at second. Ellis moved to third base, Andre Either smashed a single to center, allowing Ellis to score.
Lilly was magnificent on the mound, throwing a variety of pitches, that the Astros line up simply could not get into rhythm offensively. Until the bottom of the fourth inning with two outs, Brian Bogusevic singled to center and later stole second. Chris Snyder singled to left, that caused Bogusevic to score, ironically on the third out Lilly got Happ to fly out to third to end the inning.
Lilly remained focused, allowing no more runs, and was replaced in the eight inning by Kensley Jensen. Jensen pitched a solid inning which set the stage for closer Javy Guerra who held on for his seventh save to capture the victory as the Dodgers defeat the Astros 3-1 at Minute Maid Park.
Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp who not only hit a home run, but had three hits and two RBI’s talked about his team’s success “We’re having fun, I think as a team we’re having fun. I’m just trying to do whatever it takes to help us win games now.”
Lilly had another solid outing as he allowed four hits, and one run in six innings of work got his second victory of the season. Happ allowed eight hits and three runs while walking four in six innings.
Dodgers manager Don Mattingly spoke very highly of the new bash brothers Either and Kemp “We talk about Matt because he’s hitting way up there, but Andre’s right there driving in runs with him every day. Those two together have been pretty special.”
Wednesday, was the night many waited for including the family of Clayton Kershaw, the presentation of his 2011 Cy Young Award. In attendance were also Clayton Kershaw’s wife Ellen and family, along with former Cy Young winner Fernando Valenzuela. Valenzuela received a much deserved standing ovation from the Dodger fan crowd, as did Kershaw when he raised his award up in celebratory fashion.
The 27 year old right hander Chad Billingsley was lights out the first two innings, Pirates pitcher Erik Bedard also kept the Dodgers scoreless.
In the third inning Billingsley seemed to lose some focus as he gave up a home run to Clint Barmes out in left field for the Pirates to take the early 1-0. Billinsley seem to maintain his composer enough to get out of the inning without any further damage.
Bedard walked M Ellis, allowed Matt Kemp to single to second causing Ellis to move to second base. Juan Rivera steps up and hits a big single causing Ellis to score and tie the game 1-1.
The Dodgers continue to give Billingsley more run support as Kemp singled to left center off Bedard in the sixth inning. Rivera reached on an infield single moving Kemp to second. Andre Either slugged an RBI single, causing Kemp to score and capture the lead 2-1.
In the eight inning Tony Watson came in relieve, but quickly gave a double to Gordon. Watson was replaced by Meek who didn’t couldn’t be worse as he gave up hits to Rivera and Tony Gywnn Jr to extend the Dodger lead 4-1.
Guerra relieved Jensen in the ninth to record the save and secure the victory for the Dodgers. Billingsley struck out five, no walks and one home run to remain perfect at 2-0.
Andre Either spoke about the solid performance of his pitcher, “He really trusts his stuff. He’s pounding the strike zone and making guys miss. And when he gets in a jam, he figures out a way to get out of it — either with a big double-play ball or by forcing contact with a guy and coming out on top. It’s nice to play defense behind him because there’s not too many balls hit to you.”
Bedard gave up two runs and eight hits in five-plus innings and only struck out three in the loss. He has yet to win a game this season, after suffering his first loss at the hands of Roy Halladay.
*50 years ago the Dodgers played their very first night game in Dodger Stadium. Jim Gilliam hit the first home run on April 11, 1962.
Tuesday marked the golden anniversary of historic Dodger Stadium, on April 10, 1962 the Los Angeles Dodgers played their very first game in Chavez Ravine. Now just 50 years later, with new ownership, and a new attitude the Dodgers (3-1) looked to continue upward against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Dodgers began the 50th Anniversary celebration of Dodger Stadium with various tributes to the stadium while welcoming back several members of their 1962 roster, including Maury Wills and Tommy Davis. Former Dodger Manager Tommy Lasorda was on hand, however absent for all of the festivities was Hall Of Fame Dodger Broadcaster Vin Scully, who was at home recovering from flu like symptoms. And new Dodgers co-owner Magic Johnson, who had a scheduled engagement in New York, where he promoted the stage play Magic vs. Bird.
With Dee Gordon already on base, MVP hopeful Matt Kemp attacked the plate, as he connected only to ground out, yet allowing Gordon to score that put the Dodgers up 1-0 int he first inning.
Kershaw continued in Cy Young stride as he continued to punish the Pirates inning after inning reminding everyone why he was is the Cy Young award winner. Until the seventh, when things seemed to break open for the Pirates, the Dodger failed to score runs in the previous innings. Pirates slugger Alex Priestly reached on a single, where he stayed at first base. Then outfielder Andrew McCutchen hit a huge single to left advancing Priestly to second. Matt Hague judged Kershaw’s pitch well yet grounded out to short, causing Priestly to score and moving McCutchen to third. Kershaw was able to get out of the inning, with no additional runs allowed.
In the eight inning Kenley Jensen came in to relieve Clayton Kershaw who still had a much better & healthy outing than he did in San Diego battling stomach flu. Kershaw left the eight where he allowed four hits and struck out seven, and one earned run.
For the Pirates, Jason Grilli replaced Juan Cruz, which seemed to be an impressive upgrade as got A.J. Ellis to watch as he struck him out, then cause Kemp to swing and strike out. Next up was the birthday boy Andre Either, who had to do something epic on this with it being the 50th anniversary and his 30th birthday. Either stepped up and hit a huge home run, that caused the Dodger fans to erupt in relieve and joy as the Dodgers took the commanding 2-1 lead.
Javy Guerra came in the ninth and secured the save, for the Dodgers to win in dramatic fashion at their home opener. The Dodger being 4-1 are the hottest team in baseball, and smiles were all around the Dodger locker room. Either spoke about giving us Dodger fans the greatest gift on his birthday “I guess that’s a good birthday present for this stadium, too.”
Former Dodger and current Pirates catcher Rod Barajas discussed the tough loss and facing Kershaw “we’ve had some tough matchups: Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, and then we get Clayton Kershaw, but we’re competing day in and day out. So no matter who’s on the mound, we’re going to battle. It was tough today.”
Jansen gets the win, Kershaw has a no decision, as Jason Grilli gets the loss for the Pirates.
LOS ANGELES – The NL West rivalry heated up on Tuesday night as Diamondbacks slugger Gerardo Parra hit a home run, then as he crossed home plate began to taunt many in the Dodger dugout which allowed Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw to get into a heated war of words between Parra and former Dodger, now Arizona Diamondbacks manager Kurt Gibson.
Many wonder what Wednesday night would bring at Dodger Stadium since Kershaw was the starting pitcher going for his 19th win against the now hated Diamondbacks. Would he retaliate or would he keep his cool and focus not only on the win, and take the opportunity to make an even stronger case for NL Cy Young award?
Kershaw came out on fire in the first inning and his teammates Tony Gwynn Jr who craftily slid home safe to score the first run, thanks to a Matt Kemp single. The Dodgers weren’t finished as Jerry Sands drove in another run, hitting a single in shallow center giving the Dodgers a 2-0 lead. Kershaw was magnificent only allowing one hit until the sixth inning.
Diamondbacks starting pitcher Daniel Hudson showed Los Angeles no mercy as he shut down the Dodgers just allowing two runs through seven innings of work.
In the sixth inning, as Parra batting at the plate, Kershaw threw the pitch which seemed to lose control somewhat, actually hit Parra, and home base umpire Bill Welke immediately ejected him.
Kershaw singled out Welke about the same time as Dodgers manager Don Mattingly sprinted out on the field to seek Welke out and ask him why the sudden reaction. Kershaw attempted to plead his ephemeral case that he pitched inside and not intentionally hit Parra. When Kershaw hit the showers, the Dodgers seemed even more determine to get the win not only for themselves but their fallen comrade.
In the eight inning, Dodger hitter Aaron Miles ended the drought as his RBI single gave the Dodgers more run insurance in their attempt to close out the game in the ninth inning.
Dodger closer Kenley Jansen gave up a one run single to Miguel Montero, cut into the Dodger lead 3-2. The next Arizona batter would not be so lucky as Jansen focused and struck out center fielder Chris Young on a breaking ball to end the game.
Dodgers held on to get the victory 3-2. Even though Kershaw was ejected, he got the win, which brings him to an impressive (19-5) record.
After the game Kershaw spoke about his what seem to be unjust ejection “Bill [Welke] is back there just trying to make sure that everything is OK. I understand that he has a job to do, but at the same time, just pay attention to the game and understand what’s going on.”
Manager Don Mattingly who was also ejected for arguing the call also chimed in on Kershaw’s ejection and how his pitching staff pulled it together “The momentum could change there with Clayton coming out of a game he was pretty much dominating. But Josh came in and really did a lot more of the same.”
According to Arizona pitcher Daniel Hudson the Diamondbacks were contacted by MLB and given a swift warning before Wednesday nights game. No one in Dodger organization could confirm if they receive that same MLB warning.