Monday, April 13, 2015

Dodgers hold off D-backs' ninth-inning charge

Dodgers starter Zack Greinke pitched seven shutout innings and his offense, led by Joc Pederson and Alex Guerrero, racked up 16 hits to power Los Angeles to a 7-4 victory against the D-backs on Sunday and avoid the three-game sweep at Chase Field.
Pederson and Guerrero had three hits each -- including their first big league home runs -- and both finished a triple shy of a cycle. Dodgers right fielderYasiel Puig also hit a home run, his first of the season, in the victory.
"We played so well today. I probably didn't need to do that well," said Greinke.
Jordan Pacheco drove in Arizona's first run with a two-out single in the ninth to end the Dodgers' bid for a shutout. Center fielder A.J. Pollock followed with a bases-clearing double to cut the Los Angeles lead to 7-4.
D-backs starter Josh Collmenter struggled with his command for the second consecutive start and was charged with three runs on nine hits in five innings for the loss. Of Collmenter's 74 pitches, 48 were strikes.
"He didn't throw that badly, we were just in a situation where Greinke was so good, and we knew we were not going to get many shots at him," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "I wanted to use a pinch-hitter. He could have kept going."
As for Greinke, he allowed only five hits and struck out seven in the victory. Every starter but Greinke had at least one hit.
Cuban connection: The Dodgers started three Cuban-born players in the game and two of them factored in their second run, as Yasmani Grandalsingled with one out in the fourth and Guerrero singled him home for his first MLB RBI. Puig joined the fun with his homer leading off the fifth inning. Guerrero doubled home another run in the seventh and homered in the ninth.More >
Family connections: D-backs pitcher A.J. Schugel was told of his big league promotion by Triple-A manager Phil Nevin on Saturday night. Less than 24 hours later, the reliever made his big league debut against the Dodgers in the sixth inning. Schugel made a nifty play to retire Guerrero, the first batter he faced, but Pederson followed with a home run. Schugel's father, Jeff, is a former Dodgers scout. More >
Slump busting: Puig came into the game 2-for-17 after a Saturday night benching. Pederson came into the game 3-for-17 with eight strikeouts, but he went 3-for-4 with a homer, double and two runs scored.
"I don't worry about his velocity ever. That's not his game. It's location. He had some trouble with his location again and left some pitches up that got hit. That's the way it goes." -- Hale on Collmenter, when asked about the pitcher's fastball that hovered in the mid-80s mph
"Just complete confidence that we were going to win. That's how I felt about it."-- Greinke, when asked how he felt watching Arizona's ninth-inning rally
Dodgers: After going five-plus innings in his Dodgers debut, Brandon McCarthy makes the start in an Interleague series opener against the Mariners at Dodger Stadium on Monday. McCarthy is 2-6 lifetime against Seattle. Scott Van Slyke is likely to get his first start in left field against leftyJames Paxton.
D-backs: The D-backs will send Rubby De La Rosa to the mound Monday in the first of three games against the Padres in San Diego. De La Rosa allowed six runs in 5 1/ 3 innings against the Giants in his first start of the season.

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