Greinke sharp as LA downs rival
SAN DIEGO (AP)
Zack Greinke doesn't have fond memories of his last outing at Petco Park. His return went off without hitch.
Greinke allowed one run in eight sharp innings, Adrian Gonzalez ended a wild Edinson Volquez's no-hit bid with a homer in the sixth and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres 6-1 Saturday night.
In his first outing in San Diego since breaking his collarbone in a brawl with Carlos Quentin April 11, Greinke had a season-high eight strikeouts. He allowed four hits and only pitched to two batters over the minimum through seven innings in his longest outing of the season.
"When he's spot on with command, Zack is a fun pitcher to watch," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Location is such a big thing with him, and it was clear he was locked in. What you saw today is what we expect from a pitcher of his caliber. Hopefully he can keep going like this and help us turn things around."
Mattingly hopes the Greinke's outing inspires his team to play better and live up to its vast potential — and lift the team out of last place in the NL Central.
"I do think the team has been lacking confidence," Mattingly said. "If tough when you don't win and you're stuck in last place and you're not putting up runs with consistency. When you go into that clubhouse and there's no victory music playing too often, it wears on your confidence.
"A win like this is what we're capable of when we put it all together," Mattingly added. "Hopefully it'll help us gain some confidence as a club and help us get on a little run here."
San Diego's home winning streak was snapped at eight.
Volquez did not allow a hit until Gonzalez, the former Padres first baseman, led off the sixth with his ninth home run. But the Padres' right-hander allowed a run in the fifth on three walks and a fielder's choice by Skip Schumaker.
Volquez lost for the first time in six starts. Volquez allowed five runs — three unearned — and walked a career-high seven in 5 2-3 innings.
"Volquez had a good moving fastball working for him, but he got away with them swinging at a lot of balls outside the strike zone," Padres manager Bud Black said. "Eventually, the Dodgers walked. It finally came back to haunt him."
The Padres remain the only major league team without a no-hitter.
Hanley Ramirez put the game out of reach with a solo home run in the seventh he launched into the third deck in left field that made it 6-0.
Quentin was 0 for 3 with two strikeouts against Greinke.
The matchup didn't enhance Greinke's motivation.
"I don't think much about it," Greinke said. "It seems like you guys do, but it's just baseball to me. It felt like any other start."
Greinke didn't allow a hit until the fourth, when Chase Headley singled to right. He didn't allow a run until the eighth, when Jesus Guzman doubled in Yasmani Grandal from second base.
Kenley Jansen pitched a scoreless ninth and the Dodgers won for just the fourth time in 13 games. They're still mired in last place, but the win picked up the spirits of a floundering club.
"You hope this is the start of something special, a run that gets us back into the thick of things," Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said. "Then again, we've thought that before and said that before and it hasn't happened. We just need to go do it. It's time for us to start playing better."
Dodgers rookie Yasiel Puig went 0 for 3 with two walks, marking just the third time in 18 games that he hasn't gotten a hit.
NOTES: Dodgers LHP Chris Capuano will starting Sunday's game against the Padres on short rest. Capuano asked for the opportunity following a solid start Wednesday, his first since coming off the 15-day disabled list. Manager Don Mattingly said he would be limited to roughly 75 pitches. . The Padres placed LHP Clayton Richard on the 15-day disabled list with left shoulder inflammation and called up RHP Anthony Bass in a corresponding move. Black said that RHP Tim Stauffer, RHP Tyson Ross and LHP Robbie Erlin, currently in Triple-A Tucson, are candidates to replace Richard in the starting rotation. . The Padres also promoted RHP Brad Boxberger from Triple-A Tuscon and optioned OF Jaff Decker back to Tucson. . Padres 1B Kyle Blanks was a late scratch due to back soreness. Mark Kotsay played Blanks' position and took his No. 5 spot in the lineup. . The Dodgers released veteran catcher Ramon Hernandez.