Dodgers beat NL West-leading D-backs 6-3, end 3-game skid
LOS ANGELES (AP) It took a series of quirks for the Dodgers to end their three-game skid.
The scuffling Dodgers improved to 4-8 against their division rivals this year and avoided being swept for the second time this season on a night when they got back one of their injured stars. Yasiel Puig went 3 for 4 with two runs scored in his return from the disabled list.
”We realize the position we put ourselves in. The urgency is there,” manager Dave Roberts said. ”We’re just still not playing complete baseball.”
After playing Arizona 12 times in their first 36 games, the Dodgers won’t see the D-backs again until Aug. 30.
Don’t think they aren’t glad.
”It’s going to be nice not to throw against them,” starter Alex Wood said. ”Their lineup reminds me a lot of ours, a lot of slug in their lineup. If you leave it over the plate, they’re going to hit it.”
With the score tied 1-all, the Dodgers loaded the bases in the fifth but failed to cash in.
Their luck changed in the sixth.
Andrew Chafin came in and walked pinch-hitter Max Muncy to load the bases again.
Silvino Bracho followed and hit Chris Taylor with a pitch, forcing in Barnes. Bracho unleashed a wild pitch that scored Puig and the Dodgers led 4-1 before Enrique Hernandez struck out to end the inning.
”It was kind of an awkward game. There really was no rhythm,” Roberts said. ”It was funky.”
Arizona rallied in the seventh, closing to 4-3 on Paul Goldschmidt’s RBI single and A.J. Pollock’s run-scoring groundout.
But the Dodgers extended their lead to 6-3 in the eighth on pinch-hitter Chase Utley’s two-run double that scored Barnes, who walked, and Puig, who singled.
”We’ll take them however we can get them as long as we can come out on top,” Wood said.
The Diamondbacks’ season high-tying three-game winning streak was stopped.
”Sometimes we’ve just got to have some luck,” Jansen said. ”That’s how things get going for us.”
The game began on an unusual note, with the Diamondbacks taking a 1-0 lead in the first on Nick Ahmed’s inside-the-park home run to deep center field.
Hernandez crashed into the wall tracking the ball against the early evening sky. He got up but Puig raced over from right, grabbed the ball and fired it into the infield. A sliding Ahmed beat the relay throw and Grandal’s tag.
Arizona starter Patrick Corbin gave up one run and three hits in five innings. The left-hander struck out seven and walked four.
Wood gave up one run and five hits in five innings. He struck out four and walked three.
Diamondbacks: 3B Jake Lamb (left AC joint sprain) threw, ran and took grounders while taking a day off from hitting. … LHP Robbie Ray (strained left oblique) exercised in the pool and worked on his overall body strength.
Dodgers: 3B Justin Turner (broken left wrist) had six to 10 at-bats in a simulated game, took grounders and threw to the bases. Turner will take up to 10 at-bats on Thursday and is expected to be activated for the first time this season when the team is in Washington next week. … Clayton Kershaw (left biceps tendinitis) played soft catch with a trainer, stretching out to 60 feet, but Roberts said it’s too soon to know whether the left-hander could return in 10 days. … LHP Tony Cingrani, who pitched an inning of relief on Tuesday, went on the 10-day DL with left shoulder inflammation.
INSIDE THE PARK
It was Ahmed’s first inside-the-park homer and the first against the Dodgers since Aug. 8, 2012, when Colorado’s Eric Young did it against Chad Billingsley at Dodger Stadium. ”I knew I hit it good,” Ahmed said. ”After I saw he didn’t catch it, I was thinking three and didn’t realize it had bounced so far back. I saw him waving me at third and I went as fast as I could.”
IN THE CLUTCH
Utley is leading the majors with seven pinch hits this season. He’s 7 for 12 with four RBIs in that role.
Diamondbacks: RHP Zack Greinke (3-2, 4.10 ERA) starts the opener of a four-game home series against the Nationals.
Dodgers: RHP Walker Buehler (2-0, 1.13) starts the series opener against the Reds. He contributed to Los Angeles’ combined no-hitter in Mexico last weekend with six dominant innings while earning his second win.
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