Ethier’s HR propels Dodgers over Diamondbacks
LOS ANGELES (AP) Dan Haren didn’t let a little thing like a four-run inning discourage him. He had plenty of confidence in his teammates’ ability to get him some runs, and they didn’t disappoint him against a pitcher they’d never seen before.
Andre Ethier hit a three-run homer and the Dodgers rallied to beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 8-6 on Saturday.
”That inning was kind of fluky there. It seemed like everything that could have gone wrong did,” Haren said. ”Even when I got back to the dugout, I was saying: `If we can keep them there at four, we’re going to win this game.’ Then the offense really stepped up, and it was one hit after the other. It was really fun.”
Haren (3-0) was charged with five runs – two earned – and seven hits over 7 1-3 innings. The right-hander struck out five in his fourth start of the season, six days after his 8-6 victory over the Diamondbacks at Phoenix.
”He has a few weapons he likes to go to,” Diamondbacks left fielder Mark Trumbo said of his former Angels teammate. ”He usually likes to work the outer half of the plate, and that’s what he did tonight with his cutter, his two-seamer, his split and his curve. He’s had a great career – and more than anything, he knows how to pitch. So you take the runs where you can get them. We got four, but he battled back and they battled back.”
Haren departed with an 8-4 lead and was replaced by Brian Wilson, who gave up a two-run double by Martin Prado before retiring Chris Owings on a grounder with runners at the corners to end the eighth. Kenley Jansen pitched a scoreless ninth for his sixth save.
Mike Bolsinger (0-1) made his first major league start and was charged with seven runs – six earned- and seven hits in four-plus innings. He struck out five of the first 11 batters he faced.
The 26-year-old righty was inserted into the rotation in place of an ineffective Trevor Cahill, who went 0-4 with a 9.17 ERA before earning his first career save on Friday. Cahill pitched three perfect innings of relief Saturday, and has retired all 12 batters he’s faced since his 8-6 loss to Haren on April 13.
Bolsinger pitched three innings last Monday in his big league debut, allowing two runs and six hits against the New York Mets after winning both of his starts with Triple-A Reno.
Los Angeles was trailing 4-0 in the fourth when Ethier hit his second homer of the season.
”I think any home run like that energizes you,” teammate Matt Kemp said. ”We’re never out of a game, especially with the offense that we have. We have a lot of guys who can drive the ball our of the ballpark. We just need to get guys on base. And if we continue to do that, we’ll be very successful. Today we got big hits with runners on base, and we didn’t do that too much last night.”
The Dodgers grabbed an 8-4 lead with five more in the fifth, including a two-run single by Adrian Gonzalez and a two-run double by Kemp. Haren led off the inning with a single and later scored when Prado fielded a potential double-play grounder to third base by Hanley Ramirez with the bases loaded and dropped the ball as he looked toward second base.
Bolsinger got his first big league hit during Arizona’s four-run third. Paul Goldschmidt hit a two-run single with the bases loaded. Ramirez’s fifth error of the season at shortstop made three of the runs unearned.
”We had a quick four-run deficit and we were kind of playing back on our heels and not playing the way we were capable of doing,” Ethier said. ”But Gonzo and Matty came up with big hits right there and Haren did a good job from there on out and kept their guys off the bases.”
NOTES: Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw, who hasn’t pitched in a game since beating the Diamondbacks in the season opener in Australia, is scheduled to throw to batters in simulated game conditions on Sunday. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner has been sidelined by a muscle strain in his upper back. … Haren, who came in leading all active major leaguers with a 4.09 strikout-to-walk ratio, has 20 strikeouts and two walks this season. … The Dodgers’ rotating outfield of Ethier, Kemp, Carl Crawford and Yasiel Puig all entered Saturday hitting .235 or lower through the team’s first 17 games. … Gonzalez extended his hitting streak to 14 games. His longest streak in the majors is 18, two seasons ago with Boston.