A five-run sixth inning by the Diamondbacks derailed the Dodgers' train on Friday night, delivering a 5-3 loss to the Dodgers to snap their three-game winning streak. Coupled with a win by San Francisco in Pittsburgh earlier Friday, the Dodgers saw their lead in the National League West trimmed to a half-game.
Clayton Kershaw was sailing along nicely through five innings. He needed 79 pitches to that point, but had allowed just one hit and one walk, to go along with his six strikeouts. It extended his scoreless streak against the Diamondbacks to 17 consecutive innings, dating back to last season.
But that all ended in the sixth inning.
One night after the Dodgers burned the Diamondbacks with four consecutive hits in the first inning, Arizona turned the trick in the sixth inning to end Kershaw's night. Those four hits came with one out after catcher Henry Blanco walked to open the inning, and was highlighted by Justin Upton's two-run triple. A Jamey Wright wild pitch gave the Diamondbacks another run and a 5-2 lead.
The Dodgers couldn't do much off Josh Collmenter but they did some damage off reliever Bryan Shaw in the seventh inning. Down three runs, the Dodgers loaded the bases with nobody out then chased Shaw with an RBI single by Juan Rivera. Unfortunately that's all the Dodgers would score in the seventh, as pinch hitter Jerry Hairston Jr. struck out looking and James Loney flew out to left fielder Jason Kubel, who gunned down Mark Ellis at the plate to keep the Diamondbacks' lead at two runs.
A double by Luis Cruz and a single by A.J. Ellis in the eighth inning put the tying runs on base for the Dodgers in the eighth inning with nobody out but a fly ball to center, not deep enough to score Cruz from third base, was sandwiched in between a pair of strikeouts to end the threat.
The Dodgers brought the tying run to the plate again in the ninth inning, twice, but J.J. Putz retired the side for his 15th save to close out the game.
Death Of A Meme
Friday night was the first loss of the season for the Dodgers with Adam Kennedy in the starting lineup batting fifth. The Dodgers had won the first 10 such games this season, and amazingly enough the one loss came on the night when Kennedy hit his first home run of the season.
While it was a fun little stat, it was more coincidental than anything else; after all, even with the home run he is hitting .233/.317/.317 this season and even with the Dodgers' depleted lineup should never hit fifth. But it was fun while it lasted, and even Kennedy got into the act, hitting .316/.364/.500 in his 11 starts batting fifth.
- Javy Guerra pitched a scoreless seventh inning in his first game since getting activated from the disabled list. It was his first major league outing since June 2.
- Loney was 2-for-5 and is 8-for-16 since his 0-for-28 slump that ended Sunday.
- For the first time in his five games as a Dodger, Luis Cruz didn't drive in a run.
Matt Kemp went 1-for-3 with an intentional walk and two strikeouts Friday night in his fourth and final rehab game with Class A Rancho Cucamonga, and played seven innings in center field. Kemp will play a pair of games in Albuquerque on Saturday and Sunday.
Home Runs: Adam Kennedy (1)
WP - Josh Collmenter (1-2): 6 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs (1 earned), 2 walks, 6 strikeouts
LP - Clayton Kershaw (6-5): 5 1/3 IP, 5 hits, 5 runs, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts
Sv - J.J. Putz (15): 1 IP, 2 hits