PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 07: Starting pitcher Chad Billingsley #58 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the MLB game at Chase Field on July 7, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Chad Billingsley gave up five doubles on Saturday night and lost his fifth consecutive start for the first time in his career as the Dodgers scored early but fell again to the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-3 at Chase Field in Phoenix.
The Dodgers scored first for the third time in three games in the series, as Jerry Hairston Jr. hit a two-run home run for a 2-0 lead just three batters into the game. The Dodgers have scored in the first inning in five of their last seven games, and have outscored their opponents 61-34 in the opening frame this season.
But in their last six games, against the Reds and Diamondbacks, while the Dodgers have scored eight runs in the first inning they have scored just 11 runs in the other innings combined.
Billingsley held a 2-0 lead heading into the fifth inning, when Miguel Montero led off the inning with one of those doubles. Geoff Blum followed with a single, and both scored on a double by Gerardo Parra to tie the score at 2-2. Parra later scored on a sacrifice fly by Stephen Drew.
Arizona added another run off Billingsley in the sixth inning, when Justin Upton drowned out the boos with a leadoff double then advanced to third and home on a pair of fly balls.
Billingsley walked none, the second straight start that he has not issued a free pass. It is the second time in his career that he has had consecutive starts with no walks, with the other occurrence coming earlier this season (April 11-17).
Billingsley also struck out five on the night, and his punchout of Trevor Cahill in the third inning made Billingsley the 12th Los Angeles Dodger with 1,000 strikeouts in his career.
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Down 4-2 in the seventh inning, catcher A.J. Ellis brought the Dodgers to within one with a solo home run, his seventh of the season. Ellis was 3-for-4 on the night and reached base in six consecutive plate appearances before grounding into a double play in the ninth inning.
Jason Kubel added a solo home run for Arizona off Josh Lindblom in the eighth inning for an insurance run.
Luis Cruz went 1-for-3 with a double and a walk and has four doubles in six games as a Dodger.
- Juan Uribe went 0-for-3 and is hitless in his last 27 at-bats. He is now hitting .194/.252/.271 on the season.
- The Dodgers have hit six home runs in seven games in July, matching their home run total for June in 28 games.
Matt Kemp was 1-for-5 with a single and a run scored as the designated hitter in a rehab game with Triple A Albuquerque on Saturday night, his fifth rehab game and first with the Isotopes on this assignment.
Home Run: Jerry Hairston Jr. (4), A.J. Ellis (7); Jason Kubel (15)
WP - Trevor Cahill (7-7): 7 IP, 6 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk, 6 strikeouts
LP - Chad Billingsley (4-9): 6 IP, 6 hits, 4 runs, 5 strikeouts
Sv - J.J. Putz (16): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout