The Dodgers are becoming accustomed to delayed starts, between Sunday's rain and the prolonged team wide slump, the entire season could be considered a waiting period. Gerrit Cole outdueled Zack Greinke and led the Pirates to the 6-3 win.
Neither pitcher was on their A-game, but Cole avoided big mistakes while Greinke allowed a game changing three run long ball to Pedro Alvarez. The home run untied the game at two, and put Pittsburgh ahead 5-2. Coming into Sunday, Alvarez was just 1-12 against Greinke.
Greinke was off from the get go, as he gave up two runs in the first inning and threw 31 pitches. Greinke couldn't find a consistent rhythm, and allowed at least one hit per frame. On the contrary, the flame throwing Cole was able to cut his losses. Cole consistently sat around the high 90's and retired six consecutive batters at two separate points.
Cole, the UCLA alumn, got the victory by tossing five and two thirds innings and three earned runs. Despite the consistent overwhelming fastballs, Cole only accumulated one strikeout.
Yasiel Puig moved back to the cleanup spot and went 3-4 with a stolen base, and already sports eight multi hit games. Adrian Gonzalez had an unlucky afternoon, hitting two of the longest outs possible, and both ended up a few feet shy of homer runs on the left field warning track. In addition, Gonzalez's ground rule double was to the deepest part of PNC Park.
On the bright side, Andre Ethier's hot streak continued, going 2-4 with two RBI. On the series, Ethier hit .500 via an impressive 6-12 mark.
The never ending theme of struggling with runners in scoring position cost the Dodgers. The best opportunity came in the top of the sixth inning, but Luis Cruz stuck out with the bags full of blue. Alex Presley added an insurance solo shot off of Matt Guerrier in the bottom of the sixth inning.
After losing the series to the Pirates, the Dodgers haven't won a road series since May 20-22 at Milwaukee.
The Dodgers nine game road trip continues, but Don Mattingly's club has an off day Monday. Looking ahead, the Dodgers play a brief two game series with the Yankees on Tuesday and Wednesday. The historic rivals haven't played each other since 2010.
Home runs: Pedro Alvarez (15), Alex Presley (2)
WP - Gerrit Cole (2-0): 5 2/3 IP, 7 hits, 3 runs, 1 strike out and no walks
LP - Zack Greinke (3-2): 5 IP, 8 hits, 5 runs, 3 strike outs, 2 walks
Sv - Jason Grilli (25): 1 IP, 2 strike outs