Dodgers win over Diamondbacks worth a second look

Harry How

LOS ANGELES -- After getting their first look at Michael Bolsinger, the Dodgers sized up the right-hander and teed off in his first major league start, beating the Diamondbacks 8-6 in front of 48,541 at Dodger Stadium on Saturday night.

But it didn't start off well for Dan Haren the Dodgers, who fell behind 4-0 in the third inning.

With runners at the corners and one out, Gerardo Parra grounded a ball to second base that might have been an inning-ending double play ball, but shortstop Hanley Ramirez dropped the throw from Dee Gordon, making everybody safe and plating Arizona's first run.

A Paul Goldschmidt single brought home two more runs and a double from Miguel Montero made it 4-0. The inning might have been even worse for Haren had Aaron Hill not been thrown out after rounding second on Goldschmidt's single.

Bolsinger retired the first eight batters he faced, striking out four. But starting with a two-out walk to Haren in the third inning, it all went down hill from there.

"That inning was kind of fluky there. They scored the four runs and it seemed like everything that could have went wrong, went wrong," Haren said. "Even when I came in the dugout after that me and Rick [Honeycutt, pitching coach] were talking, and said if we can keep them there at four we would win this game, and we did. The offense really stepped up."

The Dodgers put a pair of runners on in the fourth inning for Andre Ethier, who deposited a ball into the right pavilion to cut the deficit to 4-3. It was just the second home run by the Dodgers with more than one runner on base this season (Adrian Gonzalez hit a three-run home run last Sunday against Trevor Cahill in Phoenix).

"We had a four-run deficit and we were playing back on our heels, not playing like what we're capable of doing," Ethier said. "Gonzo and Matty came up with big hits, then one swing of the bat puts you right back in it, and changes the feel."

Ethier was questionable to play before the game, as he is one of several Dodgers dealing with a flu bug. Ethier had to get two injections of intravenous fluids before the game.

"He was questionable whether or not he was going to play today, but he hung in there," said manager Don Mattingly. "That home run was huge. Down 4-0, Andre hits that home run, that changes the game."

It gave Ethier 13 RBI in 17 games this season and made him the sixth player to reach 600 runs batted in with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Dodgers rallied for more in the fourth inning, starting with three straight singles to load the bases. Ramirez reached on an error by third baseman Martin Prado to tie the game and chase Bolsinger, then against lefty Oliver Perez a Gonzalez hit a two-run single and Matt Kemp hit a two-run double to give Haren a comfortable advantage.

After starting 0-for-8 with a walk the first time through the batting order against Bolsinger, the Dodgers were 7-for-12 with a home run.

Outside of the four-run frame, Haren didn't give up much, just three hits and one more run. Haren became the first Dodgers starter to throw a pitch in the eighth inning this season, and struck out five with no walks in his 7⅓ innings to improve to 3-0.

"The first couple of innings were really quick. It was what we were looking for, somebody to put a little more rest on our bullpen," Mattingly said. "He gave our bullpen the shot that we needed.

Arizona rallied for two runs against Haren and Brian Wilson in the eighth inning to pull within 8-6, and even put the tying runs on base, but Wilson got Chris Owings to ground out to end the stanza.

Kenley Jansen pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his sixth save of the season, striking out Goldschmidt - representing the tying run at the plate - to end it.

Notes

Gonzalez was 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 14 games.

Gordon was 2-for-4 with a run scored batting leadoff, his team-leading seventh multi-hit game this season.

Kemp stole third base in the fifth inning, his second steal of the season. He is 11-for-11 in stolen base attempts since the start of 2013.

Haren was 1-for-2 with a walk, the first Dodgers pitcher to reach base twice in a game this year. Entering Saturday, Dodgers pitchers were 3-for-37 (.081) with a walk on the season.

Up next

Josh Beckett gets the call in the series finale for the Dodgers on Sunday afternoon, facing off against Josh Collmenter for Arizona.

Saturday particulars

Home run: Andre Ethier (2)

WP - Dan Haren (3-0): 7⅓ IP, 7 hits, 5 runs (2 earned), 5 strikeouts

LP - Michael Bolsinger (0-1): 4+ IP, 7 hits, 7 runs (6 earned), 1 walk, 5 strikeouts

Sv - Kenley Jansen (6): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 strikeout

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