Dodgers hold on to beat Diamondbacks

Stephen Dunn

The Dodgers are 9-3 against the Diamondbacks

LOS ANGELES -- Clayton Kershaw pitched seven strong innings and Matt Kemp homered, and the Dodgers held on for a 4-3 victory over the Diamondbacks on Friday night at Dodger Stadium.

Kenley Jansen, pitching for the second time in 11 days and staked to a two-run lead to start the ninth inning, allowed one run to score and put the tying and go-ahead runs on base in the ninth, but escaped the jam for his first save, and his first save opportunity, since June 2.

Kershaw scattered eight hits while striking out seven, ending his run of four straight starts with exactly nine strikeouts. Arizona was able to push across a run against the Dodgers ace in the third inning when Aaron Hill doubled down the left field line.

"He battled and grinded. That's what winning pitchers do," said catcher A.J. Ellis.

Since his blow-up start in Arizona on May 17, during which he allowed seven runs while recording just five outs, Kershaw is 4-1 with a 1.91 ERA in five starts. On the season Kershaw has 71 strikeouts and just eight walks in his 55⅓ innings.

"We knew Kershaw was going to battle, but he seemed to get better as the game went on," said manager Don Mattingly. "I think he's been sharp all year long."

Kershaw was backed on offense by some welcome sources.

Adrian Gonzalez walked in the second innings, then scored on a line drive home run by Kemp to left center field.

The home run for Kemp was his first since May 10, snapping a 26-game and 101-plate-appearance streak that was the second-longest power drought of his career. The longest streak stretched from his rookie campaign in 2006 into 2007, when Kemp went 46 games and 139 plate appearances without a home run.

The Dodgers added an insurance run in the seventh inning when Hanley Ramirez, starting for the first time in three days after A-C joint irritation in his right shoulder, doubled then scored one out later on a single by Gonzalez.

Not to be forgotten, Ellis was 1-for-2 with a pair of walks in his first game back off the disabled list. He then scored from second base - appearing to run through third base coach Lorenzo Bundy's stop sign - on a single by Justin Turner.

Turner didn't start but his pinch hit single added to his team-leading total of eight RBI in June.

Friday particulars

Home run: Matt Kemp (6)

WP - Clayton Kershaw (6-2): 7 IP, 8 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 7 strikeouts

LP - Chase Anderson (5-1): 5 IP, 4 hits, 2 runs, 4 walks, 4 strikeouts

Sv - Kenley Jansen (18): 1 IP, 2 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

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