There was a time this season when an early 5-0 deficit (hell, probably even a 2-0 or 3-0 deficit) would have spelled doom for the Dodgers. However, the Big Blue Machine is not concerned with such petty things. The Dodgers rallied for five runs in the top of the seventh inning, with a three-run double by James Loney the big blow, to beat the Braves 8-6 in the opener of a three-game series at Turner Field in Atlanta.
The last three days have seen the Dodgers collect three win against three different teams in three different cities. The Dodgers have won five straight games and 10 of their last 11, and are scoring runs at their best rate of the year. The Dodgers have scored six or more runs in 10 of their last 14 games.
Apparently Dioner Navarro took all the defective bats with him when he left.
After the hit parade against Chad Billingsley was over, the Dodgers were down 5-2 and there were no outs in the fifth inning. Hong-Chih Kuo was asked to put out the fire, which is exactly what he did. In his longest outing of the season, Kuo pitched two innings, retiring five of the six batters he faced, including three leg-kick-inducing strikeouts.
Kuo picked up his first victory of the season.
Juan Rivera, who drove in the first two Dodger runs in the fourth inning with a single, knocked in another tally in the sixth inning with another safety. That set the stage for the Dodgers to ruin the night of Arodys Vizcaino. The 20-year old relieved Brandon Beachy in the top of the seventh, and started things off by striking out Rod Barajas. Then, after three singles to load the bases, Loney unloaded them with a double down the right field line to give the Dodgers a 6-5 lead.
After Matt Kemp was intentionally walked, an unintentional walk to Rivera ended the night for Vizcaino, and loaded the bases for Andre Ethier. The Braves brought in Cristhian Martinez, who unfortunately for Atlanta but fortunately for Ethier throws with his right hand, and Ethier promptly singled in two more runs.
Dee Gordon had three singles and two stolen bases tonight, scoring three runs.
Javy Guerra picked up the save in the ninth inning, though he did allow a solo home run to Dan Uggla. It was the first major league home run allowed by Guerra, who has pitched 35 2/3 innings this season.
Tomorrow the Dodgers play in the same city on consecutive days for the first time since Wednesday. Nathan Eovaldi makes his final start before moving to the bullpen, facing southpaw Mike Minor.
WP - Hong-Chih Kuo (1-2): 2 IP, 1 hit, 3 strikeouts.
LP - Arodys Vizcaino (1-1): 1/3 IP, 4 hits, 5 hits, 2 walks, 1 strikeout
Sv - Javy Guerra (14): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 run, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts