The theme for Dan Haren on Friday was a terrible first impression, followed by a terrific recovery. Haren contributed on the mound and at the plate in the Dodgers' 6-2 victory over the Mets on Friday night at Dodger Stadium.
Haren allowed a home run to his first batter faced in the first inning, when Curtis Granderson took took him over the wall in right field for a quick 1-0 lead. It was the 25th home run allowed by Haren this season, second most in baseball, and his seventh in the first inning.
"For Dan Haren it is a tired old script," noted Vin Scully on the SportsNet LA broadcast. "That is the 25th home run he has allowed."
But Haren recovered quite nicely, retiring 20 of his next 22 batters faced, pitching seven innings to pick up his 11th win of the season. Haren earned a $250,000 bonus for reaching 150 on the season.
Things also started out poorly at the plate for Haren, who managed to bunt into a double play in the third inning, then completely missed a bunt on a suicide squeeze play in the fifth inning, hanging Justin Turner out to dry.
Luckily for the Dodgers, Erisbel Arruebarrena - who walked - was able to advance to third base as Turner got into a rundown, then Haren delivered a full-count, two-out single to bring home the go-ahead run.
Dodgers pitchers this season have 12 RBI, and Haren has five of them.
Dee Gordon drove home the Dodgers' first run with an RBI single in the third inning, one of three hits on the night. He added a triple into the right field corner in the seventh inning, his major-league-leading 11th of the season. Only two Los Angeles Dodgers have had more triples in a season: Willie Davis (16, in 1970) and Kenny Lofton (12, in 2006).
The seventh inning busted the game open, thanks to a two-out throwing error by shortstop Wilmer Flores - who also tripped over his own feet earlier in the game - allowing Gordon to score and extending the inning for Matt Kemp, whose two-run double was his 28th of the season.
The Mets made three errors on the night.
A.J. Ellis added an RBI double in the eighth inning, snapping an 0-for-11 skid.
The Dodgers go for a third straight win on Saturday night, with Zack Greinke on the mound with seven days rest after elbow discomfort. The Mets will counter with rookie Jacob deGrom, who will be activated from the disabled list to start the middle game of the series.
Home run: Curtis Granderson (16)
WP - Dan Haren (11-10): 7 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 6 strikeouts
LP - Jon Niese (7-9): 6⅔ IP, 8 hits, 5 runs (2 earned), 3 walks, 4 strikeouts