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4-run 7th inning propels Dodgers to 5th straight win

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

LOS ANGELES -- A four-run rally in the seventh inning did it all for the Dodgers on Saturday night. The club chased Jon Lester after an effective and efficient six innings, it erased a one-run deficit, and provided enough cushion to hold off the Cubs in a 5-2 win on Saturday night at Dodger Stadium.

The Dodgers have immediately followed their five-game losing streak with a five-game winning streak.

The seventh inning opened with four straight hits by the Dodgers, the last two a double to right field by Jose Peraza for his first major league RBI and a single up the middle by Andre Ethier against the lefty Lester to break  a 2-2 tie and give the Dodgers their first lead of the night.

That chased Lester, then two singles later in the inning tacked on another run, providing the final margin.

Jim Johnson, fresh off his clean inning and save on Sunday, allowed a single to open the eighth inning then one out later hit Kris Bryant and Miguel Montero to load the bases, both on 0-2 pitches. Johnson remained in the game after a brief mound visit and immediately got Addison Russell to ground into a double play to end the threat and preserve the lead.

It might have been a bit bumpy at times, but the Dodgers bullpen was solid on Saturday, recording the final 13 outs of the game after Mat Latos was pulled with two outs in the fifth. The Cubs that inning scored the go-ahead run on a disputed balk call against Latos with runners on first and third and two outs.

Latos struck out five in his 4⅔ innings, allowing two runs on four hits and three walks. Escape artist Luis Avilan got out of the fifth-inning jam then pitched a scoreless sixth.

The Dodgers bullpen allowed two hits and two walks in 4⅓ scoreless innings, with six strikeouts.

Peraza, who was 2-for-4, also stole third base in the third inning and scored the Dodgers' first run. The Dodgers stole three bases against Lester, who has allowed a major-league-high 39 swipes this season. But he was otherwise effective on the mound, allowing only four hits before that decisive seventh-inning rally.

It was the first major league steal for Peraza, who stole another base in the eighth inning, giving the Dodgers four steals on the night to match their season high.

Up next

Alex Wood goes for the sweep on Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN, with Jake Arrieta starting for the Cubs.

Saturday particulars

Home runs: none

WP - J.P. Howell (5-1): ⅓ IP, 1 strikeout

LP - Jon Lester (8-10): 6+ IP, 8 hits, 5 runs, 7 strikeouts

Sv - Kenley Jansen (27): 1 IP, 1 hit, 1 strikeout