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Diamondbacks continue to beat Dodgers pitching like a drum

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona Diamondbacks Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

Kenta Maeda continued his nightmare April by serving up batting practice to the Diamondbacks in an 11-5 Dodgers loss on Saturday night at Chase Field.

Maeda allowed four home runs on Saturday, double his previous high in a major league game. He only allowed two home runs in a game four times last year.

Maeda was the first Dodgers pitcher to allow four home runs in a start since Brock Stewart last Aug. 3.

The home run total might have been even more, but David Peralta just missed a home run in the first inning, settling for a double as his ball hit high off the wall and railing in center field, pretty much the deepest part of the park one can hit a ball without it being a homer.

The problem for Maeda it seemed was catching far too much of the plate with far too many pitches. Take a look at where these pitches were for three of his four home runs allowed:

Maeda was done after five innings, allowing six runs on nine hits. On the season, he has allowed 17 runs in 19 innings for an 8.05 ERA, though if you are searching for a sliver of an upside he does also have 19 strikeouts and just five walks.

After his start on Saturday, Maeda is tied with Ricky Nolasco of the Angels for the major league lead with seven home runs allowed.

The offense

For the second straight night, the Dodgers got their offense started with a home run by their shortstop in the first inning. This time it was Kiké Hernandez, getting the spot start, leading off the game with a home run. He has six extra-base hits in his last six starts, and has reached base by hit or walk in each of his last eight starts, which have come at four different positions.

Down 6-2 in the sixth inning, the Dodgers rallied for three runs, an inning that saw Adrian Gonzalez beat out an infield single to deep shortstop — an out call overturned upon replay review — and a bases loaded walk to Chris Taylor, who also had two singles to continue his Chase Field mastery.

Los Angeles Dodgers v Arizona Diamondbacks
Shades of Jake Taylor in Major League.
Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Austin Barnes was part of the rally in the sixth, driving in one and scoring another, and had two doubles on the night, his first career game with multiple extra-base hits.

After those three runs scored, the Dodgers had the bases loaded with two outs, but J.J. Hoover struck out Justin Turner swinging on a full count pitch to end the threat.

Unable to keep it close

Chris Hatcher relieved Maeda and pitched a scoreless sixth to keep the Dodgers within one run, but ran into problems in the seventh. Two hits, two walks — one with the bases loaded — and an error led to three runs to put the game away. Hatcher has worked at least two innings in five of his six appearances.

Ross Stripling pitched the eighth, the first time in his career he has pitched on back-to-back days, and allowed two more runs.

One of those runs in the eighth inning came courtesy of Peralta, who doubled for the fourth time in the game. Peralta set a Diamondbacks franchise record with those four doubles, and is also the only batter, dating back to at least 1913, to hit four doubles in a game against the Dodgers.

Just in case

The last Dodgers pitcher to allow more than four home runs in a game was Don Sutton, way back on May 7, 1973. All five home runs were solo shots in a 5-4 loss to the Pirates.

Up next

Brandon McCarthy starts the series finale for the Dodgers on Sunday afternoon, a 1:10 p.m. PT start. Shelby Miller starts for Arizona.

Saturday particulars

Home runs: Kiké Hernandez (2); Jake Lamb (4), Yasmany Tomas 2 (4), Chris Herrmann (1)

WP - Robbie Ray (2-0): 5⅓ IP, 9 hits, 5 runs, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts

LP - Kenta Maeda (1-2): 5 IP, 9 hits, 6 runs, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts