JC's Dodger Line Drives | April 11: Stults Wins Battle of Stand-Ins
The Dodgers Eric Stults out-dueled the D-Backs Yusmerio Petit and Los Angeles evened the weekend series in Arizona at a game each with their 11-2 victory Saturday night.
LA scored three in the fourth, five in the sixth, and three more in the eighth while Arizona could only scratch single runs in the sixth and ninth innings.
Disappointment Turns to Delight
Dodger fans were blue over the injury to Hiroki Kuroda while Stults was not happy being sent to the minors. All were mighty pleased after Stults' effort in defeating the D-Backs. A candidate for the fifth starter slot, Stults struggled this spring with a 9.49 ERA over 12.1 innings in six games as he came to terms with the passing of his mother, who succumbed to liver cancer two weeks before the start of camp. "She enjoyed watching me, and she was watching me tonight," Stults noted after the contest.
Dog Gets Out of the Yard
Orlando Hudson went deep to right on an high, inside fastball to open the scoring. There was a mixed reaction as the many Dodger fans cheered as well as some of the D-Back fans who appreciated all the great things the O-Dog had done for them over the last three years. Hudson also walked in the fifth and doubled in two runs in the eighth to cap his 2-for-4 night. He scored twice and drove in a total of three runs.
Offensive Explosion Appreciated
Manager Joe Torre had to enjoy the relatively easy last half of this game as his touted offense finally got on track. Every Dodger regular got a hit, except for Manny Ramirez who walked twice. Although they stranded 11 runners, that is easier to take when you also plate 11. The Blue Crew went 6-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
Arms at the Ready
Stults pitched five solid innings before tiring in the sixth, giving up two hits and two walks with five strikeouts before back-to-back hits with one out in the sixth brought out the relief corps. Ronald Belisario squelched the rally, going 1.2 innings with three strikeouts. The eight inning featured Cory Wade retiring the side on three fly balls before allowing Jonathan Broxton some work in the ninth. He conceded a garbage time run on a triple and sacrifice fly.
Wakey-Wakey Sleepy Heads
Slumbering Dodger starters Russell Martin and Casey Blake perked up at the plate, with Martin ripping a double down the left-field line that scored two while going 1-4 with a run scored and a walk. Blake was 2-4, scoring once and driving in a run. He doubled in the fifth and singled home Ethier in the sixth. However, both batters also struck out twice.
From Deep in the Minors
The Dodgers' 2008 No. 1 draft pick, Ethan Martin, made his professional debut with the Class-A Great Lakes Loons on Saturday. He pitched five shutout innings as the Loons defeated the Dayton Dragons, 2-0. The 19-year-old Georgia native allowed two singles and two walks while striking out four batters to earn his first professional victory.
Around the West
The Padres took their second straight from the Giants behind Jake Peavy, 6-3. Randy Winn for the Giants and Henry Blanco for the Pads each had three hits. Philadelphia overcame three Colorado homers to win at Denver, 8-4. Ryan Howard drove in three runs while Shane Victorino and Pedro Feliz each went 3-for-5.
The Dodgers close out the season opening road trip Sunday at 1:10 p.m. Pacific when Randy Wolf takes on Dan Haren. Prime Ticket will have the television coverage.
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