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Dodgers-Braves: Swoon Continues For LA In 8-2 Loss to Atlanta

Bleacher ReportSenior Analyst IAugust 9, 2009

This past Sunday, Eric Stults made his first start since May 30 for the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium.

Despite having a decent outing, he couldn’t snag a win as the Los Angeles Dodgers (67-45) fell to the Atlanta Braves (58-54) 8-2.

The Dodgers have lost four of the last five and 11 of their last 18 games.

Stults, who has been pitching in Triple-A Albuquerque since coming off the DL July 1st, was called on to start Sunday’s game after Jason Schmidt suffered another injury to a strained shoulder.

Fellow southpaw Scott Elbert was announced as the starting pitcher before the game on Friday, but pitched the 12th inning of a 9-5 defeat that evening and was optioned back to Triple-A before yesterday's game.

On short notice, Stults went five innings and gave a solid effort. He allowed three runs on five hits, and also struck out three, while only throwing 75 pitches (51 strikes).

The Braves scored first when Matt Diaz homered to right in the second inning to put the Braves out in front, 1-0. They tacked on another run in the third to make it a 2-0 lead on a Martin Prado RBI single.

In the fourth against Stults, the Braves then loaded the bases with nobody out.

He got Adam LaRoche to bounce into a 4-6-3 double play, but it also brought home the runner from third and made it a three-run margin at 3-0.

On the opposing side, Javier Vasquez dominated Los Angeles all day. Vasquez cruised to a masterful eight innings in the Braves 8-2 win. He struck out seven and walked one.

The Dodgers offensive ineptitude these past few weeks, and base running mistakes assisted Vasquez in this important victory.

Joe Torre's team now heads to the Bay Area tomorrow night to face the rival Giants for a three-game tilt.

Hiroki Kuroda (4-5, 4.44) will take on Jonathan Sanchez (5-9, 4.49) in the series opener.

The Giants lost today and remain 5.5 games behind the Dodgers in the NL West.

 

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