Diamondbacks fall to Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers tied a modern major league record by winning their 12 th consecutive home game to begin the season, scoring all of their runs in the first inning in a 3-1 victory Tuesday night over the struggling Arizona Diamondbacks.
The Dodgers, who own the best record in the majors at 20-8, have become the second team since 1900 to win their first 12 home games in a season, matching the feat of the 1911 Detroit Tigers.
For the Diamondbacks (11-16), it was another frustrating defeat brought about by a lack of clutch hitting. Arizona’s beleaguered batters stranded at least one baserunner in every inning except the ninth, finishing with a total of nine men left on base. The D-backs stranded a runner at second base in six of the nine innings.
“We just couldn’t do anything offensively at opportune times again,” Diamondbacks manager Bob Melvin said.
Throughout the game, the Diamondbacks were bewildered in key situations by Los Angeles starter Jeff Weaver and four relievers (including closer Jonathan Broxton, who retired the side in order in the ninth to earn his eighth save). Weaver (1-0, 1.00 ERA) allowed a run on five hits in five innings for his first victory in the majors since 2007.
Arizona starter Max Scherzer (0-3, 3.38 ERA) was charged with the hard-luck loss and is still looking for his first major league win. Scherzer pitched six innings and gave up three runs (two earned) on four hits. He struck out four and walked two.
Scherzer, a 24-year-old right-hander who is in his second season in the majors, has compiled an ERA of 3.16 over his first 21 appearances (including 12 starts) with the Diamondbacks. Due to a lack of run support, his career record is 0-7.
“I just want to go out there and give the team a chance to win,” Scherzer said following Tuesday’s game. “I really work on trying to develop consistency on every pitch.”
The Dodgers scored their three runs on two hits and an Arizona error in the bottom of the first. Former D-back second baseman Orlando Hudson began the rally for Los Angeles by lifting a one-out double down the left-field line. After the Diamondbacks opted to walk Manny Ramirez intentionally, Andre Ethier drove in Hudson with a sharp single to right-center. Ramirez, who advanced to third on Ethier’s base hit, scored on a groundout to second base by James Loney. The Dodgers tallied their third run of the inning when Arizona shortstop Josh Wilson fielded a ground ball off the bat of Russell Martin and threw wildly past first baseman Chad Tracy. Ethier scored from second base on the error.
Scherzer scored the Diamondbacks’ only run in the top of the third, when he led off with a single and eventually crossed home plate with two outs on a wild pitch by Weaver.
With the loss, the D-backs fell to 8 and 1/2 games behind the first-place Dodgers in the National League West. Arizona is in a virtual tie with Colorado (10-15) for last place in the division.
By: Tom Kessler
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