Dodgers Report: Orlando Hudson

3 up, 3 down: Dodgers 6, Padres 5

April, 7, 2012

SAN DIEGO -- The Dodgers have a chance to sweep their opening series of the season Sunday afternoon against the Padres.

They reached this point by winning a long, ugly game Saturday night.

Dee Gordon drove in the winning run on a two-out single in the 11th inning in the 6-5 victory over the Padres on Saturday at Petco Park.

A.J. Ellis scored after he led off the inning with a single and advanced on a sacrifice bunt. Closer Javy Guerra earned the save, striking out one and walking one in the bottom of the 11th.

The Dodgers had squandered a 5-0 lead, as the Padres tied the score with five runs in the fifth inning. The Padres drew three consecutive walks with the bases loaded in the inning.

Dodgers starting pitcher Chris Capuano threw four scoreless innings before running into trouble in the fifth innings. He was charged with four runs in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out four but walked five.

The Dodgers scored all five of their runs in the first four innings against right-hander Dustin Moseley.

Juan Uribe and Juan Rivera had the day off from the starting lineup but came in off the bench. Manager Don Mattingly said he wanted to rest them and have them in the lineup Sunday in the series finale against left-hander Clayton Richard. Adam Kennedy started at third base in place of Uribe, and Tony Gwynn Jr. started in left field in place of Rivera.

The Good

More from the leadoff spot. After he went 1-for-10 in the first two games, Gordon was 3-for-4 with a double, two walks and three stolen bases Saturday. The three stolen bases tied a career high. He led off with a single and stole his first base of the season in the first inning. He advanced to third on a groundout and scored on Matt Kemp’s sacrifice fly. In the third inning, Gordon drew a walk, stole second and scored on Kemp’s single.

The usual suspects. Kemp extended his hitting streak to 15 games (dating to last season) with an RBI single in the third inning. Gordon and Mark Ellis both drew two-out walks before Kemp singled for a 2-0 lead. Andre Ethier then hit a two-run double for a 4-0 lead.
Kemp also had a double in the seventh.

Some power. A.J. Ellis hit his first home run of the season, a solo shot off Moseley for a 5-0 lead in the fourth inning. It was the third home run of Ellis’ major-league career. He hit two home runs in 31 games with the Dodgers last season.

The Bad

Meltdown in the fifth inning. The Padres scored five runs in the fifth inning to tie the game with five walks, a wild pitch and two hits. Capuano issued a walk with the bases loaded for the first run, and Jamey Wright issued two walks with the bases loaded for two more runs. Then Scott Elbert’s wild pitch allowed a fourth run to score. After hitting Yonder Alonso, Elbert gave up an RBI single to Orlando Hudson that tied the score 5-5 before the inning ended when Nick Hundley was thrown out trying to score.

Another short start. Capuano lasted just 4 2/3 innings. Walks were a big factor -- he issued five. The Dodgers used seven relievers, weighing heavily on the bullpen for the second time this series. Opening Day starter Clayton Kershaw also threw a short outing Thursday, when illness limited him to three innings. On Friday, Chad Billingsley saved the bullpen by throwing 8 1/3 innings.

Wright not right. Wright replaced Capuano in the fifth inning and threw eight pitches -- and none of them were for strikes. He issued two walks with the bases loaded, allowing two runs to score before Elbert replaced him. Saturday was Wright’s second appearance of the season after he pitched a scoreless 2/3 of an inning Friday.

3 up, 3 down: Dodgers 5, Padres 3

April, 5, 2012

SAN DIEGO -- Despite losing Clayton Kershaw to a stomach flu after the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner gamely battled through three shutout innings, the Los Angeles Dodgers bullpen was just good enough hold the San Diego Padres at bay in a 5-3, season-opening victory for the Dodgers before a sellout crowd of 42,941 at Petco Park.

The Dodgers went ahead to stay on a pair of bases-loaded walks in the fourth inning by James Loney and A.J. Ellis, then put the game to bed on Matt Kemp's two-run homer in the top of the eighth. Javy Guerra, who as a rookie saved 21 games for the Dodgers last season, notched his first one of 2012 by pitching the ninth inning.

Kershaw's early departure forced the Dodgers to go deep into their bullpen in their first game of the season, as he was followed by a parade of five relievers. But manager Don Mattingly didn't call on long reliever Jamey Wright, meaning the Dodgers probably are OK for Friday night's game without calling up additional bullpen help from the minors.

The good

Beast mode. Any concerns about Kemp's high strikeout rate in spring training quickly dissipated as the Dodgers center fielder went 2-for-4 with two runs scored, three RBIs and his first home run of the season, a two-run shot off Padres reliever Brad Brach in the eighth inning that landed atop the out-of-town scoreboard in right-center.

Glove Swag. Dee Gordon might have been robbed of his first triple of the year by a tough official scorer, who ruled three-base error on a ball that ticked off the glove of Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin. But nothing could take away the defensive play Gordon made to end the fourth inning, a diving stop behind the bag and on the edge of the outfield grass. Gordon got to his feet quickly and fired a bullet to first, taking what would have been a clean single to center away from Yonder Alonso.

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Yasiel Puig
.298 15 66 88
HRA. Gonzalez 25
RBIA. Gonzalez 112
RD. Gordon 90
OPSY. Puig .867
WC. Kershaw 20
ERAC. Kershaw 1.80
SOC. Kershaw 228