Addison Reed protected a three-run lead in the ninth for his 27th save as the Diamondbacks topped the Pirates 7-4 on Thursday.
It was nice to see him get back on the horse one day after serving up a three-run homer versus the Reds (he earned the save anyway). Reed induced a ground out from Jordy Mercer, struck out pinch-hitter Travis Snider, gave up a double to Josh Harrison, and then struck out the talented rookie Gregory Polanco on high cheese to shut off the lights. Reed has allowed only one run over his last eight appearances, slashing his ERA from 4.42 to 3.86.
Gregory Polanco went 2-for-5 with a double, stolen base and run scored against the Diamondbacks on Thursday.
The 22-year-old rookie had an exceptional start to his career in June, but came into tonight slashing a sickly .204/.262/.312 in July. Hopefully this promising game portends a return of his prodigious gifts in August. Polanco is batting only .249 with five homers in 44 contests. His wheels (eight steals) have kept his fantasy value somewhat afloat as he struggles to make contact, specifically against same-sided pitching.
Josh Collmenter yielded three runs on four hits over 5 1/3 innings Thursday versus the Pirates in a no-decision Diamondbacks' victory.
Collmenter struck out four and walked two. He came into tonight with a 1.59 ERA in four career starts against the Pirates and 5-2 with a 2.89 ERA in his last 10 starts at Chase Field. Collmenter remains 8-5 to go with a 4.07 ERA and 1.30 WHIP. He gets the Royals in Arizona next time around.
Jeff Locke was ripped for six runs -- four earned -- over 5 1/3 innings in the Pirates' 7-4 setback against the Diamondbacks on Thursday.
Locke gave up nine hits, and it wasn't all soft stuff, particularly in the sixth inning, when he simply ran out of gas. In that frame, pinch-hitter Andy Marte smacked a two-run homer and Aaron Hill punched out a solo round-tripper. He was also obliterated Saturday against the Rockies, yielding six earned runs in 6 2/3 innings, but posted a 2.38 ERA in his eight starts before that. The regression doctor has had an appointment with Locke for some time. Locke (3.77 ERA) welcomes the Marlins to town on Wednesday hoping the routine checkup doesn't reveal further deterioration.
Yasiel Puig went 2-for-3 with a double, homer, walk, and two runs scored in Thursday's win over the Braves.
The Dodgers completed its first three-game minimum home sweep over the Braves in 24 years, and in so doing won their sixth straight. Puig's .319 batting average ranks second in the National League, same as his .958 OPS. The center fielder is on pace for 18 homers, 82 RBI and 91 runs.
Adrian Gonzalez went 2-for-3 with a double, walk and RBI Thursday as the Dodgers edged the Braves 2-1.
Gonzalez's double to deep right center in the first plated Yasiel Puig and gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. The Dodgers only required one more run to win -- Puig cranked a solo homer two innings later -- as Clayton Kershaw gave up only one run in a complete game. The veteran first baseman Gonzalez, who has six multi-hit games in his last nine, carries a .265/.327/.447 batting line with 15 home runs and 71 RBI.
Clayton Kershaw dazzled again in Thursday's victory over the Braves, racking up nine strikeouts and allowing only one run in a 2-1 complete-game victory.
Kershaw walked none and allowed nine hits in his 10th straight victory -- his first regular season win over the Braves, the only NL team he'd never vanquished in the regular season -- and the Dodgers' sixth consecutive win. He's allowed only nine runs in 86 innings over his last 11 starts. Having improved to 13-2 with a 1.71 ERA, Kershaw hosts the crosstown Angels on Tuesday.
Julio Teheran pitched a gem but had the misfortune of running into Clayton Kershaw on Thursday, allowing two runs and striking out nine over eight innings in a 2-1 loss.
Teheran exorcised some Dodgers Stadium demons; he coughed up six runs and eight hits over 2 2/3 innings in Game 3 of Atlanta's 13-6 loss in the NL division series last year. He has now yielded three runs or less and worked at least seven innings in seven of his past nine outings. Teheran brings a 10-7 record, 2.69 ERA and 1.04 WHIP into a scheduled start versus Seattle next week.