Sunday, April 6, 2008

Thank you, Mr. Hu

Chin-lung Hu got his first start of the season at 2nd base when Jeff Kent was given the day off. For his first 3 at-bats, he did a big pile of nothing. Then when the Dodgers needed him the most, he came through.

Going into the 9th inning tied at 2 apiece, the Padres called on closer Trevor Hoffman to keep things right where they were. Facing the bottom part of the order, Russell Martin was able to coax a leadoff walk. After Blake DeWitt got him over to 2nd, Hu stepped up and just managed to land one inside of the left field line and in front of Scott Hairston. Takashi Saito got the Pads in order to end the game, 3-2.

A day after getting creamed by Jake Peavy (I wonder if that substance on his hand had anything to do with it? Hmm.....), Chris Young was pretty good himself. Andre Ethier launched the 2nd homer of the season for the Dodgers in the 2nd inning for a 1-0 lead. Yes, that really is 2 home runs in 6 games. Ugh. Anyway, an Adrian Gonzalez double in the 4th tied it up.

Each team was able to tack on 1 more run, although Martin's throwing error helped their cause. The Dodgers had a chance in the 8th to take a lead when Rafael Furcal lead off with a single, stole 2nd, then advanced to 3rd with 1 out. But, Andruw Jones and Ethier could not plate him.

Both starting pitchers were really good. Derek Lowe went 6 innings and gave up 2 runs (1 earned), while Chris Young went 7 and 2. Scott Proctor and Joe Beimel got an out each, and Jonathan Broxton became the winner with 1.1 IP and no runs.

About the only annoying thing about today was that Juan Pierre not only started, but hit leadoff. The result? 0-4. If Joe Torre is reading this, I would like to say the following. Look, I know you like giving veterans a chance to play, but for the love of God, Pierre has done NOTHING this year to prove he should start over anybody else. Just put Ethier, Jones, and Matt Kemp in and leave it alone. Pierre has played his way out of contention in my mind.

Now that I have that off of my chest, the Dodgers deserve credit for getting 2 big wins in this series. They had to grind one out today, but when a big hit was absolutely needed to win, they got it from a rookie. I'll take that.

Esteban Loaiza will get his first start of the year tomorrow in Arizona. He will be up against... Dan Haren. Gee, I bet he's thankful for that.

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