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Greinke Pitches Dodgers To 10,000th Win

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[May 01, 2014]  MINNEAPOLIS  Not even the cold, wind, rain or his history at Target Field could slow down Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke.

The right-hander pitched six innings, allowing only one unearned run Wednesday in a 6-4 win over the Minnesota Twins that was the 10,000th victory in the history of the Dodgers.

It was Greinke's fifth win of the season and the 18th consecutive start in which he has allowed two runs or fewer, the longest such streak in the major leagues since 1914.

"Just keeps doing what he does every time out," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He was great again tonight."

Greinke entered the game 0-3 lifetime at Target Field, allowing 20 earned runs in 32 innings pitched (5.63 ERA). With temperatures in the upper 30s and wind-driven rain testing him all night, Greinke allowed seven hits and a walk while striking out six, using a changeup to do most of his damage.

"That's my best pitch every game it seems nowadays," Greinke said. "Using it to righties, they weren't chasing my slider at all."


Clinging to a 2-1 lead in the top of the seventh, Los Angeles broke the game open, stringing two singles and a double together to knock Twins starter Kyle Gibson from the game. Designated hitter Andre Ethier's two-out, bloop double down the left-field line scored Yasiel Puig from second base.

"I thought Gibson deserved better," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He made pitches, they put the bat on the ball and put them in the right places. I thought he pitched better than (his numbers)."

With runners on second and third, third baseman Juan Uribe poked a single down the first-base line on the first pitch from reliever Michael Tonkin, scoring two more to make it 5-1. That closed the book on Gibson, who allowed five runs (all earned) over 6 2/3 innings, walking three and striking out two.

"I felt pretty good," Gibson said. "My sinker was moving pretty good. I didn't really have my curveball going at all until a little bit later. Once again, three walks; that's gonna drive me crazy  if I keep doing that  by the end of the season."

With a chance to get back into the game in the bottom half of the inning, Twins third baseman Trevor Plouffe popped out to shortstop on a 3-0 pitch with the bases loaded to end the inning.

Puig added an RBI single in the eighth to make it 6-1.

One bright spot for the Twins was shortstop Eduardo Escobar, who had a career-high four hits. He also drove in two runs with a double in the second inning and a single in the ninth.

Minnesota brought the tying run to the plate with two outs in the ninth following Plouffe's two-run double, but right fielder Chris Colabello grounded out to short to end the game.

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Minnesota scored first, getting a single run on an RBI double off the wall in right field by Escobar, scoring designated hitter Josmil Pinto from second base. Escobar was thrown out at third trying to stretch the hit into a triple on a fine throw by Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp.

The Dodgers took the lead in the top of the third inning, getting back-to-back RBI singles to left by shortstop Hanley Ramirez and first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. But a sliding catch by left fielder Jason Kubel to end the inning may have saved at least two more runs from scoring.

Each team stranded runners in scoring position with a chance to build on their leads. The Dodgers loaded the bases in the third after scoring their runs, but Ethier flied out to end the threat.

NOTES: The Dodgers selected the contract of C Miguel Olivo from Triple-A Albuquerque and optioned C Tim Federowicz. ... The Dodgers transferred RHP Chad Billingsley from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL. He is recovering from Tommy John surgery performed in April 2013. ... Dodgers 1B Adrian Gonzalez doubled in the second inning, extending his hitting streak to five games. ... Twins 1B Joe Mauer singled in the first inning and has hit in all nine of his career games against the Dodgers. ... Dodgers C Drew Butera had two hits in his first game against his former team Wednesday. Butera was traded from the Twins to the Dodgers for a player to be named (LHP Miguel Sulbaran) last July 31. Butera entered the game as a .181 career hitter. ... The loss dropped the Twins to 1-8 in series openers this season. They are 11-4 in all other games. ... Twins CF Sam Fuld's double in the ninth inning extended his hitting streak to five games since joining the Twins on April 20. He has reached base in 10 of 11 games overall this season.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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