Dodgers top Rockies to avoid sweep

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[August 05, 2016]  DENVER -- After getting seven combined innings from their starters while losing the first two games of this series, the Los Angeles Dodgers badly needed a strong outing Thursday night from Kenta Maeda.

He wasn't as masterful as he was in his Coors Field debut in April, but Maeda pitched into the sixth and held the Colorado Rockies in check as the Dodgers won 4-2 to avoid being swept in the series.

"From where we were going into today, for Kenta to take the ball and do what he did tonight was huge," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Yasmani Grandal tripled home two runs with two outs in the fifth when the Dodgers scored three runs against Rockies starter Tyler Chatwood and took a 4-2 lead. Corey Seager began the scoring in that inning when he hit his 19th home run, tying the record Hanley Ramirez set in 2013 for a Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop.

"I never really hit this many," Seager said. "It's one of those things -- who knows what it is? It's happening."

Maeda (10-7) gave up two runs and four hits in 5 2/3 innings with no walks and five strikeouts. But he hit two batters and threw a wild pitch in his 96-pitch outing as he lacked the sharpness he had in his Coors Field debut April 23 when he limited the Rockies to three hits in 6 1/3 scoreless innings with one walk and eight strikeouts.

Maeda's one mistake came in the fourth, when David Dahl hit a two-run homer after Nolan Arenado led off with a single and took second on a wild pitch. Maeda threw a 90 mph fastball down the middle with the count 2-1, and Dahl drove the ball over the wall in center. It was his third homer and gave him a 10-game hitting streak to start his career, the second-longest in Rockies history.

Dahl's home run came on the Rockies' lone at-bat with a runner in scoring position. Pedro Baez, Joe Blanton and Kenley Jansen worked the final 3 1/3 innings with Jansen earning his 32nd save in 36 opportunities. They set down the final seven Rockies batters and 10 of the last 11 after Maeda's workday ended when he gave up a single to Mark Reynolds.

Roberts said he thought about letting Maeda try to finish the sixth but balanced that with Baez being fresh after three days off and Maeda pitching at altitude.

"I thought he did more than we needed," Roberts said. "I wanted him to get out of this game feeling pretty good about himself."

The loss was just the third in 14 games for the Rockies, who are 14-6 since the All-Star break and whose six-game winning streak at Coors Field ended. Colorado is three games behind the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals in the race for the second National League wild-card spot, two games back of the New York Mets and tied with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

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The Dodgers won for just the second time in five games, leaving them 9-8 since the break. They trail San Francisco by two games in the National League West and hold a three-game lead over the Cardinals in the wild-card race.

Chatwood (10-7), who won his past two starts, allowed four runs on nine hits and three walks in six innings with six strikeouts in his 105-pitch outing. The Dodgers hit for the cycle in the fifth when they struck for three runs and took a 4-2 lead.

Seager tied the game at 2 with his homer. Justin Turner followed with a double high off the center field wall. He took third on Adrian Gonzalez's two-out infield single, and both runners scored on Yasmani Grandal's first triple of the season. Both Seager and Grandal hit changeups.

"It was the pitch I wanted, I just didn't execute it," Chatwood said. "I just left it up, and they didn't miss it. They both barreled it, and there's three runs right there. I got the first two guys out that inning on it. It was good tonight. I just left two of them up, and they didn't miss it."

Chatwood gave up a run in the fourth on Howie Kendrick's one-out single. He walked Josh Reddick to open the inning. Gonzalez followed with a single, beating a shift by rolling a ball into right field. That perfectly placed hit sent Reddick to third. Chatwood struck out Grandal, but Kendrick singled through the hole at shortstop.

NOTES: Rockies LF Daniel Descalso suffered a left shoulder contusion when he hit the wall catching a ball in the third and was replaced in the fourth. ... The Dodgers recalled LHP Grant Dayton from Oklahoma City and optioned RHP Brock Stewart to the Triple-A club. ... Rockies SS Trevor Story underwent successful surgery to repair the torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left thumb. ... Rockies RF Carlos Gonzalez, who sprained his left ankle Wednesday and had to leave the game, did not play but prepared to pinch hit and said he would be in the lineup Friday... Rockies RHP Chad Qualls, on the disabled list since July 16 due to colitis, threw 21 pitches in his second bullpen session. ... LHP Rich Hill (left middle finger blister) is tentatively scheduled to start Sunday against Boston in his Dodgers debut. Los Angeles hadn't named a starter for Saturday, but manager Dave Roberts said RHP Brandon McCarthy, who would be lined up for that day, will get extra rest and will start Monday.

[ 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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