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It's the wrong kind of second-half start as Dodgers find a different way to lose to Cardinals, falling 2-0

July 17, 2010 |  4:23 pm

Kuroda_300 Showing unwanted versatility, the Dodgers went from getting pounded the last two games by the Cardinals, to simply being edged.

Alas, the results were the same.

This time they wasted an excellent start by Hiroki Kuroda, the Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright proving just a shade better, that shade holding up for a 2-0 St. Louis victory on Saturday.

The Dodgers have now opened the second half all wrong, losing three games to the Cardinals, a team in search of its swagger.

Kuroda had struggled in his last three starts (14 earned runs in 14 innings), but perhaps benefiting from the additional rest with the All-Star break, was sharp on a sweltering afternoon in St. Louis.

The right-hander went six innings, holding the Cards to four hits while striking out eight and walking one.

St. Louis had scored 15 runs against the Dodgers in the first two games of the series.

The Cardinals scratched together one run off Kuroda in the fourth when Skip Schumaker’s bouncer got past the glove of diving first baseman James Loney for a run-scoring double.

The Dodgers, meanwhile, could do little against Wainwright (14-5). The Dodgers had scoring chances in the second and sixth, but each time hit into a double play.

Wainwright threw six shut-out innings, to lower his earned-run average to 2.02. He allowed five hits, struck out three and walked one.

The Dodgers played without left fielder Manny Ramirez (calf) and catcher Russell Martin (thumb). Neither are expected to be placed on the disabled list.

The Cardinals added their second run in the eighth off reliever Jeff Weaver on a Brendan Ryan sacrifice fly.

Loney hobbled off the field after popping out for the second out in the ninth, apparently cramping in the heat and humidity.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers starting pitcher Hiroki Kuroda went six innings against St. Louis on Saturday. Credit: Jeff Roberson / Associated Press