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Dodgers fall to Cardinals, 9-5, as Kuroda goes backward

April 14, 2011 | 10:15 pm

Dodgers5 Now if only the team could make you feel secure.

The media spotlight fell on the Dodgers organization Thursday, as the team announced its beefed-up security plans. Lots of additional police officers, new lights in the parking lots, new watchful eyes on those imbibing.

Alas, back on the field the Dodgers were roughed up by the St. Louis Cardinals all night long. That LAPD protection can only go so far.

The Cardinals racked up 16 hits on the way to an easy 9-5 victory, the Dodgers looking fairly ragged in the process.

Hiroki Kuroda, who had been just shy of brilliant in his first two starts, was out of whack from the second inning on. He left after five innings, giving up six runs on 10 hits and having thrown a career-high three wild pitches.

The Dodgers also committed two errors. Not their prettiest game.

It wasn't as though St. Louis left-hander Jaime Garcia was overpowering. He lasted only five innings but was able to limit the damage.

The loss dropped the Dodgers to under .500 (6-7) for the first time this season and marked their first three-game losing streak.

Kuroda entered the game 2-0 with a 1.72 earned-run average. He came within one out of a complete game in his last outing.

But everything Thursday seemed to be a struggle, whether it was a run-scoring infield hit by Matt Holliday, a line-drive home run by Albert Pujols or throwing pitches so far off the plate that Johnny Bench couldn’t have touched them.

The Dodgers had 11 hits, but only two went for extra bases. Jamey Carroll, now apparently entrenched at shortstop with Rafael Furcal out because of a broken thumb, led the L.A. attack with three hits, two runs and a run batted in. Matt Kemp added a solo home run in the ninth.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Hiroki Kuroda. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times