Dodgers have another power problem, surrendering four home runs among 19 hits in fourth straight loss
A team that is supposed to be built around pitching, the Dodgers have shown an alarming early propensity for giving up home runs. Lots and lots of home runs.
They gave up four more Friday night, naturally falling badly in the process, this time 11-2 to the Cardinals before what was announced as a crowd of 36,282.
It marked the Dodgers’ fourth consecutive loss. If the losing streak or the diminishing crowds weren’t cause enough for concern, then there’s this -- the loss dropped the Dodgers 5½ games behind the Rockies in the National League West standings.
That’s a fairly serious deficit 14 games into the season, which speaks less to the Dodgers’ middling 6-8 record and more to the Rockies' blazing 11-2 start and seven-game winning streak.
Of course, if the Dodgers are hoping to get on a run themselves, they’re going to have to do something about surrendering constant home runs.
They’ve given up 21 home runs on the season, equaled only by the 2-10 Boston Red Sox.
Lance Berkman hit two home runs off Jon Garland, and there was nothing cheap about either. Albert Pujols then added home runs off relievers Kenley Jansen and Blake Hawksworth. Safe to say, Pujols is over that slow start.
It was a night of firsts for Garland. Friday marked the first time he had ever pitched coming off the disabled list. Then in the second inning, he was called for the first balk of his career. The first in 2,030 2/3 innings.
Garland looked like he was just coming off the DL, giving up five runs on nine hits in four-plus innings.
The Cardinals, who had 16 hits in their victory over the Dodgers Thursday, upped the total to 19 hits Friday.
-- Steve Dilbeck
Photo: Dodgers starting pitcher Jon Garland waits to return to the mound as Cardinals right fielder Lance Berkman rounds third base after hitting a home run in the fourth inning Friday night at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press