Dodgers Now

The Times' Dodgers reporters give you all the news on the boys in blue

« Previous Post | Dodgers Now Home | Next Post »

Dodgers have a support issue with Hiroki Kuroda

June 14, 2011 |  7:07 am

Kuroda_640 Hiroki Kuroda is frustrated.

I have little actual evidence to base that comment on, other than I know Kuroda is very human. And if he’s not frustrated, then the only alternative is that he’s not a member of the human race.

Kuroda is very respectful, very careful in his translated comments, so this is not the guy who’s suddenly going off on a I-cannot-believe-these-slugs-can’t-score-me-few-runs rant.

But they can’t.

Kuroda suffered his fifth consecutive loss Monday night, making this a career-long losing streak.

It’s not like he’s been making a Cy Young statement the last five games, but he has mostly pitched well. The Dodgers, however, have given him only 1.57 runs of support per start. They can’t score for him.

"We don’t seem to be able to,’’ said manager Don Mattingly. "It seems there’s always a guy like that on every staff, somebody who doesn’t get runs.

"Hero seems like he’s been snakebit a little bit.’’

Monday night against the Reds, Kuroda surrendered two earned runs in his 6-1/3 innings, allowing six hits, no walks and striking out six. And, of course, lost.

He was hit hard in the first two starts of his losing streak, but in his last three games has a 2.55 ERA. Kuroda has made nine quality starts this season, not that his 5-8 record reflects it.

"I’ve probably been too careful,’’ Kuroda said. "Unfortunately, I don’t get much run support, so I don’t want to give up any runs.’’

Kuroda being too fine, making one mistake and losing, having no margin for error, has to leave him frustrated. Which he agreed to, kind of.

"You’re probably right,’’ he said. "That’s one of the reasons I’ve been too careful.’’

Too careful, and a tad too frustrated.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Hiroki Kuroda. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press