Not so much fun this time: Giants end Dodgers' win streak, 8-5
All that rare buzz at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday generated by the Clayton Kershaw-Tim Lincecum showdown evaporated Wednesday into a slow, uninspiring 8-5 loss to the Giants before an announced crowd of 32,334.
The carryover effect was lacking from the get-go, the Giants jumping on Dana Eveland for three runs in the first and never relinquishing the lead.
The loss ended the Dodgers’ four-game winning streak and dropped them back to the .500 mark (77-77), with seven games to go. Kershaw’s victory Tuesday had lifted them over .500 for the first time since April 29.
But momentum was a no-show Wednesday. About the only excitement the Dodgers offered came from the usual source, Matt Kemp hitting a rain-maker, three-run homer in the fourth that briefly brought the Dodgers to within 5-4.
For Kemp, the home run continued his remarkable turnabout from last year’s disappointing season. This season, however, he has begun to hear "MVP" chants from the Dodger Stadium crowd.
Kemp now has 35 homers (tied for second in the National League), leads the league with 116 RBIs and 105 runs, has 40 stolen bases (second) and is hitting .321 (third). Otherwise, he just can’t find his stroke.
The night was probably most disappointing for Eveland, a journeyman left-hander who had labored at triple-A Albuquerque all season until a September call-up. Then he won his first two games – including holding the Giants scoreless for seven innings on three hits in San Francisco on Sept. 10 – and was at least in the conversation about a possible spot in next season’s rotation.
But Wednesday marked his second consecutive poor start. He lasted only four innings against the Giants, surrendering five runs and six hits while walking three. In his previous start, the Pirates got to him for four runs and eight hits in five innings.
The Dodgers managed 12 hits, but their lone rally came in the fifth. Ryan Vogelsong (12-7) wasn’t exactly blowing them away, but he proved effective enough. He gave up four runs in five innings on nine hits.
Six San Francisco relievers shut down the Dodgers out the rest of the way, until James Loney singled in a run off Brian Wilson in the ninth.
The Dodgers will play their final home game of the season Thursday night in their series finale against the Giants.
-- Steve Dilbeck
Photo: Dodgers shortstop Dee Gordon, left, and left fielder Juan Rivera can't make a catch on a single by San Francisco's Brett Pill during the fifth inning of the Dodgers' 8-5 loss Wednesday. Credit: Harry How / Getty Images