Dodgers' Ryu dominates Angels again
The Sports Xchange
By Joe Haakenson, The Sports Xchange
Dodgers' Ryu dominates Angels again
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- As the saying goes, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu faced the Los Angeles Angels only once before -- May 28 of last year -- and he threw a two-hit shutout.
Ryu repeated the feat Thursday night at Angel Stadium, throwing seven scoreless innings while allowing just two hits in the Dodgers' 7-0 win.
"I'm not sure, I just threw really good," Ryu said through an interpreter when asked about his success against the Angels. "Obviously last year it was a good game for me. I think I just had that feeling and tried to duplicate the same outcome."
The heart of the Angels' order -- center fielder Mike Trout, designated hitter Albert Pujols and left fielder Josh Hamilton -- went a combined 1-for-9 with two strikeouts against Ryu, who made 100 pitches in all.
"He did a nice job of changing speeds, using both sides of the plate and was able to keep them off-balance enough and use all his pitches," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He's a handful for anybody."
The victory was the third in a row for the Dodgers over the Angels, who won the first game of the four-game, home-and-home series. The Dodgers (66-50) increased their National League West lead to 3 1/2 games over the San Francisco Giants.
The Angels (67-47) fell three games behind the Oakland A's in the American League West, their largest deficit since July 24.
Ryu was sharp from the beginning, not allowing a hit until third baseman David Freese doubled with one out in the fifth. The Angels managed to hit the ball out of the infield just five times in Ryu's seven innings, Ryu getting 11 groundball outs, four strikeouts and one infield popup.
"He had a real good fastball-changeup combination going and he threw strikes," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "We didn't get too many good looks at him. They did a good job on the mound, really, all series against us."
Relievers Jamey Wright and Pedro Baez threw one scoreless inning apiece to complete the shutout.
The Dodgers finished with 13 hits, including three from designated hitter Hanley Ramirez, who broke a scoreless tie in the third inning with a two-run single. First baseman Adrian Gonzalez had two hits, including a two-run single in the eighth that made it 6-0 and sent half the crowd -- those wearing red -- streaming for the exits.
Dodgers right fielder Matt Kemp stayed hot, going 1-for-2 with a walk and a sacrifice fly, but was ejected from the game in the eighth inning after striking out and arguing with plate umpire Brian Knight.
Angels starter C.J. Wilson pitched better Thursday than he did in his previous five starts, but that isn't saying much. In those five starts, Wilson managed to last as long as five innings only once, and he never pitched more than five innings.
On Thursday, he went 5 2/3 innings and gave up four runs on six hits and four walks. Wilson, who is making $16 million this season, won only once in his past eight starts.
"There's definitely concern, and there's certainly been some head-scratching in the last seven or eight starts with C.J." Scioscia said. "But seeing how hard C.J. works, and seeing that it doesn't look like anything physical with him as far as an injury, we're very confident he's going to get back on that beam and do what we need him to do."
The Angels put together their only scoring threat against Ryu in the sixth inning. Trout reached on a fielder's choice and went to third on a double by Pujols.
Hamilton, still looking for his first home run of the season at Angel Stadium, launched a deep drive to left-center field. Dodgers center fielder Yasiel Puig made a long run, leaped and caught the ball a few inches below the top of the fence for the third out of the inning.
"His glove is sick, his hands are sick, everything he does out there on defense is sick," said Kemp, who had as good a view as anybody of Puig's catch.
"Obviously it was a big play for us," Mattingly said. "I don't know if it was going out of the ballpark but it's a lot of ground (he covered). The speed is what you see from that guy in center and it's really been important for us. He's really tooled up for that spot to be able to cover that ground."
NOTES: The Dodgers acquired RHP Roberto Hernandez from the Phillies for two players to be named and cash considerations. Hernandez was 6-8 with a 3.87 ERA in 23 games (20 starts) for Philadelphia. He is expected to make his Dodgers debut Friday vs. the Milwaukee Brewers, taking the place of RHP Josh Beckett. Beckett, who has a left hip impingement, had an MRI exam Thursday and is expected to be placed on the disabled list. ... The Angels acquired RHP Vinnie Pestano from the Indians for minor league RHP Michael Clevinger. Pestano was 0-1 with a 5.00 ERA in 13 games for the Indians, but he spent most of his time at Triple-A Columbus, going 2-4 with a 1.78 ERA in 32 games. The Angels assigned him to Triple-A Salt Lake.
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