By Jon Weisman
There are more questions about Brandon McCarthy, but at least the Dodgers had multiple answers for their two-game losing streak.
Backed by a 17-hit offense, and with Julio Urías providing 2 2/3 innings of meaningful relief, Los Angeles overcame McCarthy’s latest early exit for an 8-4 victory over Pittsburgh.
For the third straight start, McCarthy walked five — after having never done so once in his MLB career before this month. He struggled with mechanics, command and control, and ultimately, was pulled after 1 2/3 innings. Later, it was announced he was suffering from right hip stiffness, as Ken Gurnick of MLB.com notes.
Entering a game in the middle of an inning for the first time in his career, in relief of Josh Fields with two out in the top of the third, Urías kept the Pirates off shore, allowing six baserunners but no runs. Joe Blanton stranded two Urías runners with a ground ball to end the top of the sixth.
Urías won his second game of a week in which he threw 7 2/3 innings and allowed 13 baserunners but only one earned run.
In the meantime, the Dodgers rallied from deficits of 1-0 and 3-1 by scoring single runs in the first four innings and twice each in the fifth and sixth. For all their baserunners, they benefited from two pivotal replay reviews on plays that didn’t involve hits.
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- In the bottom of the third inning, a potential inning-ending double play grounder by Joc Pederson was overturned because second baseman Adam Frazier had stepped past second base before catching the feed from shortstop Jordy Mercer. That left Adrián González safe at second, and González would tie the game 3-3 moments later on a double error by Pirates third baseman Jung Ho Kang.
- In the bottom of the fifth inning, Urías came to bat with runners at the corners and one out. With practically everyone in the ballpark thinking “Squeeze,” Urías laid the bunt down. Kendrick raced home and was called out, but replay revealed he got his hand on home plate before the tag.
Pederson and Corey Seager each had three hits, with Pederson missing the triple to complete a cycle. The Dodgers had 29 hits in the first 22 hours of this series, batting .371.
Chase Utley and Howie Kendrick each hit their 20th doubles of the year today, giving the Dodgers six players at that level.
On the flip side, the Dodgers walked 11 batters in a game for the first time since May 25, 2009. Dodger pitchers hadn’t walked 11 in a home game since April 20, 1999. Kenley Jansen got the save on the Dodgers’ 201st pitch of the game.
San Francisco hosts Baltimore tonight, trying to avoid falling into a tie for first place in the National League West with Los Angeles.