Dodgers complete road sweep of Giants behind arm — and bat — of Julio Urías

Los Angeles Dodgers' Julio Urias pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning.
Dodgers starting pitcher Julio Urías delivers against the San Francisco Giants on Sunday.
(Jeff Chiu / Associated Press)

The Dodgers opened up an 11-0 lead against the Giants and held on for the 11-5 victory to complete statement series against their NL West rival.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts lined up this weekend’s rotation like he might for a crucial September series, and it paid off with consecutive gems by Trevor Bauer and Walker Buehler, who surrendered a single earned run between the two of them while both going north of 100 pitches.

On Sunday, Julio Urías put the final, definitive stamp on the series with a 10-strikeout, six-inning outing in an 11-5 Los Angeles victory. Urías did not allow a base runner until Mike Tauchman’s spinning infield single in the sixth inning. Urías also had a big day at the plate, driving in three runs, including a two-out, two-run double in the second inning.

The Dodgers, after an off day tomorrow, head to Houston in sole possession of second place in the NL West, one game behind the Padres, who like the Dodgers have won nine of their last 10 games.

Dennis Santana loads bases in the ninth, but escapes unscathed to close out 11-5 win

Highlights from the Dodgers’ 11-5 win over the San Francisco Giants on Sunday.

Dodgers: José Alvarez now on the hill for the Giants. Muncy grounds out to first. Smith strikes out swinging. Beaty grounds out to first.

Giants: Dennis Santana in to close for the Dodgers. Casali walks. Tauchman walks on four pitches, which gets Blake Treinen stirring in the bullpen. Pinch hitter Alex Dickerson lines out to Lux. Slater flies out to left. Solano beats out an infield hit to third to load the bases. Yastrzemski grounded out to second to end it.

End of ninth: Dodgers 11, Giants 5

PGA Championship: Mickelson -6 (F), Koepka -4 (F), Oousthuizen -4 (F)


Hitless two innings ago, the Giants close 11-run deficit to six-run deficit

Dodgers: Nick Tropeano, who threw 34 pitches last night, is in for the Giants. Sheldon Neuse, who entered the game the previous inning, grounded out to the pitcher. Lux grounded out into the shift. Price rolls out to the pitcher.

Giants: Edwin Uceta on the mound for the Dodgers. Tauchman walks. Pinch-hitter Steven Duggar rips a double to right. Runners at second and third. Slater works a nine-pitch to load the bases. (There’s a very amusing ‘Beat L.A.’ chant audible in the telecast.) Solano hits a sacrifice fly to right that is both an adventure for Beaty and the producer of the third run for the Giants.

Yastrzemski doubles into the rightfield corner to make 11-5, and that’s it for Uceta. Phil Bickford now in the game.

Ruf grounds out to short. Crawford is hit on the foot. Dubón strikes out swinging.

End of eighth: Dodgers 11, Giants 5

Lakers-Suns: 99-90 Suns, FINAL

LeBron James and Anthony Davis struggled with their shooting as Devin Booker and the Suns overcame an injury to Chris Paul to defeat the Lakers 99-90.

May 23, 2021

PGA Championship: Mickelson -7 (16), Koepka -4 (16), Oousthuizen -4 (17)


Urías done for the day (10 K’s); Price pitches scoreless inning

Dodgers: Beaty flies out to left. Tsutsugo strikes out looking. Austin Barnes doubled on a popup that Crawford misjudged in the sun. Peters grounds out to shortstop.

Giants: Urías done for the day. David Price in. Urías’s final stats: 6 IP, two runs, three hits, 10 K’s, no walks, 89 pitches.

Ruf strikes out looking. Crawford reaches on infield single. Dubón pops out to first. Casali grounds out to short.

End of sixth: Dodgers 11, Giants 2

Lakers-Suns: 99-90 Suns, FINAL

PGA Championship: Mickelson -6 (14), Oousthuizen -3 (14)


After no-call on check swing, Urías’s perfect game bid ends on infield single

Dodgers: Lux strikes out looking. Turner flies out to the track in center; has hit the ball on the screws his last two plate appearances. Muncy walks. Smith pops to center.

Giants: Casali strikes out looking.

And the perfect game bid is over. Tauchman reaches on a spinner that Lux could not corral with his bare hand. (Orel Hersisher pointing out Tauchman probably went around on an earlier check swing that would have been strike three).

Pinch hitter Caleb Baragar struck out. Slater drills two-run homer to left. Solano singles to center for third Giants hit of the inning. Yastrzemski strikes out swinging. Jumbo Jacks all around.

End of sixth: Dodgers 11, Giants 2

Lakers-Suns: 99-87 Suns, 1:39 left in the fourth quarter

PGA Championship: Mickelson -7 (13), Oousthuizen -3 (14)


It’s starting to get interesting; Urías extends perfect run through five

Dodgers: Two quick outs by Tustsugo and Peters. Urías, 2-for-2 with three RBIs already, grounds out to first for the Giants’ first 1-2-3 inning of the afternoon.

Giants: Ruf flies out to center (Urías has gotten an 0-2 count on eight of the first 13 hitters, per Dodgers broadcasters). Crawford hits a hard line drive to right, which is pulled in by Peters. Dubón lines out to Lux, who makes a nice sprawling catch. Urías (33 pitches) perfect through five. Giants have six hits off Dodgers starters over 18.1 innings in the series.

End of fifth: Dodgers 11, Giants 0

Lakers-Suns: 86-77 Suns, 9:01 left in the fourth quarter

PGA Championship: Mickelson -8 (11), Oousthuizen -5 (12)


Dodgers extend lead on Muncy solo jack; Urías still perfect through four

Dodgers: Muncy goes yard to nearly the same spot that Lux hit his grand slam. He is the first Dodger to reach double digits in homers this season. 11-0.

Smith flies to right. Beaty flies to center. Taylor thrown out on nice barehanded pickup and throw by Crawford.

Giants: Slater strikes out on three pitches. Solano strikes out swinging. Yastrzemski K’s looking. Urías (45 pitches, seven strikeouts) perfect through four.

End of fourth: Dodgers 11, Giants 0

Lakers-Suns: 74-66 Suns, 1;55 left in the third quarter

PGA Championship: Mickelson -8 (11), Koepka -4 (11), Oousthuizen -4 (11)


Q&A with Joe Sheehan: Is the NL West a three-team race? Is Trevor Bauer’s sword cool?

Trevor Bauer holds his right hand up to cup his ear.
Trevor Bauer reacts to fans booing him as he leaves the game against the San Francisco Giants on Friday night.
(Thearon W. Henderson / Getty Images)

Not a lot of drama, it would appear, left in this one — other than the Jack in the Box promo and Urías’ perfecto. Seems like a good time for another Q&A.

On May 17, the Joe Sheehan Baseball Newsletter, one of the first paid sports newsletters, celebrated its 11th anniversary covering the game. Its eponymous founder is one of the sport’s most astute and candid observers — and the most likely person I know who will stick out an 18-inning Padres-Rockies night game. A USC grad, Joe was a founding member of Baseball Prospectus, and for 15 years was a colleague of mine at a niche sports weekly based in New York City.

You can subscribe to his newsletter here.

Joe was gracious enough to answer a few Dodger-related questions for the Live Blog.

1. You buying that the NL West is a three-team race?

Still no. The Giants’ pitching depth has always been the concern, a point highlighted by them unearthing Scott Kazmir for a start just a quarter of the way through the season. There are real positives here, like the work they’ve done with Kevin Gausman and the play by a finally healthy Buster Posey. You can see them chasing a wild-card slot. They’re just not a real threat to the Dodgers over 162.

2. You watch a lot of Dodger games. What has been your biggest takeaway about the team thus far?

Just how much their depth has been tested by injuries. There was a stretch of games where it seemed like all the high-leverage relief innings were being pitched by extras pulled off the Sony lot. Clay Bellinger begat Zach McInstry begat Luke Raley begat D.J. Peters, and I am pretty sure the next name on that list is Mike Davis. With all that, and with miserable luck in those idiotic ghost-runner games, they’re still on pace to win 99 games.

3. The Bauer sword, or the one-eyed pitches?

The sword is fun! With that and Fernando Rodney’s arrow, you have the makings of quite the arsenal.

I think what gets lost in “let the kids play” is that it can often mean “let the kids we like play.” Bauer is unpopular in many quarters, and he’s earned that dislike, but the sword is of a piece with the way we want players to express themselves in 2021.

Bonus question: Who do you like in Suns-Lakers?

I don’t watch much soccer, Chris, sorry.


Urías three RBI’s, Lux’s grand slam lift Dodgers to 10-0 lead

Dodgers: Turner grounds out to short. Muncy walks on a 3-2 pitch. Smith grounds a single up the middle to put runners at the corners. Beaty finds a hole in the right side and the Dodgers again have runners at first and third. 4-0. Eight of the first 14 batters have reached. Taylor bloops one into short right to bring home a fifth run. Tsutsugo makes an out, advancing the two runners. The Giants walk Peters, setting up.... a bases-loaded infield single by Shohei Urías, who has two hits and three RBIs on the afternoon.

Lux just went yard to center for his second grand slam this month to give the Dodgers a 10-0 lead. Anthony DeSclafani—who entered the day having allowed one or fewer runs in six of his first nine starts—is done for the day. Sam Selman in now the Giants.

Turner lines to center and is robbed by a diving Slater.

Giants: Curt Casali popped out to second on the first pitch. Mike Tauchman strikes out looking. Selman strikes out looking. Urías (33 pitches) perfect through three.

End of third: Dodgers 10, Giants 0

Lakers-Suns: 67-53 Suns, 7:40 left in the third quarter

PGA Championship: Mickelson -8 (10), Koepka -4 (10), Oousthuizen (-4)


Q&A with Sam Farmer: Can Phil Mickelson pull off a PGA Championship victory?

Phil Mickelson watches his tee shot on the second hole during the third round of the PGA Championship on May 22, 2021.
(Associated Press)

As this posts, Phil Mickelson is holding a one-shot lead in the PGA Championship. Times golf writer Sam Farmer—he’s an NFL Hall of Fame writer at night—was gracious enough to join for a few questions from his Pasadena home.

1. What’s the vibe in the Farmer family room?

Unusually calm. My son and his girlfriend just left to return to Phoenix with their two dogs, Bear and Stella. My wife and I dogsat for the past week, meaning we had four dogs careening around the house. It was, in a word, lively. Now, our dogs are zonked and not really into the PGA Championship drama.

I am, though. This is cool.

It’s a little difficult to type, as I’m four days removed from surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in the inside of my right elbow. An identical surgery to the one Ben Roethlisberger had last year. He hurt his arm throwing. My breaking point came, of all places, on the No. 2 tee box at Augusta. I won the annual media lottery, allowing me to play the course the day after the Masters. So it was a cruel hoax that the injury happened so early in my round.

I got an elbow strap at the turn and loaded up on Aleve, so I was able to grimace through some swings on the back. When I made par on 16, I called it a day. I did putt on all the greens, though. Those were ridiculous. Like a funhouse.

This clunky cast and sling makes it comically difficult to type. I’m reminded of Joan Cusack in “Sixteen Candles,” with that halo brace, desperately trying (and failing) to drink out of the water fountain. That’s how typing feels.

2. On Thursday morning, did it cross your mind that you might be writing about Phil Mickelson on Sunday?

In recent years I’ve covered golf’s four major championships, and this is the first major I’ve missed in three years. So I didn’t expect to be writing about the tournament, and I’m especially surprised I’m writing about Phil Mickelson. I guess I did write about him on Sunday of the PGA at Harding Park last fall, but that’s only because he did a turn in the CBS broadcast booth with Jim Nantz and Nick Faldo, and he was terrific.

I called Jim after Saturday’s round when he was driving back to the hotel, and we had a long conversation about Mickelson. They’re good friends and their wives are close. We were both talking about how amazing it was that he was leading after three rounds, something that hadn’t happened since a 59-year-old Tom Watson led the British Open at Turnberry in 2009 before losing in a playoff to Stewart Cink. Jim Nantz was a spectator on that day, on a busman’s holiday walking with the gallery.

At this point, I’d planned to write a Mickelson story for Monday’s paper, regardless if he won or lost. So I’d already sent a text to Tom Brady, who played with him in that made-for-TV match last year with Peyton Manning and Tiger Woods. Just three months ago, Brady became the oldest player ever to play in a Super Bowl. He returned my text with his thoughts about Mickelson, so my reporting was underway. I wound up using the Brady text and a Nantz comment in a story that ran online Sunday morning, setting up the final round.

3. Your real-time assessment of Phil so far today?

Through eight holes, Mickelson is at minus-7 for the tournament and his round today as been as up and down as those sand dunes – bogey, birdie, bogey, par, birdie, bogey, birdie. The crowd is into it, and now Phil has widened his lead over Brooks Koepka and Louis Oosthuizen back to two shots.

If there’s a signature moment of the day, and perhaps the tournament, it was Mickelson’s blast out of the waste bunker on the par-3 fifth hole, when he holed out for birdie from 50 feet. The gallery went wild, as he’s clearly the sentimental favorite out there. That image of Mickelson with wedge raised above his head, pumping his left fist, is so classic.

CBS played the replay to the strains of Neil Young’s “Old Man” – “Old man look at my life, I’m a lot like you were” – and the emotions are starting to well. Thing is, there aren’t a lot of people like Mickelson, even among the rarefied air of golf greats. His ability to stay healthy all these years is just remarkable. This has gotten to be a young man’s/woman’s game with all the emphasis on length and overpowering courses. We’ve seen a lot of bodies break down. Not Phil’s, not so far. In fact, he’s tan and in-shape now, looks a lot better than he did at other points in his career.

He has had a lot of near-miss putts so far, ones where he needed one more half-rotation to drop it in the cup. Just a few more dimples.

It’s really windy out there. And after the fifth hole, the players spend the next nine hitting into the teeth of the wind. Control is going to be paramount. That’s not U.S. Open rough, but it looks pretty nasty. A lot of tee shots just kind of disappear into it.

4. What the last performance you witnessed that evoked this same sense of wonder?

I can’t help but think of Tiger in the 2019 Masters. Brooks Koepka was right on Tiger’s heels in that one, too. Just has that historic feel.

I watched a lot of that historic finish from the members grill at Augusta National. Here’s how I described the scene at the time:

As Tiger made his breathtaking finish, and thousands of people clustered around the 17th and 18th holes to witness history, I retired to watch from the members grill at Augusta National, which is maybe 100 steps from the 18th green. Unlike other tournaments, our media credentials don’t get us inside the ropes, but they do grant us access to the grill, the men’s locker room and elsewhere.

So the grill was filled with about 100 people both sitting and standing, and the energy was crackling among the green-jacketed members of the club and their families, just-finished golfers and theirs, and maybe four or five reporters quietly working the room. Golfer Justin Thomas and his friends were in there, as were Rickie Fowler and his fiancee.

Thomas was coming off a hole-in-one in his final round, had his wallet out and was explaining to the bartender that he wanted to buy drinks for everyone in the place, as is custom after an ace. I was surprised because I didn’t think that tradition stood for a PGA Tour pro playing in a tournament, and the bartender seemed a little taken aback too, because Thomas had to politely explain it to him a couple of times. Maybe that confusion was due to the excitement of the moment, because the anticipation was building and history was in the making.

When it became clear that Woods was going to win his first major championship in 11 years, reviving a career many people wrote off as dead, it also became clear that his family — his mom, two kids, and girlfriend — would need to be in position to greet him coming off the 18th green.

They watched the final round from the grill room too, at a table beneath one of the TVs. Security came and whisked them away down the stretch, with the only remnants at the table being a couple of glass teapots and a handful of Jolly Rancher wrappers. Everyone gave them appropriate space to absorb the moment.


Urias helps own cause with booming two-run double; Dodgers up 3-0

Dodgers: Will Smith singled to right. Matt Beaty walked. Chris Taylor sent Yastrzemski to the track in right, moving Smith to third. Yoshi Tsutsugo, making his first start of the series, lined a single to right to drive in Smith. DJ Peters struck out swinging. Urías smokes a one-hopper off the wall in right to drive in two. Lux strikes out looking.

Giants: Darin Ruf flew out to right. Brandon Crawford strikes out swinging. Mauricio Dubón flies weakly to right. Urías has thrown 24 pitches through two perfect innings.

End of second: Dodgers 3, Giants 0

Lakers-Suns: 53-45 Suns, halftime

PGA Championship: Mickelson -7 (8), Koepka -5 (8), Oosthuizen -5 (8)


Dodgers and Giants scoreless through one

Dodgers: Gavin Lux, the new leadoff hitter after Mookie Betts was scratched with a shoulder injury, singled. Justin Turner—who flipped places with Max Muncy in the new lineup—struck out swinging and Lux was thrown out attempting to steal. Muncy flew out to left.

Giants: Austin Slater grounded out to Turner. Donovan Solano flew out to right. Mike Yastrzemski struck out looking.

End of first: Dodgers 0, Giants 0

Lakers-Suns: 38-31 Suns, 8:44 left in the second quarter

PGA Championship: Mickelson -7 (7), Koepka -5 (7), Oosthuizen -5 (8)


Mookie Betts scratched from Dodgers’ lineup with left shoulder soreness

SAN FRANCISCO — Mookie Betts was scratched from the Dodgers’ lineup Sunday less than an hour before first pitch against the Giants. The Dodgers said Betts is dealing with left shoulder soreness.

Betts didn’t play Saturday, but Dodgers manager Dave Roberts didn’t mention an injury when asked about Betts’ absence from the lineup. Instead, he called it a “spa day” for the star right fielder. Basically, a day off to reset after playing in 16 straight games, including eight days in a row.

Betts missed four games in early April with a lower back injury. He’s batting .258 with an .818 OPS, both significant dropoffs from last season, and admitted that the injury affected him at the plate. But the shoulder issue wasn’t disclosed until Sunday.

Without Betts, DJ Peters will start in right field and Gavin Lux will lead off.

Here’s the new lineup:

Gavin Lux SS
Justin Turner 3B
Max Muncy 2B
Will Smith C
Matt Beaty 1B
Chris Taylor CF
Yoshi Tsutsugo LF
DJ Peters RF
Julio Urías P


Q&A with the Times’ Dan Woike: Live from Phoenix and Lakers-Suns

Chris Paul #3 and LeBron James #23, longtime friends and rivals, will be facing off in the postseason for the first time.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MARCH 02: Chris Paul #3 of the Phoenix Suns and LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers shake hands after a 114-104 Suns win at Staples Center on March 02, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE.
(Harry How/Getty Images)

The Lakers-Suns game tipped at 12:41, a little less than a half hour before the scheduled Dodgers-Giants first pitch. As promised, the Live Blog will be in touch with Lakers’ beat writer Dan Woike throughout the afternoon. Dan, who is on-site at Talking Stick Resort Arena, was kind enough to do a lightning round for readers.

1. What’s the vibe in The Stick?*

Hey everyone, I’m masked and in Arizona, sitting about halfway up at center court. There’s a nice energy in the building as the pregame clock ticks down, people milling around in jerseys. A lot of Laker fans in Phoenix (I had a few on my flight down yesterday). It’s been awhile for the Suns to have a playoff game so people are really excited around town. We’ll see how long that lasts.

2. What’s it like covering your first road game in front of fans in 14 months?

It’s weird being back on the road, something that was such a big part of my life but then came to such a violent stop. Between this and the Hall of Fame last week, though, it’s amazing how quickly people bounce back into normal routines. Gives me hope for society as we come out of this. Between today and last week at Staples Center, it’s great to be back covering games with atmosphere (and real stakes).

3. Because this is a Dodgers blog.... Is the NL West still a three-team race?

I was led to believe the Dodgers were the best team ever—at least that’s what Dylan Hernandez has been telling me (EDITOR’S NOTE: actually the guilty party is this guy). My best guess is that the Dodgers and Padres will eventually distance themselves, but I did enjoy seeing Scott Kazmir pitch yesterday. He was on the Angels when I first started covering baseball. Nice guy, too hittable. Welcome back.

You can follow Dan this afternoon and for eternity @DanWoikeSports.


Dodgers place Jimmy Nelson on injured list, recall Phil Bickford

SAN FRANCISCO — The Dodgers placed right-hander Jimmy Nelson on the 10-day injured list Sunday minutes before taking the field against the Giants. Right-hander Phil Bickford was recalled from triple-A Oklahoma City to replace Nelson in the bullpen.

Nelson has been a bright spot in the Dodgers’ bullpen as a multi-inning reliever used every few days. He’s been charged with six runs, five earned, in 18 2/3 innings across 16 appearances behind an electric arsenal that made him one of the top starting pitchers in the majors in 2017 before injuries derailed his career.

Nelson has dealt with shoulder, elbow and back injuries since the end of the 2017 season. Last year, after signing with the Dodgers, he underwent back surgery in July, ending his season before it began.

Bickford, 25, pitched an inning for the Milwaukee Brewers before he was designated for assignment. The Dodgers claimed Bickford — an Oaks Christian and Cal State Fullerton product — at the beginning of the month.


Mookie Betts back in Dodgers’ lineup as they look to sweep Giants

SAN FRANCISCO — Mookie Betts is back in the Dodgers’ lineup Sunday as expected as they look to complete a three-game sweep of the Giants at Oracle Park.

Betts will play right field and bat leadoff. Albert Pujols, in the lineup for the series’ first two games, won’t start Sunday. Matt Beaty will play first base instead and hit seventh. Yoshi Tsutsugo will make his first start of the series in left field, batting eighth against right-hander Anthony DeSclafani.

Julio Urías will take the mound for the Dodgers after Trevor Bauer and Walker Buehler combined to give up two runs (one earned) over 13 1/3 innings in their two wins over the Giants on Friday and Saturday.

The clubs begin Sunday with the same 28-18 record, one game behind the first-place Padres, who own the best record in the majors.

DODGERS (28-18)
Mookie Betts RF
Max Muncy 2B
Justin Turner 3B
Will Smith C
Gavin Lux SS
Chris Taylor CF
Matt Beaty 1B
Yoshi Tsutsugo LF
Julio Urías P

GIANTS (28-18)
Austin Slater CF
Donovan Solano 2B
Mike Yastrzemski RF
Darin Ruf 1B
Brandon Crawford SS
Mauricio Dubón 3B
Curt Casali C
Mike Tauchman LF
Anthony DeSclafani P


“Fernandomania at 40” featured in lengthy Fox 11 feature

Speaking of emergency starters (see previous post), perhaps you’re familiar with the story of the Dodgers’ 1981 Opening Day emergency starter, Fernando Valenzuela, who stepped in for a hobbled Jerry Reuss (leg injury) and shut out the Astros, 2-0.

That would launch Fernandomania and, 40 years later, the Times docu-series “Fernandomania at 40” that tells the story of a year like no other in Dodgers history. Yesterday, L.A.’s Fox 11 did a lengthy segment on the docu-series that includes highlights from the first four episodes and very good interviews with Reuss and the series’ inimitable narrator, Times columnist and podcast host Gustavo Arellano.

The segment comes on the heels of last week’s launch of Episode 4, which details the 20-year cold war between Los Angeles’ Mexican community and the Dodgers and the team’s quest to find a “Mexican Sandy Koufax” that might bridge the divide.

You can watch the Fox 11 segment here.

And Episode 4 of Fernandomania at 40 here.


Dodgers-Giants just one part of big afternoon in L.A. sports

Howdy,* I’m Chris Stone, the Times Executive Sports Editor, and I’m today’s Live Blog emergency starter in place of the vacationing Houston Mitchell. I’ll be joined by Jorge Castillo, who’s on-site in San Francisco, and a special fourth-inning guest who has some interesting insights into the Dodgers undulating start.

Today the Dodgers will be going head-to-head not only with the Giants, but also Game 1 of Lakers-Suns (12:30 PST start) and the PGA Championship, in which San Diego native Phil Mickelson will attempt to put a bow on an improbable major championship run. We’ll drop in the occasional update from our Times colleagues at those events. You can—and should—follow Dan Woike (on-site in Phoenix) and Brad Turner for Lakers coverage, and Sam Farmer for the latest from the PGA. They’re really good Twitter follows even when nothing is going on.

We’ll be back later this morning and throughout the afternoon for more.

*The ‘Howdy’ thing. It’s Houston’s greeting at the start of his Dodgers Dugout newsletter. Trying to maintain some of his spirit in his absence.


Walker Buehler’s strong start helps Dodgers beat Giants, pull even in standings

Highlights from the Dodgers’ 6-3 win over the San Francisco Giants on Saturday.

SAN FRANCISCO — The Dodgers’ 2021 season, 46 games old after Saturday’s 6-3 win over the San Francisco Giants, can be divided into three distinct chapters.

In the first, they bulldozed opponents to a major league-best 12-3 record. Then the wheels came off in the second. They lost 15 of 20 as the injuries piled up, the offense disappeared and the defense floundered, They fell to a game over .500. The third resembles the first. They’re winning again. They’re taken six straight games and 10 of 11 to catch the Giants in the National League West standings.

All along, through the ups and downs, the starting pitching hasn’t budged. The Dodgers (28-18) boast perhaps the best rotation in the majors. It ranks third in the major leagues in earned-run average and strikeout rate. Most importantly, no group pitches deeper into games.

“It’s certainly the root of all the success,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Read more >>>


Buster Posey hits two-run home run to cut into the Dodgers’ lead

Giants catcher Buster Posey hit a two-run home run off Dodgers reliever Alex Vesia to make it 6-3 Dodgers in the eighth inning. It was Posey’s ninth home run of the season.

Vesia started the inning in relief of Dodgers starter Walker Buehler, who allowed six hits, one earned run a walk and struck out five over seven innings.

After the home run, Vesia got out of the inning by striking out Brandon Crawford and getting Brandon Belt to fly out behind third.

End of eighth: Dodgers 6, Giants 3


Albert Pujols and Austin Barnes drive in more runs for the Dodgers

Albert Pujols and Austin Barnes each drove in runs off Giants reliever Jose Alvarez to give the Dodgers a 6-1 lead in the eighth inning.

Pujols singled to left to drive in Justin Turner from third and Austin Barnes plated Max Muncy on a sacrifice bunt to first.

An error by Giants center fielder Steven Duggar on what appeared to be a catchable ball hit by Turner allowed the Dodgers veteran to reach second to lead off the inning. Muncy then singled on a drive to left to move Turner to third.

Meanwhile, Pujols gave one lucky kid his bat after he was back in the dugout.


Matt Beaty and DJ Peters drive in runs; Giants get on the scoreboard

DJ Peters points skyward after hitting a double against the San Francisco Giants during the fifth inning.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

Matt Beaty and DJ Peters drove in runs off reliever Nick Tropeano before the Giants plated a run in the bottom half of the inning to make it 4-1 Dodgers.

Beaty drove in Gavin Lux on a liner into the right-field corner that bounced off the wall past Mike Yastrzemski, helping Beaty reach third. On the next at-bat, Peters then singled to left to plate Beaty. Walker Buehler moved Peters to second on a sacrifice bunt before Chris Taylor flied out to center for the final out.

In the bottom of the inning, San Francisco’s Brandon Crawford hit a leadoff double off the top of the wall in center field — only the fourth hit Buehler has allowed.

However, what probably should have been the second out of inning turned into the Giants’ fifth hit when Evan Longoria hit a popup to shallow center that fell between three Dodgers players. It initially looked like either shortstop Gavin Lux or second baseman Max Muncy would get to it while backpedaling as center fielder Chris Taylor approached. The ball fell right in front of a sliding Taylor.

On the next at-bat, Alex Dickerson singled to left to drive in Crawford from third for the Giants’ first run. Buehler then got Mauricio Dubon on a called third strike before striking out Darin Ruf with a 95-mph high fastball to leave Longoria and Dickerson stranded.

End of seventh: Dodgers 4, Giants 1


Dodgers hold 2-0 lead over Giants going into seventh inning

Justin Turner drew a walk off Giants reliever Nick Tropeano — the third San Francisco pitcher of the game — but that was all the Dodgers would accomplish in the inning. Chris Taylor grounded out, Max Muncy hit in a fielder’s choice to force out Turner at second and Albert Pujols ground out to third.

It only took Walker Buehler 11 pitches to retire the Giants in order in the bottom half of the inning. Buehler has allowed three hits on 79 pitches.

End of sixth: Dodgers 2, Giants 0


Austin Barnes hits his first home run of the season

Austin Barnes hit a solo home run off San Francisco Giants reliever Jarlin Garcia to give the Dodgers a 2-0 lead in the fifth inning.

Barnes whacked a 94-mph fastball just over the wall in left-center for his first home run of the season.

On the next at-bat, DJ Peters hit a sharp ground ball to center that initially looked like it would be a single before a hard-charging Peters turned it into a double. He was left stranded there when Mike Yastrzemski made a leaning, over-the-wall catch on a foul ball hit by Walker Buehler.

Garcia relieved starting pitcher Scott Kazmir, who allowed two hits and one earned run over four innings. It was Kazmir’s first major-league start since September 2016 when he pitched for the Dodgers.

The Giants went down 1-2-3 in the bottom half of the inning.

End of fifth: Dodgers 2, Giants 0


Justin Turner’s slick play at third frustrates Giants

A perfectly executed 5-4-3 double play stymied the Giants’ efforts to build some momentum in the fourth inning.

After Brandon Belt reached base on a well-placed, two-strike bunt down the third-base side, Justin Turner helped end the inning when he corralled a bouncer from Evan Longoria and threw across himself to Max Muncy, who beat Longoria with the throw to first.

Max Muncy, who hit his ninth home run of 2021 in the first inning, reached base on a sharply lined single to right. He went no further, however, when Albert Pujols hit into a 5-4-3 double play.

End of fourth: Dodgers 1, Giants 0


Walker Buehler and Dodgers defuse potential scoring chance for Giants

Dodgers second baseman Max Muncy, left, turns a double play after forcing out San Francisco's Mike Yastrzemski.
Dodgers second baseman Max Muncy, left, turns a double play after forcing out San Francisco’s Mike Yastrzemski during the first inning.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

Walker Buehler and the Dodgers got out of a sticky situation. After Mike Tauchman hit a 10th-pitch single to start the inning, Scott Kazmir got plenty of high-fives in the dugout after the 37-year-old pitcher he moved Tauchman to second on a sacrifice bunt.

Buehler then took over, striking out Mike Yastrzemski on 97-mph fastball before getting out of the inning on Buster Posey ground out to third. Buehler is at 45 pitches.

The Dodgers went down in order in the top of the inning, with DJ Peters and Walker Buehler grounding out before Kazmir struck out Chris Taylor.

End of third inning: Dodgers 1, Giants 0


Dodgers hold onto 1-0 lead after two innings

Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler delivers against the Giants on Saturday.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

Walker Buehler was a bit upset he gave up a walk to Alex Dickerson, but it was a pretty-ho hum inning for the right-hander. He struck out Brandon Belt before getting Evan Longoria to ground out to short. After walking Dickerson, he struck out Mauricio Dubon.

Giants starter Scott Kazmir retired the Dodgers in order, getting Gavin Lux and Matt Beaty to ground out and Austin Barnes to pop out.

End of second: Dodgers 1, Giants 0


Max Muncy splashes a home run to give Dodgers 1-0 lead

Max Muncy hit his ninth home run of the season off Giants starter Scott Kazmir to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead in the first inning.

Kazmir is making his first major league start since 2016 when he was with the Dodgers. He struck out Justin Turner before giving up a 423-foot McCovey Cove splasher to Muncy.

Walker Buehler retired the Giants in order in the bottom half of the inning. He gave up a single to Mike Yastrzemski before Buster Posey grounded out into a 4-3 double play. Brandon Crawford then grounded out to Buehler.

End of first: Dodgers 1, Giants 0


Giants call up Scott Kazmir to start against Dodgers, completing unlikely comeback

San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Scott Kazmir delivers against the Dodgers on Saturday.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

SAN FRANCISCO — The last time Scott Kazmir appeared in a major-league game, he was at the end of his first year of a three-year, $48 million contract with the Dodgers. That was Sept. 23, 2016. He left the game against the Rockies after one inning because of a rib injury never to pitch for the Dodgers again.

Nearly five years later, Kazmir, now 37, will take the mound Saturday at Oracle Park for the Giants against the Dodgers, who will pay him $8 million in deferred money this year to complete the contract he signed in December 2015.

“Credit to Scott,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “He wants to keep going. Feels there’s more in the tank. I definitely didn’t expect him to make a start against us this year, but credit to his perseverance.”

Injuries derailed Kazmir’s career. A first-round pick in 2002, Kazmir logged 12 innings for single-A Rancho Cucamonga in 2017 before he was traded to the Braves that winter. The Braves released him the following spring, seemingly ending his playing days.

But Kazmir announced a comeback attempt last year and made four starts for the Eastern Reyes del Tigre of the Constellation Energy League. The Giants thought he showed enough promise to sign him to a minor-league contract in February. He logged 6 1/3 innings across two games for triple-A Sacramento before getting the call to start Saturday.


Mookie Betts taking a ‘spa day’ Saturday, not in Dodgers’ lineup

Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Mookie Betts catches a line drive off the bat of San Francisco.
Dodgers right fielder Mookie Betts catches a line drive during the first inning Friday.
(D. Ross Cameron / Associated Press)

SAN FRANCISCO — The Dodgers have remained resolute in their plan to give healthy players days off to rest this season, assuming the kind of load management thinking that has taken hold in the NBA in recent years.

On Friday, first baseman Max Muncy wasn’t in the starting lineup against the Giants to rest, though he entered the game late. It’s Mookie Betts’ turn Saturday.

The outfielder isn’t in the Dodgers’ starting lineup as they look to beat the first-place Giants to clinch a series win after starting 18 straight games and eight days in a row.

Instead, DJ Peters will play right field and bat eighth. Chris Taylor will lead off and play center field.

“It’s just we’re in the midst of 10 [games] in a row,” Roberts said when asked about Betts’ absence. “We got a day game tomorrow. Get him a spa day, reset and be ready for tomorrow.”

Scott Kazmir will take the mound opposite the Dodgers to complete an unlikely comeback. The 37-year-old left-hander hasn’t appeared in a major-league game since September 2016 with the Dodgers. He signed a minor-league contract with the Giants in February and appeared in two games for triple-A Sacramento before getting called up.

Walker Buehler will counter Kazmir. He enters with 2.98 ERA in eight starts, all of which have lasted at least six innings.

DODGERS (27-18)
Chris Taylor CF
Justin Turner 3B
Max Muncy 2B
Albert Pujols 1B
Gavin Lux SS
Austin Barnes C
Matt Beaty LF
DJ Peters RF
Walker Buehler P

GIANTS (28-17)
Mike Yastrzemski RF
Buster Posey C
Brandon Crawford SS
Brandon Belt 1B
Evan Longoria 3B
Alex Dickerson LF
Mauricio Dubón 2B
Mike Tauchman CF
Scott Kazmir P


Betting lines and odds for Dodgers vs. Giants on Saturday

Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler delivers against the Colorado Rockies last month.
(David Zalubowski / Associated Press)

The Dodgers look to to pick up their 10th win in 11 games Saturday against the San Francisco Giants.

For the Dodgers Walker Buehler, will get the start and despite a lot of no decisions with a 2-0 record in eight stats, he’s pitched well enough consistently to warrant more wins, allowing two runs or fewer in six starts.

The Giants are tied with the San Diego Padres for the best record in MLB at 28-17, but are far better on the run line with a 30-15 mark and are 18-3 on the run line as an underdog. Only the Red Sox have better win percentage on the run line as an underdog at 14-2.

Dodgers line for May 22, 2021.

Both teams have been toward the top of the league in most pitching categories.

The Dodgers have allowed three runs or fewer in each of their past seven games while the Giants have given up four runs or fewer in 11 of their last 12 games.

VSiN, the Sports Betting Network, offers more expert sports betting content in a free daily email at


Trevor Bauer keeps the Giants down and riles up the crowd in Dodgers win

SAN FRANCISCO — Trevor Bauer swaggered off the mound to boos in the Dodgers’ 2-1 win over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night and didn’t ignore them. He cupped his ear to the Oracle Park crowd, urging the fans to raise the volume. He raised his arms. He absorbed the disgust. He was in hostile territory, 61/3 innings into his first taste of the oldest baseball rivalry in the West, and he ended a 126-pitch appearance by completing his heel turn in a way that would’ve made Tommy Lasorda crack a smile from ear to ear.

“They’re going to hate me anyway,” Bauer said. “Might as well lean into it.”

Highlights from the Dodgers’ 2-1 win over the San Francisco Giants on Friday.

Bauer brashly exited the game with a one-run lead, having yielded an unearned run on his own throwing error and lost command at the end, before Nate Jones and Blake Treinen combined to close out the Dodgers’ ninth win in 10 games to open a three-game series between the rivals.

Chris Taylor supplied all the offense for the Dodgers (27-18) with a two-run homer to straightaway center off former Dodger Alex Wood in the third inning. Wood was otherwise effective. The left-hander surrendered the two runs on eight hits, lowering his earned-run average to 1.93 in seven starts this season.

Read more >>>


Dodgers closer Blake Treinen holds off Giants in ninth

Dodgers: Jarlin Garcia took over on the mound for the Giants. DJ Peters flied out to left. Matt Beaty replaced reliever Nate Jones and singled to right. Mookie Betts struck out swinging. And Chris Taylor was at the plate when Beaty tried to steal second and was tagged out to end the top of the ninth.

Giants: Blake Treinen took over on the mound for the Dodgers as “Beat LA” chants erupted. Evan Longoria grounded out to the shortstop. Alex Dickerson popped out to third. And Donovan Solano grounded out to Treinen to complete the win.

The Dodgers only had four relievers available Friday night, a source of concern entering the game, but the bullpen retired eight consecutive hitters to secure the victory.

End of ninth: Dodgers 2, Giants 1


New Dodger Nate Jones delivers scoreless inning

Dodgers: Albert Pujols singled to center to lead off the inning, but the Dodgers stranded him. Will Smith flied out to center, Gavin Lux struck out swinging and Sheldon Neuse lined out to center.

Giants: Max Muncy replaced Pujols at first. Nate Jones continued a solid debut with the Dodgers. Buster Posey grounded out to third, Brandon Crawford struck out looking and Branded grounded out to third.

End of eighth: Dodgers 2, Giants 1


Trevor Bauer eggs on Giants fans, Dodgers maintain slim lead

Dodgers: Zack Littell took over on the mound for the Giants and quickly rolled through the top of the Dodgers’ lineup. Mookie Betts failed to reach base for the first time this game, striking out swinging. Chris Taylor struck out and Justin Turner grounded out to third.

Giants: Trevor Bauer convinced manager Dave Roberts to keep him on the game, pushing Bauer past his season high 113 pitches. Bauer surrendered a leadoff walk to Donovan Solano. Next up, Mike Tauchman struck out swinging. Bauer hit 126 pitches, the most in Major League Baseball this season and one shy of his career high before he was pulled for the night. As the Giants crowd booed, Bauer cupped his hand to his ear, egging them on as he left with a lead.

Bauer’s final line: 6 1/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 11 K, 126 pitches.

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Trevor Bauer cups his hand around his ear, taunting Giants fans booing him
Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Trevor Bauer cups his hand around his ear, taunting Giants fans booing him during the seventh inning of the Dodgers’ win Friday night.
(D. Ross Cameron / Associated Press)

Nate Jones, who just signed with the Dodgers, took the mound. Darin Ruf struck out swinging and Mike Yastrzemski grounded out to second to maintain the Dodgers’ lead.

End of seventh: Dodgers 2, Giants 1


Trevor Bauer gives up one run, but avoids surrendering lead

Dodgers: Will Smith struck out swinging, Gavin Lux doubled to center and Sheldon Neuse struck out swinging. Trevor Bauer, who earned more boos from Giants fans for being slow getting to the plate, then lined out to right to conclude the top half of the inning. Bauer remains hitless this season.

Giants: Mike Yastrzemski walked, Buster Posey struck out looking, Brandon Crawford walked and Bauer stayed on the mound has he passed 103 pitches. Just as “Beat LA” chants grew louder, Bauer struck out Brandon Belt. The 10th strikeout secured the popular free Jumbo Jacks for Dodger fans at select Southern California Jack in the Box locations.

Evan Longoria hit short and Bauer tried to quickly flip it to first, but the toss was wide. Yastrzemski scored on the error, Bauer’s first in four years, and the limited capacity San Francisco crowd roared. The tying run was on third and a go-ahead run was at second as Alex Dickerson faced off with Bauer. As the “Beat LA chants got louder,” Dickerson flied out to end the threat.

Bauer has tied season high of 113 pitches. He has reached the figure four times this season.

End of sixth: Dodgers 2, Giants 1


Dodgers maintain 2-0 lead after scoreless fifth inning

Dodgers: Mookie Betts continued to put the ball in play, hitting to centerfield. He pushed to reach second before he was forced to double back and narrowly was safe at first. Chris Taylor, who has delivered the sole RBI so far this game, flied out to right. Justin Turner singled to right and advanced Betts to second, but Albert Pujols grounded into a double play.

Giants: An inning after working into and out of a jam, Trevor Bauer was more efficient. Donovan Solano grounded out to third, Mike Tauchman flied out to shortstop and Alex Wood struck out swinging.

End of fifth: Dodgers 2, Giants 0


Dodgers seek Mexican Sandy Koufax in latest episode of ‘Fernandomania @ 40’

Don’t miss the latest episode of “Fernandomania @ 40,” the Dodgers’ docu-series chronicling Fernando Valenzuela’s electric rookie season and its impact on Southern California.

Episode 4 starts in Los Angeles. After the Dodgers moved to the city in 1958, the team spent more than two decades searching for a player to connect with the local Latino community. But until Valenzuela’s emergence in 1981, Latinos looked to other sports for heroes that looked like them.

All episodes are available on YouTube and include subtitles in English and Spanish.


Trevor Bauer works his way out of fourth inning jam

Dodgers: Two runners were stranded as the Dodgers’ offense remained active. Will Smith flied out to right before Gavin Lux delivered an infield single, using his speed to narrowly beat the throw. Sheldon Neuse reached first on an infield single and Lux advanced to third. But DJ Peters struck out swinging and Trevor Bauer hit a ground ball the Giants easily gathered for an out at second.

Giants: Trevor Bauer entered the inning steady and efficient, suggesting he could help the Dodgers’ tired bullpen get some rest. Bauer ran into a few issues in the fourth, firing up the Giants’ limited capacity crowd. Brandon Belt doubled to left and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Bauer thought he struck out Evan Longoria, who eventually earned a walk during the at-bat and later stole second. With runners on third and second, Alex Dickerson struck out swinging. Bauer pumped his fist out of getting out of the jam, but his pitch count has surpassed 70.

End of fourth: Dodgers 2, Giants 0


Dodgers claim 2-0 lead over Giants in third inning

Dodgers: Trevor Bauer struck out before the top of the Dodgers’ lineup got hot. Mookie Betts put the ball in play during his second at-bat, hitting to left centerfield and splitting the gap. The Giants bobbled the ball and Betts easily reached second base. Former Dodger Alex Wood summoned his catcher to the mound briefly before facing Chris Taylor. The conversation did not help. Taylor blasted the ball past the centerfield fence for a two-run homer. Justin Turner and Albert Pujols grounded out to close out the inning.

Giants: Bauer moved efficiently through the Giants’ lineup on 11 pitches. Mike Tauchman flied out, Wood struck out swinging and Mike Yastrzemski struck out looking.

End of third: Dodgers 2, Giants 0


Dodgers, Giants remain scoreless after two innings

Dodgers: For the second inning, the Dodgers’ leadoff man reached first base but the team couldn’t convert it into a run. Will Smith delivered a single to the right corner, but Mike Yastrzemski hustled to get to the ball and deliver to the first, avoiding a double. Gavin Lux and Sheldon Nuse grounded out before DJ Peters struck out swinging.

Giants: Trevor Bauer struck out leadoff man Brandon Belt. Justin Turner collected a potent Evan Longoria ground ball, firing to first to earn the out. Alex Dickerson hit down the third base line, notching a single with two outs. Bauer then struck out Donovan Solano to close out the second inning.

End of second: Dodgers 0, Giants 0


Dodgers, Giants scoreless after first inning

The first of 19 meetings between the Dodgers and Giants this season is under way in San Francisco.

Dodgers: After a Mookie Betts walk, Chris Taylor and Justin Turner struck out. Albert Pujols then connected on an Alex Wood pitch, but the Giants easily handled his grounder to third to close out the scoreless top half of the inning.

Giants: Trevor Bauer kept the Giants scoreless. Mike Yastrzemski flied out, Betts collected a Buster Posey hit to right field and Brandon Crawford struck out swinging.

End of first: Giants 0, Dodgers 0


David Price misses being a starter but is thriving in new role

SAN FRANCISCO – David Price’s first start as a Dodger was not like anyone envisioned when he was acquired from the Boston Red Sox in February 2020.

It happened Thursday, more than a year later than expected, and only lasted two innings. In years’ past, two innings would’ve meant failure or injury, but it was design Thursday because Price’s start came as an opener to a bullpen game.

The left-hander didn’t play catch in the outfield to prepare, opting to just get loose in the bullpen since he wasn’t tasked to pitch deep into the game. He did hope, however, to pitch long enough to get an at-bat, but he was stranded on deck in the second inning. He exited after scattering three hits over two scoreless frames.

“I do miss being out there as a starter,” Price said before the Dodgers opened a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants on Friday. “I miss being in the dugout, I think, more than anything. On the days that you’re not pitching, being in the dugout is a lot of fun.”

Price arrived with Mookie Betts from Boston last February expecting to start games. But he opted out of the 2020 season, citing health concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic, and returned this spring to a three-man competition for the final spot in the rotation. Dustin May won out, sending Price and Tony Gonsolin to the bullpen.

Six weeks later, Price is the only one of the three healthy and on the roster. May recently underwent Tommy John surgery. Gonsolin was placed on the injured list with a shoulder injury before appearing in a game. He’s set to begin rehab assignment to continue building up as a starter to replace May in the rotation.

Price said replacing May “definitely crossed my mind,” but he and the club didn’t have discussions about it. Instead, the 35-year-old former Cy Young Award winner will remain in the bullpen. He entered Friday having surrendered seven runs – six earned – in nine outings this season. He’s given up one run in nine innings over his last seven appearances, including three scoreless frames in two games since missing four weeks with a hamstring strain.

“There are a lot of different variables whenever you’re coming out of the ‘pen, but I’ve enjoyed it,.” Price said. “I think having that opportunity that you might be in the game on back-to-back days or three out of four, whatever it is, I think that’s been enjoyable to me.”

He said it’s a transition that’s been made easier by having Jimmy Nelson, another starter-turned-reliever, around to share the experience. Nelson also joined the Dodgers last year and missed the season, though because of back surgery. The two veterans are catch partners and challenge each other in their running program. Price said Nelson, who has a 2.41 ERA in 16 appearances, has pushed him to be better.

“Me and Jimmy are pretty different in a lot of ways, which is why I think we gel so well,” Price said. “He’s like my therapy animal, like my therapy pet. Like the therapy dogs that you see at the hospital, you know, they make everybody feel good. Jimmy is just a guy that makes me laugh.”

For now, they’ll continue making the transition together, giving the Dodgers innings whenever they need them.


Dodgers call up Nate Jones for bullpen help, option Luke Raley

SAN FRANCISCO — The Dodgers called up veteran right-hander Nate Jones on Friday to bolster their relief corps after their bullpen game Thursday. Outfielder Luke Raley was optioned to create a spot on the active roster. Infielder Travis Blankenhorn was designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster.

Jones, 35, is in his 10th major-league season. He began the year with the Braves and appeared in 12 games before he was designated for assignment. He recorded a 3.48 ERA,, but he struggled with command, issuing 10 walks to seven strikeouts in 10 1/3 innings.

He signed a minor-league contract with the Dodgers last week. He was assigned him to triple-A Oklahoma City last week and surrendered four runs in three innings across three outings for the affiliate.

Jones will be one of four relievers available for the Dodgers on Friday. Edwin Uceta, Dennis Santana and Blake Treinen are the others. The Dodgers are short after using seven relievers during their 3-2 win over the Diamondbacks on Thursday.

Raley, a 26-year-old rookie, is 8 for 44 (.182) with one home run and a .553 OPS in 23 games this season. The Dodgers claimed Blankenhorn, 24, from the Twins last week. He appeared in three games for Oklahoma City, going 0 for 3 at the plate.


Max Muncy gets Friday night off against Giants

SAN FRANCISCO — Max Muncy isn’t in the Dodgers’ starting lineup Friday in their series opener against the first-place Giants at Oracle Park.

Manager Dave Roberts said Muncy is getting the night to rest as the Dodgers play their eighth of 10 straight games without a day off. Roberts added that Muncy will be available off the bench.

Albert Pujols will play first base and bat cleanup opposite former Dodger Alex Wood. Sheldon Neuse will play second base and bat seventh.

The Giants enter Friday with the best record in the majors at 28-16 — two games ahead of the third-place Dodgers — and Wood is a big reason for the success.

The 30-year-old Wood has been one of the best pitchers in the majors this season after joining the rival Giants on a one-year contract worth $6 million plus incentives during the offseason. He enters Friday with a 1.75 earned-run average and 0.944 WHIP in 36 innings across six starts.

Wood spent three and 1/2 seasons with the Dodgers before the team traded him to the Reds as part of a seven-player deal in December 2018. He returned last season on a one-year deal. He was signed as a starter, but landed on the injured list after one start and returned as a reliever.

He finished the regular season with a 6.39 ERA in nine outings, but he was dominant in the postseason. He gave up one run across 6 2/3 innings in four games in October, capped by two perfect innings in the decisive Game 6 of the World Series.

The Dodgers will counter with Trevor Bauer, the newest member of their starting rotation. He will take the mound with a 2.20 ERA over 57 1/3 innings in nine starts. The Dodgers will need him to continue his effectiveness and pitch deep into the game with just four relievers available after Thursday’s bullpen game.

DODGERS (26-18)
Mookie Betts RF
Chris Taylor LF
Justin Turner 3B
Albert Pujols 1B
Will Smith C
Gavin Lux SS
Sheldon Neuse 2B
DJ Peters CF
Trevor Bauer P

GIANTS (28-16)
Mike Yastrzemski RF
Buster Posey C
Brandon Crawford SS
Brandon Belt 1B
Evan Longoria 3B
Alex Dickerson LF
Donovan Solano 2B
Mike Tauchman CF
Alex Wood P


For Dodgers and Angels, full ballparks to come June 15

An aerial view of Dodger Stadium in March 2020.
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

The 2020 baseball season: two months of cardboard cutouts.

The 2021 season, so far: two months of actual fans, but not too many, standing in lines and sitting in groups six feet apart.

The 2021 season, starting June 15: back to normal.

California will officially remove capacity limits on that date, allowing the state’s five major league teams to play to full ballparks for the first time in two years.

Read more >>>


Giants putting the ‘old’ in the old Dodgers rivalry

San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey looks toward dugout against the Pittsburgh Pirates on May 13.
(Gene J. Puskar / Associated Press)

The grand old rivalry is born again Friday, with a surprising emphasis on “old.”

The San Francisco Giants won three World Series championships in five years, the last one in 2014, but nostalgia wins no pennants. Three years ago, tired of looking up at the Dodgers in the standings, the Giants hired a Dodgers executive and directed him to build a better, younger team, with a new generation of heroes.

On Friday, as the Giants and Dodgers meet for the first time this season at Oracle Park, the Giants boast the best record in the major leagues. The Dodgers have spent 25 days in first place, but so have the Giants.

The Giants are a better team than they were three years ago, but they are older. The pitchers are older. The hitters are older — the oldest lineup in the major leagues, in fact. Of the nine men in the Giants’ starting lineup Thursday, two were younger than 30.

Read more >>>


ICYMI: Homers from Albert Pujols, Will Smith lift Dodgers over Diamondbacks

Dodgers first baseman Albert Pujols, right, is congratulated by Will Smith after hitting a two-run home run.
Dodgers first baseman Albert Pujols, right, is congratulated by Will Smith after hitting a two-run home run against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

Albert Pujols has gone from over-the-hill to over-the-moon, from 41-year-old castaway to rejuvenated slugger, a two-week transformation the first baseman achieved with a 35-mile drive up the 5 Freeway and a color-scheme change from Angels red to Dodgers blue.

Designated for assignment and released by the Angels, Pujols found a home with the defending World Series-champion Dodgers, and he rewarded that faith with his first homer for his new club, a two-run shot to right field in the second inning of Thursday night’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Will Smith, who idolized Pujols while growing up in Louisville, Ky., as Pujols was building his Hall-of-Fame resume with the St. Louis Cardinals, then followed suit in the seventh, banging a tie-breaking solo homer to left to lift the Dodgers to a 3-2 victory and a four-game sweep in Chavez Ravine.

Read more >>>


Betting lines and odds for Dodgers vs. Giants on Friday

Dodgers starting pitcher Trevor Bauer delivers against the Angels on May 9.
(Alex Gallardo / Associated Press)

Following a trio of series wins at home, the Dodgers try to win their first series on the road in over a month with Trevor Bauer on the mound to open a three-game set in San Francisco on Friday.

Bauer has allowed two earned runs or fewer in each of his past eight starts and has gone at least six innings in eight of his nine starts this season.

Former Dodgers starter Alex Wood will start for San Francisco. He has a 5-0 record with a 1.75 ERA in six starts and has been consistent, giving up two runs or fewer in every start.

The Giants scored at least four runs in each of their last six games, which included a 19-run outburst against the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday. They’ve hung their hat more on pitching, playing just eight of their 18 home games over the total. They also rank fourth in team ERA.

Dodgers line for May 21, 2021.

The Giants own the league’s beat record at 26-18, and have the best record at home with a 14-4 mark. The Dodgers are second in league team ERA and have played five of their last six games under the total. Six of Bauer’s last eight starts have gone under.

VSiN, the Sports Betting Network, offers more expert sports betting content in a free daily email at


How to watch and stream the Dodgers vs. Giants series on TV

Dodgers players celebrate a win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wendesday.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

Here’s how to watch this week’s three-game series between the Dodgers and San Francisco Giants at Oracle Park:

How to stream

Spectrum SportsNet LA is available with a subscription to AT&T TV “Choice Plan” ($84.99 / mo.). You can stream the game on your Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, and your browser.

Fans outside of the Los Angeles market can stream the games using MLB.TV.

Saturday’s game will air on FOX.

How to watch on TV

Spectrum SportsNet LA and SportsNet LA Desportes are carrying the games on cable and satellite providers.

How to listen

In Los Angeles, the games can be heard on 570 AM or 1020 AM (Español).