Dodgers, Ethier slam Giants
LOS ANGELES – Andre Ethier hit his first grand slam while homering in his first two at-bats, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 10-8 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night.
Vicente Padilla (1-1) allowed three runs and four hits over seven innings and struck out seven after his teammates staked him to a 7-0 lead. Matt Kemp tied a career best by homering in his fourth straight game, but slugger Manny Ramirez left after three innings because of tightness in his right calf.
Giants center fielder Aaron Rowand was hit on the bill of the helmet by a pitch from Padilla in fifth. After several minutes on his knees by home plate, Rowand walked off the field without help, accompanied by San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy and a trainer.
The Giants made it close in the ninth. Eugenio Velez hit a three-run homer off Ramon Troncoso with two outs after the Giants already had scored twice against Russ Ortiz in the inning.
Bochy didn’t get any enjoyment out of his 55th birthday, watching starting pitcher Todd Wellemeyer fall behind 3-0 after just three batters and 14 pitches. Wellemeyer (0-2) walked Rafael Furcal before Kemp homered to right-center and Ethier followed with a drive to right.
Kemp became the first Dodgers player to homer in each of the team’s first four home games since the franchise moved from Brooklyn to Los Angeles in 1958. The only other L.A. Dodgers player to homer in his first four home games was Willie Crawford, who played in four of the first five at Chavez Ravine in 1972.
Wellemeyer gave up seven runs, six hits and three walks in four innings. The right-hander, who threw 52 pitches over the first two innings, buzzed a fastball past Kemp’s head in the second before walking him. That loaded the bases for Ethier, who homered to center on the next pitch to give the Dodgers a 7-0 cushion and earn a curtain call from the crowd of 49,319.
The first runner to cross the plate was Padilla, who had drawn a leadoff walk.
Padilla was much more economical than Wellemeyer, also throwing the 52 pitches but through his first four innings. In the fifth, though, four of the first five San Francisco batters reached base and Juan Uribe got the Giants on the board with a two-run single.
Pablo Sandoval homered in the sixth for San Francisco.
The Giants, one of six teams that had the day off Thursday, the 63rd anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s first game in the big leagues with the Brooklyn Dodgers, wore jersey’s with No. 42 the back. The Dodgers also wore Robinson’s number – for the second straight night.
NOTES: Robinson played in more games (103) and had more at-bats (439) against the Giants than he did against any other opponent back in the days when the NL had only eight teams. But he had just seven career homers against them, and his 35 RBIs represented his lowest total against any club. … Rowand has been hit by a pitch 88 times since the start of the 2005 season, and 111 times during his 10-year career. … The Dodgers have averaged 7.5 runs over their last eight games.
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