Thursday, February 7, 2013

Dodgers Take Two of Three From Astros

Dodgers' starting pitching dominated the first two games of this series at Houston, but the Astros came back in Game 3 to win a 14-inning nailbiter.

Game 1: LAD 7, HOU 0

Eight and a third scoreless innings from the Dodgers' Doug Rau (1-0) left Houston wilting in the Texas heat, while Davey Lopes powered the offense by going 4-for-5 with two doubles and three runs scored. Between leadoff man Lopes and #2 hitter Bill Russell, the Dodgers scored five of their seven runs, all off shelled starter Floyd Bannister (0-1).

Game 2: LAD 6, HOU 3

A game not as close as the score suggested. Dodgers were winning 6-1 into the top of the ninth, thanks to eight innings of great pitching from Burt Hooton (1-0), who couldn't strike out anyone with his patented knuckle-curve but only allowed three hits through eight. J.R. Richard (0-1) struck out six for Houston, but could only go seven, giving up four runs. Bill Russell has four errors at short but atoned by driving in a run and making a few sparkling plays in the field.  Terry Forster picked up his first save after Hooton faltered in the ninth.

Game 3: HOU 5, LAD 4 (14 innings)

The best game of the series, with three lead changes and plenty of opportunities to win it. Homers from Steve Garvey (1) and Joe Ferguson (3) brought each team back, while a Ron Cey single in the eighth tied it at three and led to extra frames. Cey went 4-for-6 with three RBIs, two doubles and even a stolen base. But after another Cey single brought home a lead run in the 12th, the Astros answered back off Forster in the bottom of the inning with a Cesar Cedeno single and stolen base (he had three hits on the day) and a dramatic, two-out RBI hit from Jose Cruz. Houston won the game in the bottom of the 14th off Bobby Castillo (0-1), after pinch hitter Jimmy Sexton singled, stole second, went to third on well-executed hit and run, and came home on another Cedeno hit. The Astros' Joe Sambito (2-0) was good enough in relief, pitching three innings for the win.

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