The Dodgers haven't swept a four game since series from any team since July 2004, against the Diamondbacks. They haven't done it at home since 1995. And they haven't done it against the Phillies until 1962. None of those facts really matter to this season, because the sweep would have been impressive without them, but I just thought I'd tell you.
Hiroki Kuroda was on the mound for the Dodgers, and he's had sort of a Jekyl and Hyde thing going on this season, but he's suddenly looking like he's getting it together. In his last three starts, including last night, he's giving up three runs over 22.1 innings. One run in each game. He's giving up fourteen hits, walked two, and struck out seventeen in that same span. I think it's safe to say he's on a little bit of a roll. And the Phillies were no match for him last night, as they managed only two hits in seven innings.
Loney tripled to lead off the second, after the right fielder tried to make a diving catch, and the ball went by him. Russell Martin struck out, then Garciparra grounded out, but brought in the runner to make it 1-0, Dodgers. In the seventh, the Phillies cut it to 2-1, thanks to a Werth double, an Utley groundout, and a Howard sac fly. But that was all they would get, and in the eighth, the Dodgers added to the lead when Martin singled, stole second with two outs, then scored on a Casey Blake single.
Kuo came on to pitch the last two innings, and was possibly even more dominant than Kuroda. Two innings, no hits, one walk, two strikeouts. I personally would have liked to see Kuroda get the complete game, since he was only at 79 pitches through seven innings, but after the Dodgers went up 3-1 and had a runner on second with two outs, Torre thought that Mark Sweeney would be a good choice to get us another run, and so Sweeney came in to pinch hit. He shockingly ended up walking, but then Kemp flied out anyway. No matter. Dodgers win, 3-1.
The Brewers come to town this weekend, but the Dodgers will miraculously miss seeing both CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets. The Brewers had an eight-game winning streak going until Thursday, when Jake Peavy put an end to it. The other Brewers' pitchers have been doing very well since the Sabathia trade, so missing the top two on their staff doesn't guarantee victories for the Dodgers. But hopefully the momentum of this series will carry over, and the Dodgers can get another series win.
As The Don Mattingly Turns
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