LOS ANGELES (AP)For at least one game, the Los Angeles Dodgers resembled the team that has been one of the best in the National League over the past nine seasons.
It could be a while until they’re truly at full strength.
Freddie Freeman had three hits, Trea Turner homered and four Los Angeles pitchers limited Cleveland to two hits in the Dodgers’ 7-1 victory over the Guardians on Saturday – a victory stained by the postgame announcement that Mookie Betts is headed to the injured list.
Manager Dave Roberts revealed that Betts has a cracked right rib from a collision with Cody Bellinger on Wednesday. There is no timeline for the 2018 AL MVP’s return.
”It’s certainly a big blow to all of us, but knowing and having the information at least there is solace in that,” Roberts said. ”A week from now, we’ll know more. Hopefully we can get him back sooner than later.”
Julio Urias (4-6) pitched six strong innings to earn his first win since May 20. The left-hander, who had gone 0-3 with a 3.09 ERA in his last four outings, allowed an unearned run on two hits with six strikeouts and two walks.
”I don’t think we’ve done a great job giving Julio run support this year,” catcher Austin Barnes said. ”I thought his fastball was good today. He did a good job moving his curveball around. He is settling in nice.”
It was a season low in hits for Cleveland, which was missing AL RBI leader Jose Ramirez due to right thumb discomfort. The loss snapped a season-best five-game winning streak.
”That guy pitched well. That’s more what it was,” Guardians manager Terry Francona said.
While the Guardians had trouble generating offense, all of the Dodgers starters reached base, with five of their 11 hits going for extra bases.
After Austin Barnes’ sacrifice fly scored Cody Bellinger to tie it at 1 in the second, Turner put the Dodgers up 3-1 when he drove a low changeup from Cal Quantrill (4-4) into the seats in left-center for his ninth homer of the season.
Quantrill allowed season highs with five runs and 10 hits. The right-hander struck out four and issued one walk.
The Guardians took a 1-0 lead in the first when Amed Rosario scored from second after a hard-hit grounder by Oscar Mercado went through second baseman Max Muncy’s legs. That put runners at the corners before Andres Gimenez struck out to end the inning.
That would be the last time Cleveland threatened. The Guardians had only two baserunners the remaining eight innings.
Urias, David Price, Phil Bickford and Reyes Moronta retired their last 12 batters after Rosario’s double to lead off the sixth. The solid pitching performance by the Dodgers was fitting since the statue of Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax was unveiled in the Centerfield Plaza before the game.
Los Angeles added two runs in the third on Justin Turner’s RBI double and an RBI triple by Gavin Lux.
The Dodgers made it 6-1 in the sixth when Barnes scored on a bases-loaded walk to Justin Turner by Anthony Castro. They added a run in the seventh when Lux scored on a throwing error by Cleveland reliever by Nick Sandlin.
The Dodger bullpen has now gone five games and 12 2/3 innings without allowing an earned run.
Rosario has a season-best 12-game hitting streak. He is batting .375 (24 for 64) with five doubles, one home run and six RBIs this month.
Guardians: With Cleveland having Monday off, there is a possibility Ramirez could also miss Sunday’s game.
Dodgers: P Dustin May, who underwent Tommy John surgery on his right elbow last May, threw 40 pitches during a bullpen session. Roberts said the next step in May’s progression is for him to begin facing hitters every five days and build up his stamina from there.
Guardians: RHP Shane Bieber (3-3, 3.01 ERA), who grew up an hour away from Dodger Stadium in Laguna Hills, California, faces the Dodgers for the first time.
Dodgers: LHP Andrew Heaney (1-0, 0.00 ERA) will be activated off the injured list before the game and will make his first start since April 17. He has missed the past two months due to left shoulder discomfort.
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