Great Scott: Kazmir stifles Cardinals

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Yasiel Puig’s diving catch in the second helped Scott Kazmir retire the first six batters he faced.

By Jon Weisman

Well, thanks for the lovely meal, Scott Kazmir.

Kazmir hadn’t served past the seventh inning in seven previous starts for the Dodgers, but he was everything but the after-dinner mint tonight, coming out out short of his third career complete game in a 5-3 victory over the Cardinals.

Outdoing the six innings of one-hit shutout ball he threw April 5 in San Diego in his first start as a Dodger, Kazmir was highly efficient most of the night, with all but two of his innings coming in at 15 pitches or less. He allowed five hits, walking one and striking out seven.

Kazmir got the second out of the ninth inning on his 113th pitch, but a single by Randal Grichuk and a two-run homer by former Dodger farmhand Jeremy Hazeblaker on the 120th pitch finally forced Dave Roberts to turn Kenley Jansen for his 155th career save, six shy of Eric Gagne’s club record.

Adrian Gonzalez’s opposite-field home run off Carlos Martinez in the fourth broke a scoreless tie, and after the Cardinals’ scored an unearned run without the benefit of a hit in the fifth, the Dodgers retaliated in the bottom of the inning with three runs, forcing Martinez to throw 40 pitches. Kazmir himself was a key to the inning, bunting with two strikes for his first hit of the season.

Corey Seager, whose second error of the game opened the door for the Cardinals to score that fifth-inning run, singled in the tiebreaking run in the fifth, then added a solo homer in the seventh off Dean Kiekhefer for a 3-for-4 night. Thanks to his two-week hot streak, Seager’s OPS for the season is up to .799.

1 Comment

A tremendous performance by Kazmir. I hope this is a sign of things to come.
Let’s toss him a Kazmir bouquet. (lol)

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