National League Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, May 31st (All times Eastern)
Pittsburgh Pirates (25-29) at Los Angeles Dodgers (29-27), 7:15 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Pittsburgh - Brandon Cumpton (0-1, 3.38) Los Angeles - Hyun-Jin Ryu (5-2, 3.10)
(SportsNetwork.com) - Los Angeles starter Hyun-Jin Ryu won't be following up a no-hitter on Saturday night, but there will still be some pressure on the left-hander as the Dodgers resume a four-game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Dodgers will hope Ryu can play the role of stopper as the club has lost three straight games.
Ryu last pitched on Monday versus the Cincinnati Reds, one day after Josh Beckett threw a no-hitter for the Dodgers against the Philadelphia Phillies. Ryu himself got off to a hot start, retiring the first 21 batters faced to take a perfect game into the eighth inning.
However, before that inning, Ryu used some of his energy to contribute to the offense in the seventh, driving in a run and also scoring on Carl Crawford's two-run double.
Running the bases appeared to take a toll on Ryu, who served up a leadoff double to Todd Frazier in the eighth to snap a string of 17 straight hitless innings by Los Angeles hurlers.
Ryu ended up recording just one out in the frame and gave up three runs on three hits, but still struck out a total of seven and won a 4-3 decision to get to 5-2 with a 3.10 earned run average on the season.
"That long inning hurt him," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "It broke the momentum for him. At the end of the night, we got the win."
The 27-year-old Ryu is set to face the Pirates for the second time in his career, having bested them on April 7 of last year in Los Angeles after giving up two runs over 6 1/3 innings.
Beckett took the mound last night for the first time since his no-hitter and yielded just two runs over five innings, but suffered a 2-1 loss.
"Josh threw the ball okay but wasn't quite as sharp tonight," said Mattingly.
Four L.A. relievers combined to allow just a hit in four innings of work, but Hanley Ramirez's RBI single in the eighth was the only run the offense could muster.
Pittsburgh, meanwhile, got just enough to get Francisco Liriano his first win of the season. The hurler, who won a career-high 16 games last season, fanned eight over 5 2/3 scoreless innings.
"It was a battle out there tonight," said Liriano, who moved to 1-5 on the year. "I just tried to stay focused. My changeup was working and I had better location. It's good to get that first win out of the way because I felt I wasn't doing my job."
Ike Davis went 2-for-4 with a solo homer for Pittsburgh, winners in seven of 10. Josh Harrison also had two hits and Neil Walker drove in the other run.
Pittsburgh also picked up a second straight victory in Los Angeles, where it had lost nine in a row coming into this series.
Brandon Cumpton takes the mound tonight for the Pirates to face the team he made his Major League debut against.
The 25-year-old Cumpton took on the Dodgers last June 15 and got a no- decision, charged with three runs over five innings.
Cumpton went on to go 2-1 with a 2.05 ERA in six games -- five starts -- last year and is 0-1 with a 3.38 ERA through three outings this season. The righty did not factor into a 5-3 win over the New York Mets on Monday, giving up one earned run over six frames.
05/31 10:35:44 ET