Los Angeles, CA – Chris Capuano pitched into the sixth inning and a big first inning helped the Dodgers take a 3-2 victory over the Pirates to complete a three-game sweep.
Capuano (1-0) gave up two runs on six hits with seven strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings for the Dodgers, who at 6-1 are off to their best start since going 9-1 to start the 1981 season. Juan Rivera, James Loney and Juan Uribe each drove in a run.
"I had great movement on my pitches early," said Capuano. "The first win of the season is nice to get."
Jeff Karstens (0-1) gave up three runs on seven hits over five innings for the Pirates, who entered the series having taken two of three from the Phillies. Andrew McCutchen went 3-for-3 with a run scored while Michael McKenry hit a solo homer in the loss.
"In the first inning his changeup was good, but he got some elevated and they got good swings on it," said Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle. "They put them in places we weren't. After that, he was solid."
The Dodgers got all their runs in the first inning. With one out, Mark Ellis singled and Matt Kemp followed with a double. After Andre Ethier was hit by a pitch to load the bases, Rivera's sacrifice fly plated Ellis. Loney and Uribe each singled in a run for a 3-0 lead.
Pittsburgh wasted a leadoff double from McCutchen in the fourth, but McKenry hit a one-out, solo shot to center in the fifth to make it a 3-1 game.
The Pirates cut their deficit to one in the sixth when back-to-back singles from McCutchen and Casey McGehee left runners at the corners and a sac fly from Yamaico Navarro made it a 3-2 contest.
Mike McDougal then took over on the mound and gave up a single to Clint Barmes, but then got Pedro Alvarez to hit into a fielder's choice. After walking McKenry, Scott Elbert took over and got Matt Hague to line out.
Javy Guerra set the Pirates down in order in the ninth for his fifth save of the season.
The Dodgers host the Padres for three games starting on Friday...Pittsburgh continues its nine-game road trek in San Francisco on Friday...The Dodgers have won six straight against the Pirates...Karstens fell to 0-3 in six games against the Dodgers while Capuano improved to 5-7 in 18 games against the Pirates.