Even the return of Matt Kemp failed to boost the Los Angeles Dodgers' struggling offense.
After getting shut out for a second straight game, the Dodgers try to avoid a third loss in a row on Wednesday evening in the finale of a brief two-game series with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Los Angeles fell a game further off the pace for first place in the NL West with Tuesday's 1-0 defeat as Arizona's Ian Kennedy outdueled Clayton Kershaw. The setback left the Dodgers six games back of the San Francisco Giants in the division, though they remained a game behind the St. Louis Cardinals for the NL's second wild card.
Kennedy hurled 7 1/3 scoreless innings, scattering four hits and six strikeouts while throwing 77 of his 110 pitches for strikes.
"Tonight my fastball, and really what made my fastball better, was the execution of the offspeed pitches," Kennedy said. "I was throwing them for strikes. When you do that it is going to be a good game, at least you give your team a chance. You've got to against Kershaw, He is one of the best pitchers in the game."
Brad Ziegler recorded the last two outs of the eighth and David Hernandez struck out a pair of batters in the ninth as he logged his third save.
Miguel Montero knocked in the lone run of the game in the seventh, though it was unearned off Kershaw.
After Paul Goldschmidt reached on Hanley Ramirez's throwing error, Justin Upton flied out before Montero took an offering to right field for a double.
"I blinked first tonight. I threw a pitch I shouldn't have. I didn't put it where I wanted to and Miguel made me pay for it," Kershaw said. "He did a good job with it. You can't blink first in those games and I did, so that's just the way it goes."
As Arizona won for the fourth time in six games, Los Angeles lost for the fifth time in six contests.
Luis Cruz had two of the Dodgers' five hits and Kemp went 1-for-3 with a double and two strikeouts after sitting out the last two games with a shoulder ailment.
Los Angeles, which was shut out by the Giants on Sunday, will try to get its offense going tonight against Arizona's Trevor Cahill, who took a no-hitter into the seventh inning of his most recent outing.
The right-hander snapped a six-start winless streak (0-2) with a that outing as he beat the Giants on Wednesday. He ended up scattering two runs and a pair of hits over 6 1/3 frames, moving to 10-11 with a 3.98 earned run average through 28 starts this year.
"Your adrenaline starts getting up and I was trying to maybe do too much at the end and just kind of got a little bit tired," Cahill said.
The 24-year-old's win came one start after he gave up three runs over 5 2/3 frames of a no-decision at the Dodgers. He is 3-0 with a 2.40 ERA in five lifetime meetings.
Aaron Harang takes the hill for the Dodgers, who have lost each of the righty's last three outings.
Harang is 0-1 in that span and did not get a decision for a second start in a row on Wednesday. Facing the San Diego Padres, who allowed three runs -- two earned -- on seven hits and three walks in five innings of work.
The 24-year-old is 9-8 with a 3.75 ERA in 27 starts this season, including three against the Diamondbacks. He is 0-1 against them this year with a 9.42 ERA and Arizona is hitting .377 in those games with three homers in 14 1/3 innings.
The Diamondbacks have won nine of their past 11 versus the Dodgers and have won five of eight against them at home this season.