National League Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, July 28th (All times eastern)
Los Angeles Dodgers (54-47) at San Francisco Giants (55-44), 4:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Los Angeles - Chad Billingsley (5-9, 4.15) San Francisco - Barry Zito (8-6, 3.75)
(Sports Network) - Chad Billingsley makes his second start since returning from the disabled list on Saturday when the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants continue a three-game series at AT&T Park.
Billingsley had lost five straight starts before a stint on the DL with a sore elbow. He returned on Monday to defeat St. Louis and was impressive in doing so, as he allowed a run and seven hits in six innings.
"Chad was pretty good tonight," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Anything that got started, he pitched well enough to get out of it. He got enough big outs and was throwing enough strikes."
Billingsley lost to San Francisco back on June 27 and is 7-6 lifetime against them with a 3.33 ERA in 36 games (21 starts).
The Giants, meanwhile, will rely on lefty Barry Zito, who is 8-6 with a 3.75 ERA. Zito notched his 11th quality start of the year on Sunday in Philadelphia when he held the Phillies to three runs on five hits in seven innings, but did not get a decision in his team's 4-3 loss.
"My focus was a little off in the first inning," said Zito. "Then I was able to make the adjustment and start throwing strikes."
Since serving up eight runs in only 3 1/3 frames back on June 19, Zito has pitched to a 2.25 ERA in five starts since.
Zito tossed seven scoreless innings to beat the Dodgers the last time he faced them, but is 7-9 in 23 games (22 starts) against them with a 3.79 ERA.
Los Angeles picked up a game in the standings in Friday's opener thanks to their newest acquisition, as Hanley Ramirez hit a two-run, go-ahead homer in the 10th inning to help the Dodgers to a 5-3 win.
San Francisco trailed 3-1 in the eighth when Melky Cabrera singled, Angel Pagan doubled, and Brandon Belt followed with a base hit up the middle to knot the score.
In the 10th, Sergio Romo (3-2) retired to first two batters he faced, then walked Andre Ethier on a close, full-count fastball. Ramirez capitalized by belting an 0-1 slider into the seats in left center for his 15th home run of the season and his first as a member of the Dodgers.
"That ball was crushed," said Los Angeles catcher A.J. Ellis. "You notice in batting practice, watching Hanley hit, it's just a different sound coming off of his bat. That ball was hit and our dugout erupted."
Shawn Tolleson (1-0) tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to earn the win and Kenley Jansen worked around a pair of singles in the 10th to notch his 20th save of the season.
The Dodgers halted a three-game losing streak and now trail San Francisco by two games in the National League West.
Despite Friday's loss San Francisco has won four of seven from the Dodgers this season.
07/28 10:23:09 ET