Clayton Kershaw struck out six and gave up one earned run over six innings… (Reed Saxon / Associated…)
Despite the return of outfielders Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier, the Dodgers' offense scuffled again, but Mark Ellis’ two-run home run in the sixth inning lifted the Dodgers to a 2-1 victory over the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium on Friday night.
The Padres scored in the second inning and held a 1-0 lead until the bottom of the sixth inning, when Ellis saved the day in an otherwise futile offensive output.
Tony Gwynn Jr.reached on an infield single as a pinch-hitter for Clayton Kershaw. Gwynn r reached second on a forceout before Ellis lifted the Dodgers to a 2-1 advantage.
In his first big league appearance since May 30, Kemp went two for four with a double, but was not tested on the basepaths. Ethier was 0 for 2 and was hit by a pitch in his first game since June 27.
Kershaw (7-5) gave up only the one run and scattered six hits over six innings to go along with three walks and six strikeouts.
The bullpen shut the door as the Dodgers (48-40) maintained their half-game lead over the San Francisco Giants, who beat Houston.
Javy Guerra escaped trouble in the seventh after giving up a single to Alexi Amerista and wild pitching him to second base. But he recorded three consecutive outs to strand Amarista.
Ronald Belisario and Kenley Jansen pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth, respectively, with the latter picking up his 16th save of the season. Juan Rivera made a fine defensive play at first base on Logan Forsythe's ground ball to end the game.
Padres starter Clayton Richard pitched admirably for San Diego (34-54), but was the victim of a lack of run support.
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