The Los Angeles Dodgers will aim to continue their domination of the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night when the teams meet in the middle contest of a three-game set.
Los Angeles will look to defeat the Pirates for the 15th straight time and the 22nd time in 24 meetings dating to the start of the 2017 season.
Pittsburgh put up a fight in the opener Monday before losing 2-1. Billy McKinney hit a tying homer for the Dodgers in the seventh inning and Max Muncy hit a tiebreaking blast in the eighth.
It marks the second time the Pirates dropped a 2-1 decision to Los Angeles this season. The Dodgers are 4-0 against Pittsburgh in 2021.
Monday’s loss was Pittsburgh’s 13th in its past 15 games.
“We did a good job keeping a really good lineup off-balance all day long,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said afterward. “We ended up in the middle of the plate, missed location both times. That ended up being the difference in the game.”
Another difference was Pittsburgh was 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 10 runners on base.
Meanwhile, the Dodgers have won 11 of their past 14 games and stand four games behind the first-place San Francisco Giants in the National League West.
McKinney was in right field Monday because Mookie Betts remains sidelined with a hip injury.
McKinney said he doesn’t mind being viewed as an unlikely hero as part of a team with many high-paid stars.
“This team is a great group of guys,” McKinney said in his postgame press conference. “There is so much hard work and effort. It is so much fun to come to the ballpark every day.”
McKinney’s homer was his first in 20 games since joining the Dodgers. He has nine overall this season, counting stints with the Milwaukee Brewers and New York Mets.
“I was glad to get that one out,” McKinney said. “Everybody battled really hard, and I’m glad we could pull this out for the win.”
Dodgers left-hander David Price (4-1, 3.60 ERA) will make his 10th start of the season on Tuesday.
Price has been used 21 times in relief but often has been employed as a starter recently with Clayton Kershaw (elbow) on the injured list and Trevor Bauer on administrative leave.
Price pitched four innings against the Philadelphia Phillies last Wednesday and wasn’t involved in the decision of a game Los Angeles won 8-2. He allowed two runs and five hits, with one walk and one strikeout.
Price, who will turn 36 on Aug. 26, allowed one hit in two scoreless innings of relief against the Pirates on June 9.
His lone other appearance against Pittsburgh came on June 25, 2014, when he was a member of the Tampa Bay Rays. He picked up the win after surrendering one run on five hits with one walk and 11 strikeouts in 8 1/3 innings.
Right-hander Wil Crowe (3-7, 5.27) will start for Pittsburgh. He has struck out 75 in 80 1/3 innings this season but has served up 18 homers.
The 26-year-old Crowe kept the ball in the park in his last turn but lost to the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday. He gave up one run on four hits over 4 2/3 innings.
In his previous turn, Crowe gave up three homers in a loss to the Cincinnati Reds. He allowed seven runs (three earned) and eight hits over four innings.
Yoshi Tsutsugo signed with the Pirates before Monday’s game and sliced a double into the left-field corner as a pinch hitter in the ninth inning. Tsutsugo was released by the Dodgers on Saturday.
–Field Level Media