LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ricky Nolasco pitched eight innings of three-hit ball, Hanley Ramirez and Andre Ethier hit solo homers and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 4-0 on Wednesday.
The first-place Dodgers earned their 21st victory in August, tying the Los Angeles record for most wins in a calendar month. They avoided a second straight series loss by taking two of three from the last-place Cubs.
Nolasco (11-9) struck out a season high-tying 11, walked one and permitted only one runner to get reach third base. Acquired in a trade with Florida in early July, the right-hander won his sixth straight start in August.
Dodgers rookie Yasiel Puig left after four innings with no immediate explanation. He didn’t slide into second base to try to break up a double play in the first inning and visibly reacted after striking out in the third.
Edwin Jackson (7-14) gave up four runs – two earned – and six hits against his old team. He struck out five and walked two.
The Cubs have lost nine of 12, and went 2-4 on their West Coast trip. Manager Dale Sveum was ejected in the bottom of the first for arguing a checked swing by Puig with first base umpire Lance Barksdale.
Playing their only midweek home day game this season, the Dodgers scored their first two runs on the homers by Ramirez with two outs in the first and Ethier in the fourth. The 88-degree heat and searing sun had fans crowding under the overhangs in the outfield pavilions and upper deck.
The Dodgers extended their lead to 4-0 in the fifth. After a pair of leadoff singles, Nolasco bunted and Jackson threw the ball past third base. One run scored on the error and Skip Schumaker, who replaced Puig in right field, hit an RBI single.
Kenley Jansen struck out three in a hitless ninth for the Dodgers.
NOTES: The Dodgers’ franchise record for wins in a calendar month is 25, set by Brooklyn in July 1947. … Chicago fell to 9-17 in Jackson’s 26 starts. … After giving up just 11 homers in his previous 144 innings, Jackson allowed two in his first four innings against the Dodgers. … The Cubs concluded their schedule against NL West teams with their final road game outside their division. They will travel exclusively within the NL Central in September for the first time since 1997. … The Cubs return to Wrigley Field on Friday having lost 16 of their last 19 games at home.