LOS ANGELES (AP) — Andre Ethier hit his second dramatic home run in three innings, a two-run shot in the 10th, and Howie Kendrick also homered to lead the Los Angeles Dodgers to a three-game Freeway Series sweep with a 5-3 victory over the sputtering Los Angeles Angels on Sunday.
Drew Rucinski (0-2) walked Adrian Gonzalez with one out in the 10th before Ethier deposited the rookie right-hander’s 1-1 pitch into the Angels’ bullpen in right field for his 12th homer and the Dodgers’ NL-leading 131st home run.
Pedro Baez (4-2) got the victory with 1 1-3 innings of relief.
Three days he was acquired from the Miami Marlins in a three-team, 13-player trade involving the Atlanta Braves, Mat Latos yielded a run and four hits over six innings in his Dodgers debut and departed with a 2-1 lead.
But Jim Johnson — also pitching his first game with the club after coming over in the same deal — gave up a tying homer by Kole Calhoun with one out in the eighth.
Ethier regained the lead in the bottom half with a towering drive to center field on a 3-1 pitch from Joe Smith — the first home run allowed by the right-hander in 43 innings this season.
But in the ninth, Chris Iannetta greeted Baez with a first-pitch RBI double over the head of center fielder Joc Pederson after pinch-hitter Shane Victorino led off the inning with a single against J.P. Howell. Closer Kenley Jansen got the day off after making a combined 50 pitches in the first two games of the series.
The Dodgers’ second-ever three-game sweep of the Angels put them a season-high 15 games over .500 (60-45) and increased their lead in the NL West to 2 1-2 games over the San Francisco Giants, who lost 2-1 at Texas.
The loss was the Angels’ season-worst sixth straight and ninth in 10 games, following a 17-3 stretch that matched the best 20-game span in franchise history. They are four games behind the first-place Houston Astros in the AL West. Houston opened this road trip with a three-game sweep. It’s their first winless trip of six or more games since 1999 (0-7).
Two of the three hits off Cory Rasmus were by Kendrick. He hit an opposite-field double off the fence in right-center his first time up, and opened the scoring in the third with his ninth homer of the season after a two-out infield single by Jimmy Rollins. Kendrick, who spent his nine previous big league seasons with the Angels, also homered in the series opener.
The Angels got only one baserunner as far as third base through the first five innings. The Angels got on the board in the sixth with a broken-bat RBI single by Albert Pujols.
The Dodgers are the fourth team in seven big league seasons for Latos, who was 1-5 with a 3.34 ERA in his six previous starts at Dodger Stadium with San Diego and Cincinnati.
Pederson was back in the lineup after getting benched by manager Don Mattingly for the previous two games. The rookie went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts, and has fanned 10 times in his last 13 at-bats to raise his total to an NL-worst 128. He is batting just .221 despite 21 home runs, and is 10 for 55 with three RBIs since playing in the All-Star Game.
Angels: Garrett Richards opposes reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber on Monday night in the opener of a three-game series with Cleveland.
Dodgers: LHP Alex Wood (7-6), obtained from Atlanta before the non-waiver trading deadline, will become the 30th pitcher used by the club this season and the 16th to start a game for them when they begin a three-game set against the Phillies on Tuesday night.
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