Dodgers Provide All The Offense In Opening Win Over Angels

Tony Gwynn Jr. had three hits and three walks.

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Dee Gordon Shines, Even With Possible Demotion Looming

The good news for Dee Gordon Friday night was that he put his two main skills, speed and defense, on display, in the Dodgers' 5-0 win over the Angels in Anaheim. The bad news for Gordon, however, is that he might not be with the big club through the weekend. Ah, the life of a young player with options.

Rafael Furcal had his final rehab game tonight with Class A Rancho Cucamonga, and he is slated to return to the Dodgers as soon as Sunday. The obvious roster move is sending Gordon back to Triple A, and it's hard to argue since Gordon is hitting .241/.259/.291 in 21 games, with just two walks, and 16 strikeouts, in 82 plate appearances. However, Gordon has still provided moments of excitement, including tonight.

In the seventh inning, Dee Gordon reached base on a force play, then proceeded to steal second, third, and home, though he didn't get credit for the steal of third since it was technically on a pickoff throw to first base. Still, it was very exciting play nonetheless. "Dee has extraordinary speed, and it allows you to do extraordinary things," said Tony Gwynn Jr., who also stole a base tonight in addition to reaching base six times. To top things off, Gordon made a fantastic stab in short center field to rob Erick Aybar of a hit in the ninth inning.

Even if Gordon gets optioned, it likely won't be for long. The Dodgers need to see if Furcal is healthy. Not necessarily because they can make a run toward the playoffs, but rather, so Furcal can prove he is healthy for potential trade suitors before the July 31 trade deadline.

For more news and information on tonight's game, or on the two teams, be sure to read the SB Nation blogs Halos Heaven and True Blue LA.

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Gwynn, Miles Provide Offense, Kuroda Provides Pitching In Dodgers' 5-0 Win Over Angels

Taking the old baseball cliche "one day at a time" to the extreme, the Dodgers scored one run at a time to beat the Angels 5-0 Friday night in Anaheim, to capture the opener of the Freeway Series. The Dodgers scored single runs in each of the first four innings tonight, which was more than enough to back Hiroki Kuroda. The right-hander pitched seven scoreless innings to pick up his first win since May 17.

Tony Gwynn Jr. and Aaron Miles led the way for the Dodgers on offense, who saw a total of 21 men reach base. Gwynn led off for the Dodgers, and all he did was reach base six times, with two singles, a double, and three walks. His father, Tony Gwynn Sr. never reached base six times in a nine-inning game. Miles, who led the National League with a .419 batting average in June, picked up where he left off tonight with four more hits and a walk in five plate appearances. Miles has 29 hits in his last 59 at-bats.

Torii Hunter was hit by a pitch in the first inning, one of four HBP on the night (two by each team). Hunter left the game before the top of the second inning, with a contusion in his left hand. He was taken for precautionary ex-rays. Tyler Chatwood, who allowed just one run in seven innings last Saturday at Dodger Stadium, was not so productive tonight. The rookie allowed 12 hits and four runs in five innings of work, and got hung with the loss.

Kuroda was 0-6 in his last seven starts despite a 3.54 ERA during that span. Tonight matched the same number of runs of support for Kuroda than he received in his last five games combined, when he was in the game. Ethier added two hits for the Dodgers, including his 21st double of the season.

For more news and information on tonight's game, or on the two teams, be sure to read the SB Nation blogs Halos Heaven and True Blue LA.

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Angels Vs. Dodgers: Friday Freeway Series Lineups

The Angels and Dodgers renew their Freeway Series rivalry for the second consecutive weekend, with this three-game set beginning Friday night in Anaheim. Tyler Chatwood gets the call for the Angels, against Hiroki Kuroda of the Dodgers. Here are tonight's starting lineups:

Dodgers (36-46)

Gwynn LF
Blake 3B
Ethier RF
Kemp CF
Loney 1B
Miles 2B
Oeltjen DH
Ellis C
Gordon SS

Trent Oeltjen, who has reached base in seven of his last eight plate appearances (a home run, a triple, three singles, and two walks), gets the start tonight at designated hitter.

Angels (42-40)

Izturis 3B
Hunter RF
Abreu DH
Wells LF
Kendrick 2B
Aybar SS
Trumbo 1B
Conger C
Bourjos CF

Tonight's 7:05 p.m. PDT game will be televised on both Fox Sports West (Angels) and Prime Ticket (Dodgers). For more news and information on tonight's game, or on the two teams, be sure to read the SB Nation blogs Halos Heaven and True Blue LA.

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Angels Vs. Dodgers: Freeway Series Battle Moves To Anaheim

One week after coming a mere inches away from sweeping the Dodgers in Los Angeles, the Angels are home in Anaheim looking for another series win against their southern California interleague rivals. The Angels have won three straight games, six of their last seven contests, and have won five straight series. Coming off a home sweep of the Nationals, the Angels are 11-4 against National League teams this season.

The first two games of this series feature pitching rematches of last weekend, including tonight's opener. Tyler Chatwood pitched seven strong innings on Saturday in a 6-1 win at Dodger Stadium, outdeuling Hiroki Kuroda, who was pulled after five innings because the Dodgers needed offense down 2-1 at the time. Chatwood has lasted at least seven innings in four of his last five and five of his last seven starts.

The Angels are 26-14 all-time against the Dodgers in Anaheim, including 13-5 in the last six seasons. The Angels beat the Dodgers in two of three games last June. The Angels are 11-4 in their last 15 games and have moved within a game of the Rangers in the American League West.

Former Dodger pitcher and current broadcaster Fernando Valenzuela, who pitched two games for the Angels in 1991 after getting released by the Dodgers in spring training, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch to Angels manager Mike Scioscia. The longtime former Dodgers catcher caught 245 of Valenzuela's 453 career games.

Tonight's 7:05 p.m. PDT game will be televised on both Fox Sports West (Angels) and Prime Ticket (Dodgers). For more news and information on tonight's game, or on the two teams, be sure to read the SB Nation blogs Halos Heaven and True Blue LA.

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