HOUSTON,TX- APRIL 22: Matt Kemp #27 of the Los Angeles Dodgers misplays a line drive off the bat of Jason Castro #15 of the Houston Astros in the fourth inning on April 22, 2012 at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas. Castro made a triple out of the play.(Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Dodgers Vs. Astros: L.A. Sweep Attempt Falls Short In Houston

The Dodgers (12-4) have won four of their five series this season.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Final Score: Chad Billingsley Drubbed In 12-0 Loss

Chad Billingsley gave up nine runs and a pair of home runs on Sunday afternoon as the Los Angeles Dodgers sweep attempt fell short, as they were drubbed 12-0 by the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park in Houston. Jordan Schafer hit his first career grand slam for Houston.

The win snapped a three-game win streak for the Dodgers (12-4).

Carlos Lee hit a two-run home run in the first inning for Houston, and Jason Castro and Chris Johnson each added two hits and two runs scored for the Astros. All that offense backed Wandy Rodriguez (1-2), who pitched seven scoreless innings for the win.

Billingsley (1-2) allowed two home runs in the first two innings and was down 6-0. Billingsley allowed only four hits, but he also walked four and the team committed three errors in what was really a laugher.

Matt Kemp went 0-for-3 to snap his 10-game hitting streak. Down 10-0 in the sixth inning, both Kemp and Andre Ethier were removed from the game, the first time they have rested so far this season after playing the first 141 defensive innings of the year.

The Dodgers return home to host the Atlanta Braves for a three-game series beginning Monday night. Chris Capuano pitches for the Dodgers Monday night, facing Jair Jurrjens of the Braves.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Starting Lineups: Juan Uribe Back After 4 Games

Red-hot Matt Kemp and the Los Angeles Dodgers go for their fourth straight victory on Sunday and a sweep of the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Chad Billingsley goes for his third win of the season on the mound for the Dodgers, opposed by Wandy Rodriguez takes the hill for the Astros.

Billingsley is 4-0 with a 1.78 ERA in four career starts at Minute Maid Park.

Juan Uribe missed four straight games while dealing with a wrist injury, but is back in the starting lineup on Sunday against the left-handed Rodriguez. A.J. Ellis, who has started 12 of the first 15 games behind the plate, gets the day game after the night game off as the Dodgers open a homestand Monday night back in Los Angeles. Here are the starting lineups for the series finale in Houston:

Dodgers (12-3)

Gordon SS
Ellis 2B
Kemp CF
Rivera 1B
Ethier RF
Hairston LF
Uribe 3B
Treanor C
Billingsley P

Astros (5-10)

Schafer CF
Lowrie SS
Martinez LF
Lee 1B
Bogusevic RF
Johnson 3B
Castro C
Altuve 2B
Rodriguez P

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Game Preview: Matt Kemp, Chad Billingsley Go For Sweep In Houston

Chad Billingsley takes the mound on Sunday afternoon as the Los Angeles Dodgers go for a series sweep of the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. The Dodgers have won three straight games, including a 3-1 win Friday and a 5-1 victory on Saturday night in Houston.

Wandy Rodriguez starts on Sunday for the Astros (5-10), who have lost nine of their last 11 games.

Billingsley is 2-0 with a 1.33 ERA through three starts this season, coming off a no-decision in his last start after allowing two runs in six innings in Milwaukee on Tuesday. Billingsley has three quality starts on the season and has 17 strikeouts with just one walk.

Matt Kemp has been on fire all season, including home runs in each of his last three games. Kemp is hitting .474 on the season (27-for-57) with an eye-popping 1.018 slugging percentage. Kemp has nine home runs on the season in just 15 games, the fastest player in franchise history to hit nine home runs.

The Dodgers (12-3) are tied with the Rangers for the best record in baseball, and this is their fourth attempt at a series sweep in five series this season.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Final Score: Clayton Kershaw, Matt Kemp Shine In 5-1 Win In Houston

Clayton Kershaw pitched seven scoreless innings and was backed by home runs by Matt Kemp and James Loney as the Los Angeles Dodgers cruised to their third straight victory, a 5-1 win over the Houston Astros Saturday night at Minute Maid Park.

Kershaw (1-0) was magnificent on Saturday with nine strikeouts in his first win of the season. He allowed three hits and two walks, one intentional, and lowered his ERA on the season to just 1.61. Kershaw batted for himself in the top of the eighth inning but the Dodgers plated two more runs for a 5-0 lead and at 105 pitches Kershaw didn't go out to the mound to pitch the eighth inning.

Loney homered in the second inning, his first of the season, to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. The Houston native has four doubles and a home run in his last seven starts for the Dodgers.

Kemp followed with a towering home run to left center field in the sixth inning, a two-run shot that was his ninth of the season, tops in the major leagues. No Dodger has ever been faster to nine home runs than Kemp, who has done so in just 15 team games to date. Kemp on the season is hitting .474/.523/1.018.

Not to be forgotten, Andre Ethier delivered a two-run single in the eighth inning. That gave Ethier, who is hitting .293/.349/.621, 21 runs batted in on the season, which is second in the majors to Kemp, who has driven in 22 runs.

Chad Billingsley gets the call on Sunday afternoon as the Dodgers go for the sweep, facing Wandy Rodriguez for Houston.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Starting Lineups: Dee Gordon Returns, Justin Sellers At Third Base

The Los Angeles Dodgers are in search of their third straight win Saturday night, and will do so with ace Clayton Kershaw on the mound, looking for his first win in four starts this season. Kyle Weiland starts for the Astros.

Juan Uribe is out for the Dodgers for a fourth straight game with a sore left wrist though he is expected to both be available to pinch hit Saturday and to start on Sunday. Justin Sellers gets the start at third base tonight after Jerry Hairston Jr. started the last three games at the hot corner.

Here are Saturday's starting lineups:

Dodgers (11-3)

Gordon SS
Kennedy 2B
Kemp CF
Ethier RF
Rivera LF
Loney 1B
Sellers 3B
Ellis C
Kershaw P

Astros (5-9)

Schafer CF
Altuve 2B
Martinez LF
Lee 1B
Lowrie SS
Johnson 3B
Downs RF
Snyder C
Weiland P

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Game Preview: Clayton Kershaw Seeks First Win

The Los Angeles Dodgers look for their third straight win on Saturday night as they face the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Clayton Kershaw makes his fourth start of the season and though he has pitched well so far he has yet to win a game.

"I don't care about winning individually. I want to pitch better," Kershaw said after his last no-decision on Sunday. "Wins will come with pitching better, and getting deeper into games and doing some of those things that right now aren't coming so easily."

Kershaw has a 2.35 ERA with four walks and 13 strikeouts and 15 1/3 innings.

The Dodgers will look to support Kershaw with Matt Kemp, who is laying waste to National League pitchers so far this season. Kemp has homered in two straight games and on the season is hitting .481 with a major league leading eight home runs, 16 runs and 20 RBI in just 14 games.

Kemp's slugging percentage on the season is 1.000. That is not a misprint.

Kyle Weiland starts for the Astros (5-9), who have lost eight of their last 10 games.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Final Score: Matt Kemp Homers Again In 3-1 Win

Matt Kemp continued his assault on National League pitching, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 3-1 win over the Houston Astros Friday night at Minute Maid Park. Kemp had three hits, including his major league leading eighth home run of the season, which gave the Dodgers a 2-0 lead in the first inning that they never relinquished.

Kemp has eight home runs in just 14 games on the season, tying Wally Moon (1961) for the most in Dodgers history at that point of the season. Kemp has 26 hits in 54 at-bats on the season, hitting an astonishing .481/.525/1.000.

Ted Lilly allowed one run in six innings while striking out five, though he struggled pretty much all night. Lilly walked six, including one intentional walk, the most he has had in a start in six years.

Andre Ethier knocked in the Dodgers' third run with a third-inning single, giving him 19 RBI on the season. The only man in the majors with more runs batted in than Ethier is Kemp, who has driven in 20.

The Dodgers (11-3) go for their third straight victory on Saturday, and send Clayton Kershaw to the mound, facing Kyle Weiland of Houston.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Minor League Pitcher Angel Guzman Suspended 50 Games For 'Drug Of Abuse'

Relief pitcher Angel Guzman had a decent spring for the Los Angeles Dodgers, allowing no runs in just over five innings during spring training, but he won't be pitching anytime soon. Guzman was suspended 50 games for a violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program for a drug of abuse, the commissioner's office announced on Friday.

It was the second violation for Guzman, who signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers on December 9 that included in invitation to major league camp at Camelback Ranch in Glendale, Arizona. Guzman put up a 2.95 ERA in 55 games in relief with 47 strikeouts in 61 innings for the Chicago Cubs in 2009, but underwent shoulder surgery that caused him to miss all of 2010.

Guzman, 30, was on the roster for the Triple A Albuquerque Isotopes but hadn't yet pitched for them this season. The Venezuelan native will begin serving his suspension immediately.

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros Starting Lineups: Slumping Dee Gordon Sits Out Opener In Houston

The Los Angeles Dodgers look for their second straight win on Friday night as they open a three-game series at Minute Maid Park against the Houston Astros. Ted Lilly makes his second start of the year for the Dodgers, while southpaw J.A. Happ starts for the Astros.

Dee Gordon has had a good year on the bases so far this season, stealing eight bases in 10 tries in 13 games, but his problem has been getting on base in the first place. Gordon is hitting just .192/.263/.231 so far, and he will get the night off Friday in Houston.

The right-handed batting Justin Sellers bats leadoff and plays shortstop in place of Gordon. Here are Friday's starting lineups:

Dodgers (10-3)

Sellers SS
M Ellis 2B
Kemp CF
Rivera LF
Ethier RF
Hairston 3B
Loney 1B
AJ Ellis C
Lilly P

Astros (5-8)

Maxwell CF
Altuve 2B
Martinez LF
Lee 1B
Johnson 3B
Lowrie SS
Boguesevic RF
Snyder C
Happ P

For more news and notes on Dodgers baseball, be sure to read True Blue LA.

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Dodgers Vs. Astros: Ted Lilly Starts Opener In Houston

The Dodgers are 4-3 on the road this season.

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