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Los Angeles Dodgers start with a grand slam and keep going

By Forrest Lee, The Sports Xchange
Los Angeles Dodgers start with a grand slam and keep going
The Dodgers hit a grand slam in the first inning and never looked back as they pummeled the Pirates, 12-1. Photo by Los Angeles Dodgers/Twitter

LOS ANGELES -- Chris Taylor just wanted to put the bat on the ball. With the bases loaded, a single or a double would have been just fine.

Instead, Taylor smacked a grand slam that sparked a strong start for the Los Angeles Dodgers in a rout of the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday night.

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Taylor's slam and a home run by Yasiel Puig ignited a six-run first inning, and the Dodgers pounded the Pirates 12-1 at Dodger Stadium.

Dodgers starter Alex Wood (3-0) struck out a season-high 11 while issuing one walk and limiting the Pirates to two hits in five scoreless innings. It was the most strikeouts by Wood since he fanned 13 on May 21, 2016, against the San Diego Padres.

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Wood didn't allow a hit until Pittsburgh's Gregory Polanco singled in the fourth inning.

"I have the same mentality every time I go out, I'm just trying to compete and give our guys a chance to win as best as I can," said Wood, who improved to 8-2 with a 1.84 ERA in 18 career starts at Dodger Stadium. "I'm happy that we were able to get another win tonight."

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Taylor went 3-for-4 with four RBIs for the Dodgers (18-14), who won their third game in a row. Joc Pederson, who was 3-for-5, Yasmani Grandal and Enrique Hernandez drove in two runs each.

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Taylor smoked an 0-2 slider from Pittsburgh's Trevor Williams for his second career grand slam.

"Two strikes, I'm not looking for anything in particular," said Taylor, who tied his career best with three hits and is batting .395 with three home runs and 12 RBIs in 16 games since he was recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City on April 19. "Like I said, I was just trying to shorten up and put a ball in play."

It was a terrible outing for Williams, who started for the first time this season. Williams (1-2) was tagged for a career-worst eight runs (six earned) on seven hits with a walk and two strikeouts in three innings.

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"I made some mistakes out there and didn't executive some pitches that led to a big inning," said Williams, who hadn't started since Sept. 17, 2016, when he got a no-decision against the Cincinnati Reds. "I just have to do a better job of executing pitches and not making the same mistake. I let things get out of hand that first inning. I had a chance to stop the bleeding. Unfortunately, (Taylor) he hit it over the fence for four runs."

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Jose Osuna drove in the lone run with an RBI single in the sixth for the Pirates (14-18), who have lost four of their last six games.

Pederson singled home Andrew Toles for a 1-0 lead with one out in the first. Taylor followed with his shot to center for a 5-0 advantage. It was Taylor's third homer this season.

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Puig drilled a 1-1 Williams pitch into the seats in left for a solo blast and a six-run edge in the first. It was Puig's team-leading sixth home run of the season.

In the third, Grandal's two-run double increased the margin to 8-0.

Justin Turner's run-scoring single and an RBI double by Pederson in the fourth made it 10-0.

The Pirates fanned 17 times to tie a club record for a nine-inning game, matching the mark set June 18, 2013, against the Reds.

"The beauty of this game is that games like this only count as one loss," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "They don't count as two or three or four. They count as one." NOTES: Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said he offered "prayerful support" to RHP Jameson Taillon, who underwent surgery for suspected testicular cancer Monday. Hurdle said he had a meaningful discussion with Taillon on Saturday. Taillon has a 2-1 record with a 3.31 ERA in six starts. ... The Dodgers placed RHP Brandon McCarthy (left shoulder soreness) on the 10-day disabled list and recalled LHP Adam Liberatore from Triple-A Oklahoma City. ... Dodgers LHP Rich Hill (blister on middle pitching finger) will start a rehab assignment Wednesday for Class A Rancho Cucamonga in San Jose. ... Pittsburgh INF/OF Chris Bostick made his major league debut, going 0-for-2 with two strikeouts. ... Pirates RHP Ivan Nova (3-3, 2.14 ERA) will oppose Dodgers LHP Julio Urias (0-0, 0.84 ERA) on Tuesday. ... Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

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