LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers' offense kept on humming as home runs from Howie Kendrick, Yasmani Grandal and Justin Turner powered them to a 9-3 win over the Phillies on Tuesday night. With the Giants falling, 2-0, in Miami, the Dodgers (64-49) moved into a tie for first place in
LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers' offense kept on humming as home runs from Howie Kendrick, Yasmani Grandal and Justin Turner powered them to a 9-3 win over the Phillies on Tuesday night. With the Giants falling, 2-0, in Miami, the Dodgers (64-49) moved into a tie for first place in the National League West.
While starter Kenta Maeda didn't have one of his better nights, going just five innings and allowing three earned runs, the offense more than picked him up. And they did it quickly. After the Phillies jumped ahead, 2-0, in the second inning on Aaron Altherr's home run, Los Angeles put up crooked numbers for three consecutive innings.
"I thought he caught it at first, but I was just glad it kept rolling, so I'll take it," Kendrick said of his second-inning homer. "A lot of guys have been putting in the same work all year and you're starting to see the fruits of their labor. Hopefully, we can continue to do the same thing and keep the ball rolling."
Along with the home runs, Adrián González put up doubles in consecutive innings, his second game with multiple extra-base hits in three days.
The offensive explosion came entirely at the expense of Phillies starter Vince Velasquez, who allowed a career-high nine earned runs and saw his ERA increase from 3.22 entering Tuesday to 3.94.
"The whole mentality going into today's game was just attacking the hitters," Velasquez said. "And then it just went south from [the first inning]."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Shouldering the load: Grandal needed a moment in the ninth inning of Monday's game after a foul tip struck him on the shoulder, but he showed he was feeling quite all right in the third inning on Tuesday. The catcher took a 95 mph fastball 400 feet into the right-field stands to put Los Angeles up, 6-2. Since July 1, Grandal has hit .353/.476/.788 in 105 plate appearances.
"There's nothing much to it," Grandal said. "Just the fact that being healthy and have my bat speed back and relax at the plate. Just see the ball, hit the ball."
Vince's forgettable homecoming: Velasquez grew up in nearby Pomona, Calif., so he had a whole bunch of family and friends in attendance, but after he struck out the side in the first inning, things fell apart for him. He is the first Phillies' starter to allow nine earned runs in a start since David Buchanan allowed 11 in 1 2/3 innings in Arizona on Aug. 11, 2015. More >
"Everything was hard, hard, hard," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said of Velasquez's outing. "He had a pretty good fastball. We've seen him throw harder. He had plenty to get them out. But against a team like the Dodgers, especially against lefties, he's got such a good changeup that he didn't use. I think he should have used it more. I think he would have been more effective."
New guy left out: Every player in the Dodgers' starting lineup finished with a hit except one, and it wasn't Maeda, who doubled in the second inning. Josh Reddick finished the game hitless for the fifth time in his seven games with Los Angeles. He is now 2-for-27 with no extra-base hits as a Dodger.
Altherr steps up: Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said before the game that Altherr could move to center field at some point, but he needed to prove he could hit big league pitching first. Altherr hit his third homer of the season in the second inning, a two-run homer that gave the Phillies a 2-0 lead. More >
"We're as good as any lineup in the NL." -- Dodgers manager Dave Roberts on the club's offensive surge
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Altherr has not been in the big leagues long, but he has piled up extra-base hits: 24 of his 44 hits (54.5 percent) have gone for extra bases.
AFTER FURTHER REVIEW
Freddy Galvis singled in the second inning and soon stole second base with Cody Asche up to bat. The Dodgers challenged that Corey Seager's glove reached Galvis before Galvis reached second, but the safe call stood to give Galvis his 11th stolen base of the season. He would get No. 12 a batter later when he took third.
Phillies: Phillies right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (9-7, 3.72 ERA) faces the Dodgers in Wednesday afternoon's series finale at Dodger Stadium. He will try to do something Zach Eflin and Velasquez could not do in the first two games of the series: have a quality start. Eflin allowed seven runs in three innings Monday and Velasquez allowed nine runs in 4 1/3 innings Tuesday. First pitch is scheduled for 3:10 p.m. ET
Dodgers:Scott Kazmir will continue what has been an erratic first season with Los Angeles as he takes the mound in Wednesday's series finale. First pitch is scheduled for 12:10 p.m. PT.
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Jack Baer is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.
Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast.