LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Dodgers have had little success against Cliff Lee. Things were no different for the NL West champions on Monday night.
The Dodgers managed only four hits against the 13-year veteran left-hander during his eight innings on the mound and struck out 10 times in a 7-0 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies. Three of those hits went to the first five batters, as Lee retired 21 of the last 22 he faced.
"He's always been tough and he's always thrown the baseball where he wanted it to, but it looks like he's using more pitches now," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He's usually was pretty simple — beat you with stuff and location. And now using more pitches and not throwing quite as hard. But obviously, we see that doesn't matter a whole lot."
Left-hander Paul Maholm (0-2) gave up five runs and eight hits over five innings and committed a throwing error in the fifth that gave the Phillies an unearned run.
"If you're pumping strikes like Cliff was, sometimes you get the benefit of the doubt. I wasn't doing it and so the close pitches didn't go my way," Maholm said. "But the strike zone was the least of my worries."
Maholm used 29 of his 107 pitches to get out of the first after a leadoff walk to Tony Gwynn Jr. Jimmy Rollins followed with a bloop single to right-center. Matt Kemp slowed up on the catchable ball when he saw right fielder Yasiel Puig coming hard. Both runners scored on Carlos Ruiz's double into the right field corner.
"Obviously going up against Cliff, you know you have to be on your game," Maholm said. "It was frustrating just going through a long first inning, battling, not having your stuff, and doing everything possible to get deep into the game. The bullpen needed a rest and unfortunately I didn't give it to them."
Puig tried to get one of the runs back in the bottom of the inning, but ran into an out trying to score from second on an infield hit up the middle by Adrian Gonzalez that extended his hitting streak to 16 games.
Second baseman Chase Utley fielded the ball behind the bag and looked straight at Puig, who ended up in a rundown. Ruiz took Utley's throw to the plate and chased Puig back to third before making a lunging tag for the third out with Kemp on deck.