PITTSBURGH (AP) — Dan Haren's promising spring has morphed into a troubling summer. At this point, even he isn't sure when it is going to stop.
The right-hander dropped his fourth straight decision in Los Angeles' 6-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday night, leaving his status very much in doubt as the Dodgers prepare for the stretch drive.
"It's just really gotten away from me the last four times out," Haren said. "I don't what to say. I was having a great year. I felt great about everything, the way I was throwing the ball. But now everything has snowballed and everything that could have gone wrong has gone wrong."
Haren (8-8) is winless with a 9.47 ERA in July and he is well aware he has become the weak link on one of baseball's best pitching staffs. Though manager Don Mattingly said "it's not the right time to talk about (Haren's) future," Haren understands his grasp on his starting job is becoming tenuous.
"I'm going to do anything for the team," Haren said. "If that means I get skipped, I totally understand. It's not like I'm going to march into the office and say, 'You can't do that.' I'm new here. I need to earn their respect."
The Pirates wasted little time getting to Haren. Josh Harrison's two-run double down the left field line capped a four-run outburst that gave Francisco Liriano (2-7) all the offense he would need to win for the first time since May 30.
Pittsburgh improved to 5-1 since the All-Star break to move a season-high seven games over .500 (54-47).
Travis Snider added two hits, including his fifth homer, for the Pirates. Liriano allowed one run on four hits over seven innings to earn his first regular-season home victory in nearly a year.
"I'm not at the point I want to be yet but everything is getting better and everything is moving forward," Liriano said.
For Haren, not so much.
Two singles and a walk in the first loaded the bases with one out before Haren walked Russell Martin on a full count to hand the Pirates the lead. Ike Davis followed with a sacrifice fly, and Harrison sent a stinging double to left to push the advantage to 4-0.
"The first pitch of a game was a strike and then they swing at the next three pitches and I stepped back after that and said to myself that I needed to make better pitches," Haren said. "But then I nibbled around guys and couldn't throw a strike. I just couldn't do anything right."
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