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Los Angeles at San Diego

San Diego
W: C. Billingsley (1-0) L: E. Stults (1-1) S: B. League (3)
HR: LAD - C. Crawford (1),A. Ellis (1)   SD - None

Dodgers 4, Padres 3

CBSSports.com wire reports

SAN DIEGO -- After floundering in Boston in 2011 and playing only 31 games last year due to injuries, Carl Crawford is off to the fast start he knew he needed to have with the Dodgers.

Crawford led off with an opposite-field home run and A.J. Ellis added a two-run shot to back Chad Billingsley's strong season debut and lead the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 4-3 victory against the San Diego Padres on Wednesday night.

Crawford hit a home run to left field on the second pitch from Eric Stults (1-1). He tripled off the left-field wall with one out in the fifth and scored on Mark Ellis' single through a drawn-in infield to make it 4-1.

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"I just want to play baseball," said Crawford, who came over from the Red Sox along with Adrian Gonzalez and Josh Beckett on Aug. 25. "That's all I want to do, man. I'm not trying to prove nothing to me, you, Boston, whoever. I just want to play good baseball this year."

Crawford had reconstructive elbow surgery two days before the trade and didn't get to play for the Dodgers last year.

He's hitting .464 (13 of 28). This was Crawford's fourth consecutive game with multiple hits and his sixth in seven starts this season.

"You never know how it's going to go. You hope for the best," he said. "The last two years the way things were going for me it's kind of a surprise, but a good surprise. It's definitely fun. Even if I wouldn't have had a fast start like I'm having now, everything is just good for me right now."

Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said he certainly didn't expect Crawford to hit this well at the start of the season.

"I've seen how good Carl has been in the past and the last two years have been spotty as far as injuries and things like that, but I think we pretty much knew what he could do," Mattingly said.

Billingsley (1-0) opened the season on the disabled list after bruising his right index finger during a bunting drill on March 15. He held San Diego to one run and five hits in six innings, with three strikeouts and three walks.

"It definitely felt great to be back out there," said Billingsley, who went on the disabled list Aug. 25 last year with pain in his right elbow. "C.C., the first at-bat of the game, he gets us a one-run lead and gave me a little cushion early."

Billingsley "was sharp with his fastball," San Diego's Yonder Alonso said. "He was controlling the strike zone early in the game. He was throwing to both sides and did a good job of keeping the ball down."

A.J. Ellis hit a home run to left with one out in the second. Luis Cruz was aboard on a single.

Brandon League earned his third save in as many chances, but only after allowing two runs on three hits in the ninth. The second run that inning scored when Chris Denorfia struck out but reached on a passed ball by A.J. Ellis.

The Padres have given up 13 home runs in eight games.

"Eric hung in there but they didn't miss with a couple of mistakes," Padres manager Bud Black said.

San Diego's Nick Hundley had four hits to tie his career high.

Stults allowed four runs and eight hits in five innings, struck out four and walked none. Every Dodgers regular except Adrian Gonzalez had at least one hit off Stults.

Billingsley's only rough inning was the fourth. Will Venable drew a leadoff walk and scored on an RBI double by Denorfia. Yonder Alonso walked but was erased on a double play and Alexi Amarista flied out to end the inning.

Denorfia started in place of left fielder Carlos Quentin, who was hit by a pitch on the right forearm in San Diego's 9-3 win Tuesday.


Black said Quentin was still a little sore Wednesday. ... After sitting out the last two games, Cruz singled in the second to snap an 0-for-17 slump to start the season. ... Andre Ethier has a hit in his first seven games this season to extend his hitting streak to 10 games. ... Padres 3B Chase Headley took batting practice for the first time since breaking his left thumb in a spring game on March 17. He said he felt no pain. Headley will likely go on a rehab assignment in the minors before being activated. ... The series concludes Thursday night when Dodgers RHP Zack Greinke (1-0, 0.00 ERA) faces RHP Jason Marquis (0-1, 3.00). ... Black had Mark Kotsay pinch-hit for 2B Alexi Amarista in the eighth. Kotsay remained in the game at 1B, forcing Black to move Alonso to 2B in the top of the ninth. After Gonzalez singled to right past the diving Alonso, he and 3B Jedd Gyorko swapped positions. They switched back after Ethier was hit by a pitch to load the bases.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game
Los Angeles

C. Crawford
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
San Diego

N. Hundley
AB 4
R 1
H 4
HR 0

Related Video

Los Angeles Dodgers
Carl Crawford, LF4221111 .464
    Kenley Jansen, P0000000 .000
    Brandon League, P0000000 .000
Mark Ellis, 2B5021013 .357
Matt Kemp, CF5020011 .167
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B5010001 .393
Andre Ethier, RF3010102 .320
Luis Cruz, 3B5120006 .091
A.J. Ellis, C5112027 .200
Justin Sellers, SS3020101 .190
Chad Billingsley, P2000021 .000
    Ronald Belisario, P0000000 .000
   a- Skip Schumaker, PH-LF1000010 .000
a-struck out for Belisario in the 8th
3B - Carl Crawford (1, Stults)
HR - Carl Crawford (1, Stults), A.J. Ellis (1, Stults)
SH - Chad Billingsley (1)
RBI - Carl Crawford (1), Mark Ellis (2), A.J. Ellis 2 (3)
Team LOB - 12
DP - Ellis-Sellers-Gonzalez, Sellers-Gonzalez
PB - A.J. Ellis (2)
Los Angeles Dodgers
Chad Billingsley (W,1-0) 6511330 1.50
Ronald Belisario (H,2) 1100020 2.25
Kenley Jansen (H,3) 1200010 0.00
Brandon League (S,3) 1321010 2.25
Pitches-Strikes - Chad Billingsley 94-54, Ronald Belisario 10-9, Kenley Jansen 21-15, Brandon League 34-23
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chad Billingsley 7-6, Brandon League 1-2
Batters Faced - Chad Billingsley 24, Ronald Belisario 4, Kenley Jansen 5, Brandon League 7
San Diego Padres
Everth Cabrera, SS4120112 .233
Will Venable, RF4111123 .227
Chris Denorfia, LF5021011 .444
Yonder Alonso, 1B-2B^3B^2B4020112 .267
Jedd Gyorko, 3B-2B^3B4000004 .233
Alexi Amarista, 2B3000012 .120
   a- Mark Kotsay, PH-1B1000002 .545
Cameron Maybin, CF4000000 .083
Nick Hundley, C4140000 .318
Eric Stults, P0000000 .000
   b- Cody Ransom, PH1000001 .000
    Anthony Bass, P0000000 .000
   c- Jesus Guzman, PH1000011 .250
    Brad Brach, P0000000 .000
    Joe Thatcher, P0000000 .000
   d- John Baker, PH1000001 .333
a-flied out for Amarista in the 8th
b-popped out for Stults in the 5th
c-struck out for Bass in the 7th
d-flied out for Thatcher in the 9th
2B - Chris Denorfia (3, Billingsley), Nick Hundley (2, League)
SH - Eric Stults (1)
RBI - Will Venable (5), Chris Denorfia (3)
2-OUT RBI - Will Venable (4)
Team LOB - 10
Outfield Assists - Chris Denorfia 1
San Diego Padres
Eric Stults (L,1-1) 5844042 3.60
Anthony Bass 2200330 4.15
Brad Brach 1100010 10.38
Joe Thatcher 1200000 9.00
IBB - Crawford by Anthony Bass, by Ethier
HBP - Ethier (by Joe Thatcher)
Pitches-Strikes - Eric Stults 101-68, Anthony Bass 43-21, Brad Brach 18-12, Joe Thatcher 30-19
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Eric Stults 7-4, Anthony Bass 2-1, Brad Brach 1-0, Joe Thatcher 1-2
Batters Faced - Eric Stults 23, Anthony Bass 11, Brad Brach 3, Joe Thatcher 6
Game Information
Attendance - 22843
Game Time - 3:22
Temperature - 67
Umpires - Home - Chris Conroy, First Base - Sam Holbrook, Second Base - Paul Nauert, Third Base - Andy Fletcher