PHOENIX (AP) — Chris Taylor has been a spot starter at best in his young major league career, and he’d never had anything like the night he had on Friday.
Taylor, acquired in a trade with Seattle a month ago, fell a single shy of the cycle, and Bud Norris finally beat Arizona in the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 13-7 victory over the Diamondbacks.
Taylor, a utility infielder recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City on June 25, tripled in the fourth, doubled in the fifth and hit a grand slam in the sixth, his first career home run. He was out on a bunt in the eighth.
“It was a really a fun night,” he said, “a night I’ll always remember.”
Norris (5-7) was 0-7 with a 13.92 ERA in his career against the Diamondbacks entering the game, but ended the drought with the help of the Dodgers’ season-high 18 hits. Norris went five innings, allowing five runs and eight hits.
“It’s a tough place to pitch,” he said. “I personally have struggled here a few times, so I just wanted to go as deep as I could, kind of just leave all my pitches out there.”
Arizona’s Patrick Corbin (4-8) lasted four innings, giving up seven runs and seven hits.
“The biggest thing for me is not getting ahead like I have in the past,” he said. “It is leading to walks and hitter’s counts. It is something I need to get better on.”
The Diamondbacks took a 3-2 lead with three runs in the third, two on Michael Bourn’s triple, only to give it up in the Dodgers’ five-run fourth, with two scoring on Taylor’s triple. Yasiel Puig singled in two more before being thrown out trying to stretch it into a double.
Los Angeles loaded the bases with no outs in the sixth. Silvino Bracho struck out the next two but Taylor hit one into the seats beyond left field and the Dodgers led 12-4.
In the eighth, needing only a single, Taylor chose to lay down a bunt and was thrown out by the pitcher.
“I thought it was a good time, the situation,” he said. “They had the third baseman back and it’s always been a part of my game, regardless of the hits (I had). I think you put me in that situation again I’m still going to try it. It’s something I take pride in.”
The Dodgers led 12-7 at the time, not usually a situation that calls for a bunt, but manager Dave Roberts backed up Taylor’s decision.
“When you’re trying to win a game here in this ballpark you’ve got to play by different rules,” Roberts said. “It’s almost like you can’t score enough. So I thought it was a very heady play. If it was executed a little bit better he would have hit for the cycle.”
Eight Dodgers have hit for the cycle, only two since the franchise moved to Los Angeles in 1958: Wes Parker in 1970 and Orlando Hudson in 2009.
Third baseman Jake Lamb’s two errors in the third led to an unearned Los Angeles run.
The Diamondbacks fell to 15-33 at home.
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is inching closer to a return.
Kershaw, sidelined since June 27 with a mild disk herniation, will throw a simulated game in Los Angeles on Saturday. Roberts said Kershaw will throw 60 pitches.
Before he was hurt, Kershaw, as usual, was one of the game’s best pitchers, going 11-2 with a 1.79 ERA.
Dodgers: Roberts said a bone scan Friday of OF Andre Ethier’s right tibia showed the fracture “has not completely healed but it’s healed enough that Andre, to his tolerance, can continue to progress with baseball activity.” Roberts said the Dodgers will “ramp him up and see where it takes us.” LHP Alex Wood (posterior elbow) will pitch in the same simulated game as Kershaw.
Diamondbacks: RHP Zack Greinke (strained oblique) played catch Thursday night, the first time he’s done so since the injury.
Dodgers: RHP Brandon McCarthy (2-0, 2.70 ERA) makes his third start since coming back from Tommy John surgery, facing his former team for the first time.
Diamondbacks: RHP Archie Bradley (3-5, 4.64), coming off a strong but losing effort against San Francisco, makes the start for Arizona in the second game of the three-game series. Since being recalled from Triple-A Reno on May 29, Bradley ranks fourth in the NL in strikeouts.
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