By GREG BEACHAM
AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Chris Taylor had an early two-run single, Julio Urías pitched six scoreless innings of four-hit ball, and the Los Angeles Dodgers opened their annual rivalry series against the San Francisco Giants with a 3-1 victory Tuesday night.
Hanser Alberto doubled and scored in the eighth inning for Los Angeles, which won for the third time in four games despite a hair-raising ninth. Craig Kimbrel walked Wilmer Flores and gave up a two-out bunt single to Luis González before getting Luke Williams to ground into a forceout, earning his fifth save.
Carlos Rodón pitched six innings of three-hit ball, but took his first loss for the Giants in the first of 19 much-anticipated meetings between the California archrivals this season.
They’ll have to be tremendously entertaining to top last season’s series, which was among the best in the 133-season history of this bicoastal rivalry.
These powerhouses won a combined 213 games last season, with the 107-win Giants going 10-9 against LA — and ending the 106-win Dodgers’ eight-year reign in the NL West by that one victory. Los Angeles then edged San Francisco in a thrilling five-game Division Series, but Dodgers manager Dave Roberts could tell his team was drained by that effort before its NLCS loss to Atlanta.
Urías (2-1) largely cruised through this start, but was pulled after just 65 pitches. The 2020 World Series star issued no walks after walking eight in his first four starts.
Rodón (3-1) allowed just three total runs in his first four starts for the Giants, but Los Angeles got him in trouble during a 27-pitch second inning in which the left-hander walked two and threw a wild pitch before Taylor’s single to right-center.
Rodón otherwise allowed only doubles by Taylor and Trea Turner in his six innings. Turner went 1 for 3 with that 112-mph drive in his first career meeting with Rodón, his buddy and former teammate at North Carolina State.
San Francisco broke through in the seventh when Flores reached on third baseman Justin Turner’s terrible throw, advanced on a groundout and scored on pinch-hitter González’s sacrifice fly to left. Alex Vesia ended the rally by striking out Williams.
Los Angeles added a run in the eighth when Alberto doubled, advanced on Mookie Betts’ single and scored on José Álvarez’s wild pitch.
Joc Pederson was heavily booed before he struck out as a pinch-hitter in his first visit to Dodger Stadium with the Giants. The longtime Dodgers outfielder got a warmer reception when he returned with the Cubs and Braves last season.
Giants: OF LaMonte Wade Jr. is “physically ready to come off the injured list,” manager Gabe Kapler said. The team is waiting until Wade’s knee is sturdy enough to play nine innings. He could be activated Wednesday. … OF Mike Yastrzemski could return from the COVID-19 list Wednesday.
Roberts declined to reveal his starter for Wednesday’s game before the series opener, admitting to a little gamesmanship. LA will face former teammate Alex Wood (2-1, 4.19 ERA), who’s coming off his worst start of the season against Washington.
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