Pittsburgh (14-14) at Los Angeles (14-16)

Fair Currently: Los Angeles, CA
Temp: 68° F
  • Game info: 10:10 pm EDT Sat May 3, 2003
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Jeff Suppan had his perfect April spoiled by the Los Angeles Dodgers last weekend.

The right-hander hopes to get his revenge in May when the Pittsburgh Pirates continue a three-game series with Los Angeles at Dodger Stadium.

Suppan, who signed with the Pirates in the offseason after spending the previous four years in Kansas City, got off to a brilliant start, winning each of his first four starts with a 1.37 ERA.

The veteran right-hander took the mound with a chance to go 5-0 at PNC Park last Sunday, but was outpitched by Japanese left-hander Kazuhisa Ishii in a 6-2 setback.

“He didn’t have his best stuff,” said Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon after watching Suppan yield three runs and six hits over seven innings. “But he certainly pitched and kept us in the ballgame and gave us an opportunity to win. I was very encouraged by that.”

A workhorse in Kansas City, Suppan is one of only four pitchers in the majors to go at least 200 innings in each of the last four years, joining Mike Mussina, Randy Johnson and Tom Glavine.

He has gone at least six innings in each of his first five outings for the Royals.

Swept by Los Angeles last weekend, Pittsburgh pulled out a 5-3 victory in Tuesday’s series opener as Jason Kendall delivered a clutch RBI single in the seventh inning.

The Pirates scored four unearned runs on three Dodgers errors. Los Angeles had yielded just two unearned runs in its first 29 games.

Unable to take advantage of its home field, Pittsburgh boasts a 10-3 mark on the road, and is 4-0 on its 10-game road trip after dropping five in a row at PNC Park.

The Dodgers have lost two straight since winning five of six.

STANDINGS: Pirates - 3rd place, 3 GB, NL Central. Dodgers - 3rd place, 6 GB, NL West.

PIRATES PROBABLE STARTER: Suppan (4-1, 1.89 ERA). Suppan is 0-2 with a 7.36 ERA in two career starts against the Dodgers.

DODGERS PROBABLE STARTER: Darren Dreifort (1-3, 3.77 ERA). Dreifort was solid in his last outing, but didn’t receive any support in a 3-0 loss to Philadelphia on Monday. The right-hander, who missed all of last season after undergoing his second reconstructive elbow procedure, yielded two runs and six hits over a season-high seven innings. He also struck out a season-high 11 while walking one. Dreifort is 5-5 with a 6.36 ERA in 14 career appearances, including six starts, against Pittsburgh.

OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Pirates - Kendall, .313 avg.; Reggie Sanders, 5 HRs, 15 RBIs and 17 runs; Kenny Lofton, 5 SBs. Dodgers - Dave Roberts, .309 avg. and 10 SBs.; Adrian Beltre, 4 HRs; Shawn Green, 15 RBIs; Roberts and Green, 15 runs.

SEASON SERIES: Dodgers, 3-1.

STREAKS AND NOTES: Pirates - RHP Salomon Torres, who made his second start Friday night after replacing injured RHP Josh Fogg in the rotation, is expected to make two more starts before Fogg returns from the DL. … RHP Suppan has received first-inning run support in each of his first five outings with the Pirates. … C Kendall has struggled during his career against RHP Dreifort, batting just .143 (2-for-14). Dodgers - Dreifort is probably glad he won’t have to face OF Brian Giles (knee) Saturday. Giles is 5-for-9 with four homers and nine RBIs career against Dreifort. … OF Brian Jordan returned to the starting lineup Friday after missing six games with a sore throat. He went 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI. … OF-1B Darryl Ward, playing for the past week with an infected tooth, is scheduled to have his wisdom teeth pulled Monday in Los Angeles. The Dodgers will fly to New York without him, but should have him available Tuesday.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Pirates - 10-3 on the road; Dodgers - 7-7 at home.

INJURIES: Pirates - OF Giles (knee), 15-day DL; RHP Fogg (abdominal), 15-day DL; RHP Mike Lincoln (shoulder), 60-day DL; LHP Dave Williams (shoulder), 60-day DL; IF Pat Meares (hand), 60-day DL. Dodgers - OF Chad Hermansen (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Paul Shuey (knee), 15-day DL; LHP Derek Thompson (elbow), 60-day DL.

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Starting Pitchers

J. Suppan SD vs. D. Dreifort LAD
13-11 Record 4-4
4.19 ERA 4.03
110 K 67
51 BB 25
1.31 WHIP 1.38