(Sports Network) - After losing Friday's series opener versus the Arizona Diamondbacks, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Joe Torre was granted his first full losing season for the first time since 1984 with Atlanta.
Torre announced about a month ago he will be stepping down from his Hollywood post, and the Dodgers hope to rebound for the future Hall of Fame skipper tonight in the second test with the Diamondbacks at Chavez Ravine.
Los Angeles entered last night's game fresh off a three-game sweep of Colorado, but got a rough outing from starter John Ely, who was pounded for seven runs and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings. Matt Kemp homered and finished with two RBI for the punchless Dodgers, who will finish with a record below .500 for the first time since going 71-91 in 2005.
"Obviously it's frustrating to end the season like this, but I have something to build on," Ely said on LA's site. "I'll go home to Chicago for the first half of the winter, then come back here for the development camp in January and be in Phoenix early preparing for next year. It's one I'll be ready for."
Chad Billingsley will take the mound for LA tonight and he's only 2-6 with a 3.29 ERA in his last 10 starts, with the Dodgers going 2-8 in that span. He is coming off a no-decision at Arizona on Sunday and struck out 13 batters through seven innings of one-run ball to end a three-start losing streak.
The righty, who is 11-11 with a 3.61 ERA in 30 starts this season, owns an 8-5 record in 20 career games (18 starts) against the Diamondbacks.
Arizona was swept in three games at San Francisco before taking the opener of this series at Dodger Stadium.
Zach Kroenke won his first major league start and held Los Angeles to a run on two hits over five innings. Juan Gutierrez registered his 15th save with two strikeouts in the ninth inning.
"He did a great job," D'Backs interim manager Kirk Gibson said on the cub's site. "He hasn't pitched in a while. He kept the ball down, was effective to both sides of the plate. He threw strikes, the guys played well behind him."
Adam LaRoche hit a two-run homer and added an RBI double, while Chris Young, Kelly Johnson, Mark Reynolds and Brandon Allen each drove in a run for Arizona, which finished with a 10-4 advantage in hits.
Arizona will send Joe Saunders to the hill for the final time in 2010 and he's 3-6 with a 4.40 earned run average in 12 starts since coming over in a trade with the LA Angels of Anaheim.
Saunders recorded a no-decision versus Los Angeles on Sunday, as he lasted five innings in a 5-4 win and allowed two runs on six hits and two walks with six strikeouts.
The southpaw is 1-1 with a 3.80 ERA in four career starts against LA.
Los Angeles has dominated the season series with Arizona by an 11-5 count and is 5-2 in the six games played at Dodger Stadium. LA swept a three-game set in Hollywood from May 31 - June 2.