Giants

Belt homers, Giants play to tie with Dodgers

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Belt homers, Giants play to tie with Dodgers

BOX SCOREGLENDALE, Ariz. -- Brandon Belt lofted a two-run homer and the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers quit after nine innings tied at 3-3 Saturday night.A brisk win helped Belt's homer clear the left-field fence."I hit it pretty good, but I popped it up a little more than I thought," Belt said. "I'd rather get lucky and be 1 for 3 rather than be unlucky and be 0 for 3."Belt drove in all three Giants' runs. He hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game 3-3 in the eighth inning. He drove in Gregor Blanco, who had doubled.

Blanco went 2 for 4 to raise his average to .444 and scored two runs.Luis Cruz belted a homer to left field that broke a 2-2 tie in the sixth for the Dodgers.Los Angeles starter Aaron Harang gave up seven hits and two runs, including Belt's homer, in four innings."It's hard to judge because of the way the wind is blowing," Harang said. "You come out of a 2-1 game in those conditions. ... I felt good."There are a few ballparks in the league where you'll get these kind of conditions. ... Fly balls are carrying or the wind is knocking them down. You get your pitches out of it, try to work on throwing strikes."Fielders such as Belt, a first baseman in the past who is learning left field, had the same sort of intrigue."I'm just learning how to get my routes down and take good angles. You add the wind factor, and it makes it a lot tougher."Starter Brian Burres limited the Dodgers to one run and three hits in three innings.A sellout crowd of 13,655, a Cactus League record, attended in the breezy conditions. A storm approaching from the west threatens Cactus League games on Sunday, including a sellout at Camelback Ranch in which the Dodgers host the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim."From what we've heard we'll be able to play," manager Don Mattingly said. "If we don't play, we'll hit in the cages and work out."The Dodgers had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the ninth.Josh Fields singled to open the inning, then Cruz sacrificed him to second. The Giants intentionally walked Jeff Baisley, then Matt Angle grounded out, advancing the runners.Then Matt Yourkin, who pitched three scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 2.25, struck out Justin Sellers to end the game.Dodgers infielder Ivan DeJesus Jr. injured his side while swinging. He will undergo tests, Mattingly said."He's been looking great," Mattingly said of DeJesus, who has been stellar in the infield.NOTES: Don Newcombe, the Dodgers' special adviser to the chairman, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Newcombe threw a strike. ... Vin Scully, who hadn't broadcast a game since Sept. 28, worked Saturday night's game for Dodgers' TV. Scully, who is entering his 63rd season as a Dodger broadcaster, said he needed some "batting practice." Scully, 84, is eliminating games in Colorado from his schedule this season "just to cut back a little bit more on the traveling." He will broadcast games in California and Arizona, more than 100 games in all. The first three innings will be simulcast on radio.

Dodgers crush Cubs in Game 5 to reach 2017 World Series

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Dodgers crush Cubs in Game 5 to reach 2017 World Series

BOX SCORE

CHICAGO -- Enrique Hernandez put a Hollywood ending on an LA story three decades in the making.

Fueled by Hernandez's home run trilogy, Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers are finally going to the World Series.

Hernandez homered three times and drove in seven runs, Kershaw breezed through six crisp innings and Los Angeles ended the Chicago Cubs' title defense with an 11-1 victory in Game 5 of the NL Championship Series on Thursday night.

"It feels good to hear World Series," Kershaw said. "It's been a long time coming for this team."

After years of playoff heartache, there was just no stopping this group of Dodgers. With Kershaw firing away at the top of a deep pitching staff and Justin Turner anchoring a tough lineup, one of baseball's most storied franchises captured its first pennant since Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda managed Los Angeles to its last championship in 1988.

The Dodgers will host the New York Yankees or Houston Astros in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday night. The Yankees have a 3-2 lead in the ALCS heading into Game 6 at Houston on Friday night, so one more New York win would set up another chapter in an old October rivalry between the Yankees and Dodgers.

The Dodgers made the playoffs eight times in the previous 13 seasons and came up short each time, often with Kershaw shouldering much of the blame. The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner took the loss when Los Angeles was eliminated by the Cubs in Game 6 of last year's NLCS at Wrigley Field.

He was just OK in his first two starts in this year's postseason, but Los Angeles' loaded lineup picked him up each time. Backed by Hernandez's powerful show in Chicago, Kershaw turned in an efficient three-hit performance with five strikeouts in his sixth career playoff win - matching Burt Hooton for the franchise record.

When Kenley Jansen retired Willson Contreras on a liner to shortstop for the final out, the party was on. The Dodgers poured out of the dugout and mobbed their dominant closer near the mound, and a small, but vocal group of Los Angeles fans gathered behind the visitor's dugout and chanted "Let's go Dodgers! Let's go Dodgers!"

Report: Giants interview Chili Davis about becoming new hitting coach

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Report: Giants interview Chili Davis about becoming new hitting coach

Chili Davis spent the first seven years of his big league career with the Giants where he made two All-Star teams and hit 101 home runs. 

Fast forward 37 years from his debut in 1981, and Davis may now be the one teaching Giants how to hit balls over the wall in 2018. The Giants met with Davis Thursday about becoming the team's new hitting coach, according to The Mercury News

The only problem is, there is no open vacancy on the Giants' coaching staff. 

Current hitting coach Hensley Meulens is a candidate for the Tigers' head coaching vacancy, but reports surfaced Thursday that former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire will take that role. Meulens could become a candidate to manage another team or take a different spot on the Giants' staff. 

The Giants' offense sputtered in 2017. Overall, the offense ranked 23rd in batting average (.249), 29th in runs scored (639) and last in home runs (128). By comparison, the Pirates were the next worst team at hitting home runs in 2017 and still launched 23 more long balls than the Giants. 

Over his 19-year career, Davis hit 350 home runs. He has spent the last three years as the Red Sox's hitting instructor.