LOS ANGELES (AP) — Dodgers manager Dave Roberts felt it was a perfect time to get Rich Hill out of the game.
No reason to push anyone these days.
Hill pitched two-hit ball into the sixth inning, helping the Dodgers beat the Giants 2-1 Saturday for their seventh consecutive victory.
Corey Seager had three hits and Cody Bellinger drove in two runs as major league-leading Los Angeles won for the 38th time in 44 games. At 73-31, the Dodgers are 42 games over .500 for the first time since finishing 102-60 in 1974.
“I think that’s what you see from this team every single day,” Hill said. “Guys are getting their work in, they’re staying true to the process to what they need to do to get better every single time they come to the field.”
Hill (8-4) struck out three and walked two in 5 2/3 innings. The oft-injured left-hander improved to 4-0 with a 1.45 ERA in five July starts.
Hunter Pence homered in the fourth and Gorkys Hernandez doubled in the fifth for San Francisco’s only hits against Hill. With Pence coming to the plate in the sixth, Roberts decided to bring in Pedro Baez.
“Where we’re at right now, every game is different, but I think for the next month and a half me, (pitching coach) Rick (Honeycutt) are aware of the pitchers, their usage, and trying to make sure guys are fresh,” Roberts said. “Right now, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to push these guys.”
Hill threw 86 pitches after totaling at least 92 in each of his previous nine starts. But he said he understood the move.
“There’s a lot of season left,” Hill said.
Kenley Jansen worked the ninth for his 26th save in 27 opportunities, striking out Jae-Gyun Hwang with runners on first and second for the final out. The closer also allowed a leadoff single to Miguel Gomez, but he was promptly erased when Pence bounced into a double play.
Seager doubled in the first and third innings, scoring each time on a Bellinger single . Seager also singled in the fifth for his 29th multihit game this season.
Bellinger made his major league debut on April 25, but he leads the Dodgers with 69 RBIs. He has driven in two or more runs in 18 games.
“They feed off one another,” Roberts said of Seager and Bellinger. “You’re looking at two guys who can hurt you, do damage with slugging. They’re both very good hitters.”
Giants starter Ty Blach (6-7) allowed eight hits in seven innings while falling to 2-5 in nine starts since June 7.
“Blach did a great job, gave us a chance,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “I really didn’t think he had his best stuff but this kid’s got all the confidence, he’s not afraid.”
Dodgers right fielder Yasiel Puig robbed Buster Posey with a sliding catch in the second inning after a long run to the right field line. The baseball nearly popped out of Puig’s glove as he tumbled into the wall, but he managed to bring it in after a bobble.
Los Angeles third baseman Justin Turner got into the act in the fourth. He backhanded Denard Span’s grounder after taking several steps toward the line behind third base. Falling into foul ground, Turner still managed to put enough on the throw to get Span at first.
“Yasiel’s catch was great out there, and JT making the play at third was fantastic,” Hill said.
Out since June 12 with lower back soreness, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez is one step away from a rehab stint. Gonzalez is scheduled to hit in a simulated game Sunday.
Roberts thinks Gonzalez’s rehab stint will begin next week at Triple-A Oklahoma City before finishing at Single-A Rancho Cucamonga.
“A lot of that is the logistics of it, the travel, things like that,” Roberts said. “I’m not exactly sure what day, but he’s getting close to heading out.”
Giants: RHP Mark Melancon (right pronator strain) is on the verge of a rehab stint that figures to be at least two to three appearances before he’ll return as closer, said Bochy. … C Nick Hundley was scratched. He complained of headaches when he arrived at Dodger Stadium after taking a foul ball on the mask Friday night.
Dodgers: RHP Brandon McCarthy (blister on right third finger) is scheduled throw a bullpen session on Sunday.
Giants: LHP Madison Bumgarner (1-4, 3.38 ERA) will start the series finale Sunday, swapping assignments with Matt Cain, who will pitch Monday night at Oakland. Bumgarner makes his fourth start since being sidelined by injuries stemming from a dirt bike accident.
Dodgers: LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-6, 4.17 ERA) makes his 15th start of the season. He pitched five innings of two-run ball in a no-decision against Minnesota on Monday.
This version corrects to Giants starter Ty Blach allowed eight hits instead of seven.
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