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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, June 16th (All times Eastern)

Los Angeles Dodgers (29-38) at Pittsburgh Pirates (40-28), 1:35 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Los Angeles - Zack Greinke (3-1, 3.68) Pittsburgh - Gerrit Cole (1-0, 2.84)

(Sports Network) - The last time Zack Greinke was in a game, he was the recipient of a beanball that caused a benches-clearing brawl.

Greinke heads back to the mound Sunday afternoon when the Los Angeles Dodgers play the rubber match of their three-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Greinke played a factor into the fracas that erupted at Dodger Stadium Tuesday night in a game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. He drilled Miguel Montero in the back in the seventh inning -- retaliation for Dodgers rookie Yasiel Puig having been hit in the face by a pitch the previous frame -- and in the bottom half Diamondbacks starter Ian Kennedy plunked Greinke in the shoulder/head area to ignite the skirmish.

Greinke, who is 1-0 over his last four starts, allowed two runs on two hits in seven innings in the Dodgers' eventual 5-3 win. He's 5-1 with a 4.85 ERA in seven career starts against the Pirates.

Gerrit Cole gets his second career start today for the Pirates. The top overall pick of the 2011 draft, the righty limited the San Francisco Giants to a pair of runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings of an 8-2 victory Tuesday.

The Dodgers have won six straight series over the Pirates, including a three- game sweep at Dodger Stadium this season. The last series loss to the Pirates came in the season-opening set in 2010.

LA is just 4-12 on the road since May 3, but one of those wins came yesterday when Juan Uribe singled to left to drive in Andre Ethier with the go-ahead run in the 11th inning of a 5-3 victory.

Uribe then scored on pinch-hitter Nick Punto's double.

Brandon League was able to grab his 14th save of the season despite a shaky bottom of the 11th inning, in which he allowed runners on second and third with one out but escaped with no damage done.

The Pirates had a chance to win the game in the 10th after loading the bases with two outs, but Peter Moylan (1-0) was able to get pinch-hitter Michael McKenry to fly out.

Pittsburgh's Travis Snider came through with a one-out, game-tying home run in the bottom of the ninth off Kenley Jansen, who was unscored upon in his last 12 innings prior.

Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw yielded just one run on three hits while collecting eight strikeouts over seven solid innings, but hasn't earned a win in his last five starts.

"We need to start winning some games," Kershaw said. "That's pretty much the easiest thing to say, but we can't keep winning one, losing one. We've dug ourselves a hole so we're going to have to put some streaks together."

Brandon Cumpton was dinged for three runs on seven hits with five strikeouts over five frames in his major league debut. His five strikeouts came against the first six batters he faced.

"He threw strikes, mixed speeds and kept the ball down," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "He missed a couple of spots in the sixth, but it was a very professional job. I'm proud of him."

The Dodgers have won 13 of their last 15 games against the Pirates, including nine in a row at Dodger Stadium and seven of nine at PNC Park. LA is 29-14 all-time at PNC Park and 7-3 in the Steel City since Don Mattingly took over prior to the 2011 season.

06/16 10:27:55 ET