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In his low-key way [url=http://www.officialbruinsproonline.com/authentic-adidas-riley-nash-jersey]Riley Nash Jersey[/url] , Ross Stripling thinks of himself as ”an unknown guy having a random good year.”

Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp, third among National League outfielders in All-Star balloting, hopes he can take his 28-year-old teammate with him to the Midsummer Classic.

”He needs to be in there,” Kemp said. ”That boy is pitching his butt off. He’s been a big part of our success.”

Stripling tossed four-hit ball over 6 1/3 innings, Kemp and Enrique Hernandez went deep to give the Dodgers a major league-leading 32 homers this month, and Los Angeles beat the rival San Francisco Giants 3-2 on Friday night for their season high-tying fourth straight win.

The Dodgers stumbled through the first two months, losing six of their first 10 matchups with the Giants.

What a difference June has made. They are 10-2 this month and trail NL West-leading Arizona by 2 1/2 games.

”We’ve been playing the way we expect to play,” Kemp said.

Stripling (6-1) extended his career-best winning streak to six games and is 4-0 at home this season. The right-hander gave up a two-run, opposite-field homer to Pablo Sandoval and had six strikeouts with no walks.

”He threw a lot of strikes. He dominated,” Sandoval said.

Stripling was a reliever in April but now is one of the Dodgers’ most consistent starters with Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill and Walker Buehler on the disabled list.

”I knew I wanted to be a starter and I felt I could do it,” Stripling said.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts’ confidence in Stripling has been rewarded.

”He’s throwing the heck out of it,” Roberts said. ”Executing pitches and trying to dissect hitters, this is who he is.”

After giving up a leadoff double to Joe Panik, Stripling retired his next 12 batters. Sandoval singled leading off the sixth before Stripling retired another six consecutive hitters.

”They played 16 innings in Miami yesterday, so that helps,” said Stripling, who spent his off day watching the Giants win before flying west. ”You’re always going to go out there and attack knowing they’re tired. Maybe they don’t have that much fight.”

Kenley Jansen retired the side in the ninth for his 16th save.

The Giants trailed 3-2 in the seventh after Sandoval’s shot chased Stripling. The Dodgers’ bullpen then retired San Francisco’s final eight batters in sending the Giants to a 17th loss in their last 23 road games.

”We got back in the game on him but we couldn’t do much as far as putting pressure on him,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.

Kemp homered on the first pitch from Derek Holland (4-7) in the fourth. Yasmani Grandal was safe at third on an error by center fielder Austin Jackson and he scored on Yasiel Puig’s double to deep right-center for a 2-0 lead.

Hernandez homered into the left-field pavilion in the first.

The Dodgers’ 88 homers this season are tops in the National League.

Holland gave up three runs – two earned – in five innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

Earlier in the day [url=http://www.jaguarscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-jalen-ramsey-jersey]Jalen Ramsey Jersey Black[/url] , Kemp was suspended for one game and fined an undisclosed amount for his involvement in a scuffle with Texas Rangers catcher Robinson Chirinos on Wednesday. Kemp appealed the punishment, so he’s allowed to play until the process is completed.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Giants: 3B Evan Longoria (broken left hand) went on the disabled list a day after getting hit by a pitch at Miami. … INF Brandon Belt will be activated Saturday after having an appendectomy.

Dodgers: Placed reliever Pedro B锟絜z on 10-day DL with right biceps tendinitis, retroactive to Tuesday.

NO LUCK AGAINST LA

Holland has never fared well against the Dodgers. He’s 0-3 with a 6.38 ERA in four career starts against them. He has struck out 16 and walked 13. ”They were laying off some pretty good pitches,” he said. ”They did a pretty good job of working the count.”

UP NEXT

Madison Bumgarner (0-1, 4.76 ERA) pitches for the Giants on Saturday against Alex Wood (1-5, 4.43) in a matchup of lefties. Bumgarner seeks his first win in his third start after missing the first two months of the season with a broken left pinkie.



Tom Brady wore a black wool stocking cap and a big smile. Bill Belichick sported a full suit.

The guy in the shark costume, well, he was just trying to not wear out his welcome.

The New England Patriots were the first team on stage Monday at Super Bowl opening night, the kickoff to the week of buildup to the big game. They gathered at Xcel Energy Center, the hockey rink and home of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild, for their first on-site media obligation after landing in Minneapolis in the afternoon.

The Philadelphia Eagles, whose charter flight arrived Sunday, had the second half of the NFL’s annual assembly of hundreds of reporters, camera operators and just-for-fun ”journalists” surrounding players and coaches with a ticketed crowd looking on from the seats.

Brady led his team out of the tunnel in the set made to resemble a giant glacier in honor of the host state’s wintry climate. Swarmed by a 12-deep pack of media at his podium in advance of his eighth career Super Bowl, Brady was asked often about his family ties to the area and his desire to keep his children from criticism and scrutiny. He fielded a query about his most attractive teammate, nodding to Danny Amendola, Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski.

And, of course, he fielded a few football questions.

As the Patriots filed out [url=http://www.jaguarscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-jalen-ramsey-jersey]http://www.jaguarscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-jalen-ramsey-jersey[/url] , Belichick met his Eagles counterpart, Doug Pederson, for a handshake and a photo op that produced a jarring juxtaposition of their wardrobe selections. Pederson had on a white polo shirt with jeans and a cap.

Belichick even flashed some smiles during his interview session, including questions from former figure skating star and lifelong Patriots fan Nancy Kerrigan. Working the room as a special correspondent for ”Inside Edition,” Kerrigan later asked Amendola about his favorite Super Bowl party food.

”Nachos,” Amendola quickly responded.

Eagles center Jason Kelce sported an Elmer Fudd-style wool cap with earflaps that the entire team was given as host-community gifts upon landing. He looked ready for an ice fishing expedition.

”If you’re in Minnesota, you might as well do as the Minnesotans do,” Kelce said.

Every player and coach on the team is required to be present, so they don’t get fined, as Marshawn Lynch reminded the football world during his appearance with the Seattle Seahawks three years ago . That includes the injured players not in concussion protocol, so ACL reconstruction patients Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz and left tackle Jason Peters were part of the crowd, too, even though their knees won’t let them play in the big game.

”We’re all in the building every day. Carson, I think he shows up at 5:30 or 6, something like that,” Peters said. ”We’re just all embracing it and trying to help our position out.”

The aforementioned guy in the shark costume, wearing a credential for ”TYT Sports,” was attempting to dive into Patriots center David Andrews’ deepest fears. Andrews readily called himself a ”scaredy cat” and acknowledged a fear of clowns.

”Clowns are out,” he said. ”Birthday parties. Circuses. Clowns are a no go.”

In the thick of the throngs of media on the floor was 39-year-old Patriots linebacker James Harrison [url=http://www.jaguarscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-blake-bortles-jersey]Blake Bortles Jersey Black[/url] , the oldest active defensive player in the league who’s at his third Super Bowl after reaching two with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He wasn’t interested in reflecting on that or much of anything else.

”I’m just blocking this out,” Harrison said, after declaring the questions from reporters the most annoying part of his Super Bowl week. ”Football is always the focus in my head. I’m running through defenses right now. I’m not really listening to what you’re saying.”

Wait, why such malignant thoughts about media night?

”Because it’s unnecessary. It’s useless,” Harrison said. ”You ask me questions that don’t matter, that don’t have any consequence or nothing about the game.”

Patriots guard Shaquille Mason was more of a willing participant in the silly side of the event. Asked what precious metal Harrison reminds him of, Mason replied, ”some kind of iron.”

Up in the seats was Patriots bushy-bearded defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, in blue jeans, a leather jacket and a pencil stuck behind his ear. Leaning back in a seat as if he were a hockey fan watching a game, Patricia complimented a reporter for his focus in asking a repeat query about his impending hire as Detroit’s head coach. Patricia predictably declined to entertain any questions about the Lions.

”I am very concerned right now about making sure our players have the best possible experience,” Patricia said.

He meant the Super Bowl itself. Media night, well, for most of the coaches, players and even some of the media itself, that’s one to get over and get through.

”Can we go home now, coach?” one player playfully yelled to Belichick as he walked by his podium.

To which Belichick replied, ”I don’t know. We haven’t heard the whistle yet.”