LOS ANGELES -- Brewers left-hander Doug Davis is understandably relieved to have win No. 1 in the books. He was 0-3 with an 8.87 ERA in five starts before beating the Dodgers on Wednesday night with 5 1/3 effective innings.
"It feels good to be on the board, for sure, and to get the first one out of the way after six starts," Davis said. "Hopefully it starts something."
If only he could get those soft hits to stop falling. Davis surrendered another slew of them on Wednesday, including James Loney's two-out, RBI single in the first inning that dropped only a few feet in front of left fielder Ryan Braun. Had Braun not been playing so deep, it might have been an inning-ending out.
It was the same story six days earlier in San Diego, where Davis was tagged for five earned runs on eight hits, all singles.
"I didn't do anything different [against the Dodgers], honestly," Davis said. "I don't feel like I pitched any better."
The results were certainly better.
"The biggest thing is that I had strike one a lot," Davis said. "They've seen me a lot over the past few years [Davis spent the previous three seasons in the National League West with the D-backs], so I couldn't afford to fall behind. The cutter was good, and the curveball. I had those two pitches working for me, and I was able to use the fastball to set them up."
At some point, those bloop hits could begin turning into outs. Opponents are batting .452 against Davis on balls in play this season; the Major League average is in the neighborhood of .300.