Still, Buehler and the Los Angeles Dodgers rallied for a 5-3 victory on Wednesday to complete a four-game sweep.
“Not a great outing,” Buehler said after allowing two runs and six hits in five innings. “It's my eighth start, I probably should be in game shape by now, but I've struggled. It's tough to not go and perform the way you think you ought to.”
Justin Turner picked up the Dodgers with a three-run homer in the fourth inning, helping them win their fifth straight overall. Los Angeles finished off a 5-3 homestand that included eight games in seven days and four within 42 hours.
“It's tough, but no one complained,” manager Dave Roberts said.
Like Buehler, Turner is still finding his way. He's batting just .203, but is hitting .361 with runners in scoring position and leads the team with 28 RBI.
David Price came off the COVID-19 list and made a key contribution in relief as Los Angeles sent Arizona to its fifth loss in a row.
Turner sent a 3-2 pitch from Zach Davies (2-2) into the lower left-field pavilion in his 1,300th major league game, putting the Dodgers back in front 4-2 in the fourth inning. Turner was a non-roster invitee to spring training in 2014 and three years later was MVP of the NL Championship Series.
“It's kind of in and out,” Turner said of his hitting. “I feel pretty consistent since the last road trip.”
Gavin Lux added a two-out RBI single in the fourth that made it 5-2.
Buehler (5-1) got into immediate trouble in the fifth when Arizona loaded the bases on consecutive singles by Alek Thomas, Jake Hager and Daulton Varsho. But Buehler got swinging strikeouts of Jordan Luplow and Pavin Smith before Christian Smith hit a grounder to Turner, who stepped on third base to end the threat.
“Kind of the first time all year I tried to reach back to grab something and it's been there,” Buehler said. “I haven't done as much this year to get out of things.”
Roberts added, “He just didn't have his full arsenal. Fortunately, when he needed it, the fastball was huge.”
Arizona had the potential tying runs on base in the seventh after closing to 5-3 on Smith's RBI single. Price came in and struck out Josh Rojas on three pitches to end the inning. He pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the eighth that included two strikeouts.
Price said he spent 10 days in a hotel room in Los Angeles and drove around in his car just to get outside.
“COVID still affects me a little bit,” he said, mentioning his throat and low energy level. “The more I throw the better I feel.”
Arizona's Christian Walker was hitless in four at-bats, ending his streak of homering in four straight games at Dodger Stadium. He failed to hit a ball out of the infield.
Freeman notched his 19th RBI of the season in the Dodgers first, singling in Betts, who hit a leadoff double.
Davies gave up five runs and seven hits — both season highs — in four innings. The right-hander struck out two and didn’t walk anyone.
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (pelvis) didn't throw a bullpen Wednesday as scheduled and won't travel with the team to Philadelphia and Washington. Instead, he'll stay in LA to receive treatment and rest. ... Also missing the trip are the team's broadcasters after a few of them tested positive for COVID-19. They'll call the games from LA.
Arizona acquired LHP Paul Fry from Baltimore for RHP Luis Osorio and optioned Fry to Triple-A Reno.
D-backs: RHP Zac Gallen (2-0, 1.05 ERA) starts Friday at the Chicago Cubs. His ERA is the second-lowest by a starter in his first six starts of a season in franchise history, trailing only Randy Johnson's 0.91 in 2000.
Dodgers: LHP Julio Urías (2-3, 3.00) starts Friday at Philadelphia in the opener of a 10-game trip.
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