LOS ANGELES -- Chris Taylor's second career grand slam highlighted a six-run first inning Monday night as the Dodgers coasted to a 12-1 rout over the Pirates, who were reeling from the testicular cancer diagnosis of scheduled starting pitcher Jameson Taillon earlier in the day.
Taylor and Yasiel Puig homered off Trevor Williams, who started in place of Taillon and lasted only three innings, charged with eight runs (six earned) that also included a two-run double by Yasmani Grandal.
Taylor has only four career home runs and two are grand slams. This one came on an 0-2 pitch.
"It was 0-2, I was just trying to shorten up and put a ball in play, honestly, and he left a slider up over the plate," said Taylor, who tied a career high with three hits.
Since his callup April 19, Taylor is batting .395 with 10 runs, three homers and 12 RBIs in 16 games.
"He has the ability to cover more pitches and handle velocity," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. "For me, the rap on the swing was the launch position and that he couldn't handle velocity. Just mechanically, he's more sound."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Joc starts it:Joc Pederson drove in the Dodgers' first run with his first of two singles that recorded Statcast™ exit velocities of 111.3 mph and 109.3 mph, two of his three hardest-hit batted balls this season. Pederson added a double and finished the game 3-for-5.
PFP needed: Williams dug his first-inning hole by mishandling back-to-back dribblers from Andrew Toles and Corey Seager to open the frame. One went for an infield single, the other was ruled a throwing error. Four batters later, Taylor's grand slam made it 5-0 Dodgers and the rout was soon on.
"I believe the first ball was going to roll foul," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "The second ball is a play that he's worked on, we've seen him make, and unfortunately it comes out of his hand hot and high. So they hit the ball 90 feet and got runners on first and second."
"I showered it off today, I'm going to go back to the hotel and collect my thoughts, but you know, the sun will come out tomorrow and you've just got to re-evaluate and do it again in five days." -- Williams, on rebounding from this outing
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
The Pirates' 17 strikeouts against the Dodgers' pitching tied the club record for a nine-inning game. The last time Pittsburgh batters struck out that many times in regulation was June 18, 2013, at Cincinnati.
WHAT'S NEXT Pirates: The Pirates will send right-hander Ivan Nova to the mound for Tuesday's 4:10 p.m. CT contest at Dodger Stadium. The Pirates are 3-3 in Nova's six starts this season despite him pitching at least six innings in each and posting a 2.14 ERA.
Dodgers: The Dodgers list Julio Urias as their probable starter for Tuesday night's 7:10 p.m. PT game. Urias is still looking for his first win of the year and although he has allowed only one run in 10 2/3 innings, he also has issued an alarming eight walks.