Billingsley struggles early for Dodgers

Billingsley struggles early for Dodgers

LOS ANGELES -- Chad Billingsley took the mound in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series hoping to atone for his rough Game 2 start, but things did not go as planned for the young right-hander.

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Billingsley lasted just 2 2/3 innings on Wednesday night, yielding three runs on four hits while walking four. He also struck out four but threw 66 pitches in his short outing.

Chan Ho Park ensured the damage was not worse by retiring Pedro Feliz after relieving Billingsley with the bases loaded in the third. The starter gave up RBI singles to Ryan Howard and Pat Burrell earlier in the third after Jimmy Rollins took him deep leading off the game.

Billingsley -- arguably the Dodgers' best pitcher during the regular season when he led the club in wins (16), ERA (3.14) and strikeouts (201) -- also came up empty in Game 2 when he allowed eight runs (seven earned) on eight hits in 2 1/3 innings to take the loss.

Michael Schwartz is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.