Albuquerque Claims Only Opening Day Win

Albuquerque bumped Omaha 10-5 to earn the only opening day victory as Chattanooga lost to Tennessee, Rancho Cucamonga was dropped by Inland Empire and in a battle of the lakes, Lake County tripped Great Lakes. The Dodgers No. 1 pick, $5 million dollar man Zach Lee. will make his first pro start tonight for the Loons.

Albuquerque Calms the Storm
The Isotopes ran their opening day record to 8-1 as they thumped the Omaha Storm 10-5 behind strong pitching from Dana Eveland (1-0), Travis Schlichting and Scott Elbert. Shortstop Dee Gordon and outfielder Jay Gibbons knocked in three runs each and outfielder Jerry Sands and catcher Damasa Espino had a pair of hits each. Righthander right-hander Carlos Monasterios will start against Omaha veteran Jeff Suppan tonight.

Tennessee Smacks Albuquerque
Starter Chris Withrow (0-1) was hammered for eight hits and four runs in four innings and reliever Justin Miller allowed seven runs in the eighth and ninth as Chattanooga lost 12-4 to Tennessee. Third baseman Pedro Baez doubled ion a pair of runs for the Isotopes.

Quakes Drop 6-2 Opener
Inland Empire walked and even dozen but held on for an Opening Night win over the Dodgers newest franchise, Rancho Cucamonga. The Quakes left 15 men on base. Outfielder Nick Buss and second baseman Rafael Ynoa the pulled off a double-steal in the fourth and Gorman Erickson's infield two-out single in the fifth tied the game at 2-2 but the Angels battled back off starter Alan Webster (0-1) to win. DH Tony Delmonico had two of the five Rancho hits. The Quakes (0-1) will send lefty Greg Wilborn to the mound on tonight against righthander Ariel Pena of the 66ers (1-0).

Loons Dumped in Opener
The Midwest League defending champions, the Lake County Captains, spoiled the Great Lakes Loons opener, handing them a 13-3 loss before an Opening Day crowd of 3,823. Starter Red Patterson (0-1) allowed seven Lake County runs and took the loss. Great Lakes scored a pair of runs in the third courtesy of a hit from second baseman Casio Grider, three errors by Lake County, and a wild pitch. Game two of their season-opening series will highlight the Dodgers No. 1 pick from the 2010 draft RHP Zach Lee in his first professional start, while LHP Mike Ray will start for Lake County.

Dodger Pitchers Can't Keep Ball in the Park
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The Dodgers allowed fewer than a home run per game last year, 134 in 162 games to be exact. That was tied for the third-fewest in the National League, only eight more than the league's best. Through six games this year, they've given up 10 home runs. Those 10 long balls have accounted for 15-of-29 runs (52 percent) they've given up.

The first week of the season is ripe for statistical abnormalities, but it's a trend that must give the Dodgers concern.

Chad Billingsley allowed a three-run home run to Todd Helton, and Troy Tulowitzki hit a two-run shot off Blake Hawksworth, in Wednesday's 7-5 loss to the Rockies at Coors Field.

By comparison, the Dodgers have hit only three home runs this season. Two were solo shots in Wednesday's loss, by James Loney and Rod Barajas. Five of the 18 Dodgers' runs (27.8 percent) have scored on home runs.

Casey Blake didn't hit a home run, but his return to the lineup was a success. He was hit in the shoulder by a 3-and-0 pitch in his first at-bat, hit an RBI triple and later scored in the third, and singled in the fifth. The return of Blake, who batted second, allows Juan Uribe to play second base. That gives the Dodgers more thump in their lineup.

Now they just need their own pitchers to stop getting thumped by longballs.

Billingsley struggled again at Coors Field, allowing five runs on nine baserunners in three innings and needing a whopping 86 pitches. He's allowed 22 runs in 27 1/3 career innings in Denver for a 7.24 ERA.

The Dodgers nearly tied the game in the ninth after Barajas and pinch hitter Jamey Carroll singled inside the third-base bag. Rockies left fielder Carlos Gonzalez cut off both balls nicely, keeping each hitter to a single, then Gonzalez made a long running catch on the warning track to rob Rafael Furcal of a potential two-run, game-tying double.

NOTES, QUOTES
--1B James Loney, off to a 3-for-18 start, connected for his first home run Wednesday, but he's only 4-for-22. The home run was his seventh home run at Coors Field, tied for the most of any road ballpark. He has 45 RBI in 29 games at Coors, helped by a two-home run, nine-RBI game in 2006.

--RHP Kenley Jansen gave up four runs in his first outing of the season, two more than he allowed all last year. He bounced back with two scoreless innings in the fifth and sixth innings.

--OF Xavier Paul got the start in left field, so manager Don Mattingly has given two starts each so far to Paul, Tony Gwynn and Marcus Thames in left field. Going into the season, it was thought that Thames and Jay Gibbons would platoon in left field. Gibbons will begin his season Thursday at Triple-A Albuquerque, as he gets some at-bats with a new contact lens.

--RHP Jon Link and 1B John Lindsey cleared waivers and will begin the season at Triple-A Albuquerque. Link is part of an Isotopes starting rotation that also includes RHP Tim Redding, RHP John Ely, LHP Dana Eveland and RHP Carlos Monasterios.

--RHP John Ely has the edge over Redding to start Sunday, when the Dodgers need a fifth starter for the first time, because he's on the 40-man roster and Redding isn't. The Dodgers have 11 pitchers on the roster. They're expected to expand to 12 pitchers, and it's likely one of the three catchers will be sent to the minors.

BY THE NUMBERS: 102 -- Number of players in baseball who had as many, or more, home runs than the entire Dodger team going into Wednesday's game. They hit two home runs Wednesday, by James Loney and Rod Barajas, so that ridiculous number will get back to something more realistic.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "We know he's going to handle the bat. Defensively, he just needs to keep working and keep putting polish on his game at second base. I look at Ivan as a kid that can play every day, and the way we're set up, he's not going to get the at-bats that's really fair to him or to his development or what we're trying to do. To sit here and get two at-bats a week is not going to do him any good, and it's not going to do us any good. He's young, he can play. To me, he's an everyday guy." -- Manager Don Mattingly, on sending Ivan De Jesus Jr. to the minors to make room for Casey Blake coming off the disabled list.

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