Dodgers explode with four home runs

The Dodgers broke a four-game losing streak by pasting the Cardinals 12-2 behind a 13-hit attack that included four home runs. Jeff Weaver had a break-out start, allowing only two runs in six innings and banging a three-run homer to climax a seven run first. The Dodgers had scored only eight runs in the four losses

Fifteen players either got a hit, scored or knocked in a run as Juan Encarnacion's homer in the the first inning was followed by four-baggers by Weaver, Omedo Saenz and Jason Romano.

But even as the offensive outbreak delighted the crowd at Holman Stadium, Weaver's performance on the mound warmed the heart's of the Dodger staff.

He came into the game with a 8.47 earned run averge over five starts, and although he was working against St. Louis starters at every position, he allowed nine hits, including a two-run homer. However, most were not sharp drives and he walked only one in winning his second game of the spring.

Wilson Alvarez earned a save, working the final three innings and giving up two hits and no runs.

Another bright spot was the two scorching doubles off the bat of Kevin Venture and he scored one run and drove in another.

Cesar Izturis started the first inning rally with a double inside the first base bag and he was promptly sent home by Jolbert'Cabrera's single. Shawn Green lined a triple to the fence in right field for the second run of the inning and Juan Encarnacion homered to make it 4-0.

Weaver's homer followed eight foul balls and scored Ventura and Alex Cora before him.

Paul Lo Duca doubled Romano home in the fifth and scored on Ventura's second double of the game and the dodgers scored three in the seventh as Saenz and Romano hit homers on consecutive pitches and James Loney scored on Wilkin Ruan's fly to center.

The Dodgers improved to 11-16 with seven games left in the spring season, four in Florida.

Note This will be the final report from Florida. The LADugout van will be heading home and will resume coverage of the Dodgers in about four days.