Down on the Dodger Farm June 3

Sometimes it seems Hideo Nomo has made more comebacks than George Foreman. The 35-year-old Japanese righthander was at it again Thursday night and when it was over, it was deemed a success. A split fingernail on the index finger of his pitching hand was the cause of a rehab assignment at Las Vegas where Nomo threw 67 pitches over five innings against Edmonton (Expos) He yielded five hits and three runs over that span, walking three and striking out two to become the winner in a 14-3 romp.

More important than the victory was that all concerned seemed more than satisfied with his performance.

Dodger pitching coach Jim Colborn was on hand to monitor his progress and indicated that he'll pronounce Nomo ready to return to active duty. Catcher Koyie Hill said, " It was the same old Nomo. His velocity was good and he was in total command. " Nomo himself allowed that the fingernail gave him no problems.

The 51's certainly weren't shy about backing him, especially Chin Feng Chen who ripped two home runs (his ninth and 10th) for five RBI. Luis Garcia sent his 16th out plus a double and single and Jose Flores clouted his second of the season. Mark Johnson came on to hold the Trappers without a run for the final four innings to gain his first save.

The 51's remained seven back in the PCL South with the victory.

Behind an extra sharp Jonathan Broxton, Vero Beach won its fourth straight, downing Fort Myers (Twins) 5-0 in a game shortened by rain to six innings. In so doing the Dodgers finally climbed over .500 at 29-28. Broxton (4-3) gave up only two hits in his five innings, walking one while striking out seven to raise his total to 75 for the season.

Despite its recent surge, Vero is all but officially out in the Florida State East for it's six games behind with the same number left in the first half.

Columbus missed a chance to gain ground in the SAL South as leading Charleston, S.C. lost. But so did the Catfish as Savannah (Expos) raked Zach Hammes (2-3) for eight hits and six runs to win 7-4. Dom Laurin hit a three-run homer, his fourth, to pull the Fish closer but that was about it. Chin-Lung Hu and Matt Kemp both had two hits as Columbus remained in third place, three games off the pace.

But Jacksonville gained ground in the Southern League East even while its scheduled contest with Greenville was rained out. Division leader Chattanooga lost, meaning the Suns are just one-half game behind.

Injury Update--Outfielder Jayson Werth has finished his rehab with Las Vegas and is rejoining the Dodgers. Werth hit .412 with five home runs and 20 RBI in the 14 games he played for the 51's.

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