Lo Duca's Single Gives Dodgers 2-1 Win

The Dodgers had only three hitters reach base until the eighth, when Paul Lo Duca singled home Jayson Werth from third base with two outs and the score tied 1-1. Dodgers pulled to within 2 games of the Giants for first place in the National League West with the win. Gagné pitched the ninth for his 82nd consecutive save and 19th of the year in front of 51,113 at Dodger Stadium.

Werth homered to tie the game 1-1 in the fifth. The Dodgers, despite getting only four hits, took the lead in the season series, 6-5 in a game that saw no sign of a continuation of the trouble the two clubs engaged in during the series in San Francisco.

"There's no bad blood. I think it's over with. That was last week. These are two competitive teams, and you've got a little rivalry going on. Neither team really needs to get caught up into it. We've just got to go out and continue to play good baseball. We don't need no brawls."--former Dodger Marquis Griffin.

Werth opened the eighth by hustling a single out of a dribbler to third. Alex Cora, pinch-hitting for Jose Hernandez, bunted him to second, pinch-hitter David Ross walked and Cesar Izturis' fielder's-choice moved Werth to third. Then Lo Duca came through with the game-winner.

Werth started in center field for the third time in his Major League career. He also had half of the Dodgers' four hits, scored both runs and drove himself with his fourth home run in only his 16th game.

In the top of the ninth, Gagné gave up a two-out single, and with Barry Bonds waiting in the on-deck circle, got Marquis Grissom to ground out to Izturis to end the game.

Barry Bonds was walked four times, twice intentionally, and the final walk came with Giants runners on first and second with one out. Guillermo Mota (4-3), who earned the win in relief of Jeff Weaver, didn't throw anything near the strike zone, and the Dodgers took the touchy move of loading the bases.

It worked out perfectly, however, when hot-hitting Edgardo Alfonzo followed with a soft liner to second baseman Jose Hernandez, who then tossed to Izturis for the inning-ending double play.

Adrian Beltré's second-inning double and fourth-inning walk were the only Los Angeles runners until Werth hit a one-out home run in the fifth tied it 1-1.

Weaver had his best start in more than a month, working six innings and allowed one run on six hits with three walks and two strikeouts. He pitched his 11th quality start with nothing personally to show for it.

He allowed a run in the first on a ground ball single, a pair of walks and a two-out broken bat single for a 1-0 Giant lead.

The Dodgers (39-35) pulled within 2 1/2 games of the first-place Giants (43-34) but remained in third place in the division behind San Diego.

Valenzuela drafted--Fernando Valenzuela denied a published report that he has "agreed in principle" to pitch for Aguilas in the Mexican Winter League this fall, saying that the club had selected him in the league's annual free-agent draft but that he had engaged in no formal discussions with any club officials. However, Valenzuela did leave open the possibility that he might be interested. Valenzuela, who turns 44 in September, last pitched for Hermosillo in the Mexican Winter League in 2002. He last pitched in the majors in 1997 with St. Louis. Valenzuela compiled a 173-153 mark in 17 big-league seasons.

Dodger Blue Notes--Odalis Perez has a mild case of biceps tendinitis that should not sideline him more than a couple more days, according to Dr. Frank Jobe. He missed his scheduled MRI exam, saying the anti-inflammatory medication he is taking for his shoulder made him sick to his stomach. He will have the MRI today morning as a precautionary measure. ... Milton Bradley (sore shoulder) did not play, even though his return to the lineup was considered possible. Manager Jim Tracy decided to keep Bradley, a switch hitter, out after the Giants switched to a left-hander. ... Tracy also disclosed that reliever Darren Dreifort, who made 113 starts from 1998-2003, is not a candidate to rejoin the rotation because of the effects of off-season hip surgery that limit the setup man to only one inning per appearance.. ... Dave Roberts did not start because of a flare-up of tendinitis in his left patella tendon, which has bothered him since last year and usually heals with a couple days' rest. ... Paul Shuey pitched one inning for Las Vegas in a rehab appearance, allowing three hits, including a homer.

LA Dodgers Insider Top Stories