Cora Squeezes the Diamonbacks

The current trend in baseball is the home run, the longer the better, but a couple 'short' balls made a big difference in the 6-2 Dodger win over the Diamondbacks. Alex Cora, magical in the field but underrated by many with a bat in his hand, squeezed in the lead run in the fourth inning, then came back in the sixth and duplicated the play. Kaz Ishii ran his record to 7-1 against Arizona, allowing four hits in six innings and the Dodger bullpen slammed the door on their 50th win of the season.

Ishii wobbled early in the game, allowing a leadoff single before throwing a double play tball o take care of the problem -- one of three DPs the Dodgers rang up during the game.

In the second he walked the leadoff man, hit the second batter and then gave up consecutive singles to put the Diamondbacks up 1-0. On a fly to center field, a second run scored but Milton Bradley nailed the runner advancing from second to third and Ishii scrambled out trailing only by a pair of runs.

The lefthander then righted the ship and retired 13 of the next 14 he faced with a walk marring the string. He finished his 76-pitch evening by recording 46 strikes.

Cora singled in the third and Ishii must have made bunting coach Maury Wills grumble when he fouled the third strike on an attempted sacrifice. Dave Roberts singled Cora to third and he scored the first Dodger run on a ground ball by Cesar Isturis.

In the fourth, Bradley walked, Green -- who had three hits on the evening -- singled him to third and Jayson Werth's long fly knotted the score 2-2. Following a Robin Ventura walk, Cora deftly rolled a bunt in front of the plate as Green scored to break the tie.

Los Angeles added two in the sixth after Bradley doubled. Werth walked and Ventura singled Bradley across. Cora's second perfect bunt scored Werth for a 5-2 margin.

Bradley walked and Green doubled to score him in the eighth for the final run of the game. It was the center fielder's third run of the game.

Guillermo Mota, who was limiting opposing hitters to a .114 average in July, gave up only a single in two innings and Duaner Sanchez closed things out with a double play grounder after allowing a leadoff single.

Paul Lo Duca was the only Dodger position player who did not get a hit or an RBI in the game.

Dodger Blue Notes--Lefty Odalis Perez will be taken off the disabled list and make his first start of the second half tonight against Arizona. He has been out three weeks. The Dodgers have a roster decision to make when he comes back. Giovanni Carrara and Duaner Sanchez are out of options and would be available to other clubs by the waiver route. Chin-Feng Chen does have options available and may be the man sent back to Las Vegas, although it would leave the club short a posion player. ... Adrian Beltre again sat the game out with a upper quad muscle pull. He is considered day-to-day basis and will not be placed on the disabled list. ... Bradley, who has been only able to bat left-handed because of a sore right shoulder, started against the Arizona right-handed starter and is marked as probably to play Saturday night. ... Disabled outfielder Juan Encarnacion has begun swinging off a tee as he recovers from a left shoulder injury. He is eligible to be activated Monday, which would require yet another roster move.