Izturis RBI Gives Dodgers a 6-5 Win Over Cards

The Dodgers battled back from 4-1 and 5-2 deficits to earn a big 6-5 win over the Cardinals before a sellout crowd of 53,494 at Dodger Stadium. Cesar Izturis knocked in the winning run with a two-run single in the eighth. Eric Gagné retired the side in order in the ninth, nailing down his 40th save in 42 chances and ending the 3-hour 20-minute game. Gagné became only the fifth reliever in Major League history to reach the milestone in three consecutive seasons.

The Dodgers extended their winning streak to five games on this 10-game homestand and reached a season-high 25 games above .500 while maintaining a six-game lead over San Francisco in the National League West.

Finley's homer in the fourth, his fourth in three games, gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead against. Jeff Weaver pitched well through 5 2/3 innings, giving up only a single to start the game and a one-out double in the fourth. But the Cardinals got to him for four runs with two outs in the sixth to take a 4-1 lead.

The Dodgers narrowed the deficit to 4-2 when Williams hit Milton Bradley, then Alex Cora with the bases loaded with two outs, forcing home a run. Cora was hit by a pitch for the 16th time this season, tying a club record set by Lou Johnson and Mike Kinkade.

Finley's single in the seventh pulled the Dodgers within a run, 4-3, and they tied the score three batters later on Milton Bradley's infield single.

The Cardinals regained the lead, 5-4, in the top of the eighth inning on Larry Walker's RBI single off Mike Venafro. Walker failing to touch the bag at second later in the inning and was called out, costing the Cardinals a run.

David Ross bunted for a hit while leading off the Dodgers' half of the eighth. Jose Hernandez grounded a double play ball to second but the Cardinals messed it up and the Dodgers had runners on first and second.

Ross and Hernandez moved up on passed ball before Izturis worked a 3-and-1 count and singled up the middle against a drawn-in infield to regain the lead, this time for good.

Dodger Blue Notes--A day after Ishii went only 2 1/3 innings in a 7-6 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals, Manager Jim Tracy said Alvarez would take Ishii's turn and start Wednesday against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Ishii had responded with strong performances in a five-start stretch after almost having been removed from the rotation in early August, but Friday failed to pitch at least five innings for the ninth time in 28 starts. ... Brad Penny threw 56 pitches in a bullpen session Penny has been throwing without pain, Tracy said, but there's no timetable for his return from a strained right biceps. He's been on the disabled list since Aug. 9. …. Right fielder Milton Bradley was dropped to sixth in the batting order for Saturday's game against the Cardinals. Tracy hopes the move will snap Bradley from a 4-for-16 slide during the first four games of the homestand. ... The Dodgers marked the third anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania by holding a "Heroes Night," honoring 2,000 members of local law enforcement and fire departments and representatives of the various branches of the armed forces plus their families. Dodgers fans gave the heroes a standing ovation as they walked onto the field to be saluted before the game. The club also pained red, white and blue ribbons on the field along the first- and third-base lines. The words, "Sept. 11, 2001. We shall never forget," ringed the ribbons.