Five L.A. Homers Buries Birds 9-3

VERO BEACH, Florida-- The Dodgers remained unbeaten at Holman Stadium, shooting down the Baltimore Orioles 9-3 with a dozen hits that included home runs by Sandy Alomar, Bill Mueller, Cody Ross and Joel Guzman, a triple by Matt Kemp and a James Loney double. Seven pitchers limited the birds to eight hits, six of which came in the first three innings. Eric Gagne aired his arm out for the first time this spring with a scoreless inning and DJ Houlton won his first game.

Chad Billingsley didn't have his game together, allowing a hit in the first, two in the second and three in the third that resulted in three runs and manager Grady Little gave him the rest of the afternoon off.

Billingsley allowed a bloop double to left and a walk to the first two hitters. With one out, at attempted steal saw catcher Sandy Alomar throw the ball into left field and both runners scored.

But the plate umpire ruled the hitter interfered with Alomar's throw, ruling the hitter out and sent the runners back.

The young pitcher worked out of the second after a pair of hits but was tagged with a homer leading off the third, a single and a walk before a long triple made it 3-0 and finishing Billingsley's afternoon.

Joe Beimel rode to his rescue, collecting the final two outs of the inning to keep the damage manageable.

Two out singles by shortstop Oscar Robles, center fielder Kenny Lofton and first baseman Nomar Garciaparra, hitting second in the order, cut the lead to 3-1 in the third.

Left fielder Matt Kemp slammed a line drive to left center with one out in the third and didn't settle for a double, streaking into third base in front of the throw. Mueller's ground ball to second drove him in and catcher Sandy Alomar tied the game with a home run to left field.

Gagne used only four pitches to retire the side in the fourth inning and Danys Baez worked a scoreless fifth, DJ Houlton earned the win when the Dodgers drove across five runs in the last of the sixth inning.

Jeff Kent, making his first start at second base, singled but was forced by Kemp. Mueller lined a drive over the center field fence to give Los Angeles a 5-2 lead but it got even better.

Following walks to Dioner Navarro and Willie Aybar, Cody Ross continued his hot hitting with a lofty home run to left field and suddenly the Dodgers lead 8-3.

Joel Guzman drove a ball deep over the center field fence in the seventh to end the scoring.

Houlton added a second scoreless inning. Kelly Wunsch threw a blank in the eighth and Lance Carter wrapped it up with another shutout inning.

The Dodgers boosted their record to 4-2-2 and to 2-0-1 at home plus technically giving them a five game undefeated streak, counting the two ties. They host the Boston Red Sox today (Thursday).
Dodgers         ab  r  h  bi
Lofton cf        3  0  1  0
  Ross cf        2  1  1  3
Garciaparra 1b   3  0  1  1
  Loney 1b       2  0  1  0
Drew rf          3  0  0  0
  Repko rf       1  0  0  0
Kent 2b          3  0  2  0
  Young 2b       1  0  0  0
Kemp lf          3  2  1  0
  Guzman lf      1  1  1  1
Mueller 3b       3  1  1  3
  LaRoche 3b     1  0  0  0
Alomar c         2  1  1  1
  Navarro c      1  1  0  0
Aybar 2b         1  1  0  0
  Dewitt 2b      1  0  0  0
Robles ss        3  1  1  0
  Hu ss          1  0  1  0
  Totals        35  9 12  9
  Baltimore     32  3  8  3

  Errors- none. 2b hits- Loney. 3b hits- 
Kemp. HR- Alomar, Mueller, Ross, Guzman. 
DP- Baltimore 1, Los Angeles 2. LOB- 
Baltimore 5, Los Angeles 5. 

  Dodgers        in h r-er bb so
Billingsley     2.1 6 3-3  1  0
Biemel          0.2 0 0-0  0  1
Gagne           1.0 0 0-0  0  0
Baez            1.0 0 0-0  0  1
Houlton(w, 1-1) 2.0 1 0-0  2  1
Wunsch          1.0 0 0-0  1  2
Dodger Blue Notes-- The Dodgers shifted Cs Ed Bellorin and Eric Langill, RHP Eric Stults and OF Jon Weber to minor league camp. …,Former Dodgers Ken Landreaux and Charlie Hough will be guest instructors at Dodgertown later in the season. Landreaux played in Los Angeles 1981-87 and Hough pitched from 1970-80. …New manager, new subject, same old spin. Shortstop Rafael Furcal is taking longer than suspected to recover from arthroscopic knee surgery and second baseman Jeff Kent is still getting over his wrist surgery. But, as always, the response is right off the script -- "they are professionals and when the bell rings they will be ready." A variation of this was replayed daily last season with each of the DL'ed Dodgers. … Right fielder Andre Ethier injured his shoulder diving for a ball in Tuesday's game against the Cardinals at Jupiter and was removed from the game. However, he felt better after a time and the injury will be reevaluated by the Dodger training staff …Former shortstop Joel Guzman handled two flies in left field and seemed comfortable in his new position. …Owners Frank and Jamie McCourt made their first appearance in Dodgertown and are scheduled to stay about a week. …Happy Birthday to Carl Furillo (1922-89), Dick Allen (64) and Juan Encarnacion (30).

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