Dodgers-Angels Tie in Game Shortened by Rain

In what sounds like an April Fool's Day story, the Dodgers lost an early lead then had to rally to tie the game before a rare rain storm ended the game in the middle of the eighth inning. Eric Gagne suffers earache, and two run homer in first game of Freeway Series.

Maybe it is going to be just one of those seasons for the Dodgers, a team known for putting three men on third, among other oddities. Gagne, suffering from an infected ear, allowed a two run homer, Hong-Chih Kuo gave up his first run of the spring and the Angels scored a run in the top of the eighth to take a 7-6 lead but the rain washed it out and it ended in a 6-6 tie.

Eric Gagne had what was thought to be a punctured ear drum but it turned out to be an infection of his inner and outer left ear and was being treated with antibiotics. Gagne entered in the fifth inning and Garret Anderson homered on his third pitch. Gagne yielded a second run in the inning.

Odalis Perez started and worked for innings, allowing seven hits and three runs and leaving the game tied 3-3. Gagne gave up a two-run homer in his only inning, Kuo allowed another run in his single frame and Franquelis Osoria pitched a shutout before the Baseball gods said, "enough already."

Both Perez and Gagne were off their game. Perez threw 70 pitches by the fourth inning with 47 of them strikes. Gagne used up 21 pitches in his inning. The Dodgers had to come from behind to score two in the seventh to tie the game on a home run by Drew and an RBI single by Bill Mueller.

Former Dodger right-hander Jeff Weaver had an even worse night, allowing four runs, 10 hits and no walks over five innings and he finished the spring with a 7.46 ERA in six starts.

Angels outfielder Garret Anderson gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead in the first when he misplayed Jason Repko's double and the speedy centefielder scored on the play. But Anderson later homered off Gagne. Edgardo Alfonzo had an RBI single in the top of the eighth and the umpires waited 24 minutes before calling the game.

J.D. Drew went 3-for-3 with a solo home run. Bill Mueller went 3-for-3 with a double and two RBI. Jason Repko was 2-for-3 with two RBI.

Tim Salmon had homered on the first pitch off Kuo in the sixth to put the Angels up 6-4 but the Dodgers tied the score in the seventh inning on a home run by J.D. Drew and RBI-single by Bill Mueller.

The Freeway Series moves to Angel Stadium, where Dodgers right-hander Chad Billingsley faces Angels tonight.

Series Records-- Seventy-nine players have suited up for both the Dodgers and Angels, including Hall of Famers Eddie Murray, Frank Robinson, Don Sutton and Hoyt Wilhelm. Five current Angels personnel once played for the Dodgers: right-hander Jeff Weaver (2004-05), manager Mike Scioscia (1980-92), hitting coach Mickey Hatcher (1979-80, 1987-1990), first-base coach Alfredo Griffin (1988-1991), and bench coach Ron Roenicke (1981-83).
  Dodgers       ab r h bi ave
Repko, CF        4 1 2 1 .306
Navarro, C       3 0 0 0 .048
  Martin, R, C   1 0 0 0 .316
Drew, RF         4 1 3 1 .357
Kent, 2B         3 0 1 0 .200
  Robles, PR-2B  1 1 0 0 .196
Garciaparra, 1B  4 1 2 0 .254
Mueller, 3B      4 1 3 2 .340
  Truby, PR      0 0 0 0 .200
Ledee, LF        3 0 1 0 .292
  Duncan, LF     1 0 0 0 .143
Martinez, SS     4 1 1 1 .302
Perez, O, P      0 0 0 0 .000
  Saenz, PH      1 0 1 0 .346
  Gagne, P       0 0 0 0 .000
  Kuo, P         0 0 0 0 .000
  Alomar, PH     1 0 0 0 .345
  Osoria, P      0 0 0 0 .000
  Dodgers       34 6 14 5
  Angels        30 6 11 6 

  Score by innings:
Angels    102 021 0-6
Dodgers   120 001 2-6

  Errors- Angels 1, Kent. 2B: 
Repko (5), Mueller (2), Kent (1), 
Garciaparra (3). HR: Drew (4). 
RBI: Martinez (11), Repko (12), 
Mueller 2 (12), Drew (11). LOB: 
Angels 6, Dodgers 8. DP: 
Dodgers 2 (Mueller-Kent-
Garciaparra, Kent-Martinez-
Garciaparra). SB- Angels 1. 
CS- Angeles 1.

  Dodgers  in h r-er bb so era
Perez     4.0 7 3-3  1  3 3.86
Gagne     1.0 2 2-2  1  0 4.50
Kuo       1.0 1 1-1  0  0 0.75
Osoria    1.0 1 0-0  0  1 2.08
Dodger Blue Notes-- The Dodgers' walking wounded will be ready for the season opener Monday against the Braves. Shortstop Rafael Furcal available for Monday's season opener against Atlanta. Rafael Furcal, slowed by a strained lower back, center fielder Kenny Lofton, who has a calf muscle cramp) and Jose Cruz Jr. who suffered a slight concussion are expected to be in the lineup. …Manager Grady Little said Friday he'd accept a 7-7 record over the first 14 games. "I managed a team once that was 40-17 out of the gate," he said of the 2001 Boston Red Sox. "We leveled off, played around .500 the rest of the way, won 93 games, and didn't make the playoffs."…The Los Angeles Times is celebrating their 125th anniversary and the Dodgers will leave one seat vacant in the second row of the press box this season to honor the late Jim Murray, who won a Pulitzer Prize during his 37 years at the paper and died in 1998 at age 78. Murray's typewriter and glasses are enclosed in a lucite case at that seat with a nameplate bearing his name. ...Aaron Sele is still mulling over an assignment to Las Vegas, and will make a decision at the end of the weekend. Sele had a solid spring, posting a 4.12 ERA in 19 innings with 13 strikeouts.