Maddux Does it All in 7-3 Win Over Reds

Like Old Man River, Greg Maddux inspires awe in those who watching him every day and last night was no exception. The 40-year-old worked seven innings a man 10 years younger would be proud of, allowing seven hits, two runs, walking none, earning his third win without a loss in a Dodger uniform, the 12th of the season and the 330th of his career, giving him sole possession of 10th place all-time.

At the risk of sounding like a Greg Maddux infomercial, he also smacked an RBI single in the second to give the Dodgers a lead they would never relinquish, squeezed in a run and started two double plays. There is no confirmation that he swept out the dugout, washed the towels and polished the rest of the player's shoes before he turned out the lights and left the park after the game.

Using only 77 pitches, he moved out of a tie with Steve Carlton in 10th place on the all-time charts and in his typical, understated style, said "That's kind of cool. I got a chance to watch him (Carlton) pitch a few games when I first broke in and I've always admired and respected him."

Making it a fully-charged battery, Russell Martin had an RBI single in the fourth when J.D. Drew slammed an RBI triple in the fifth, the Dodgers led 3-0. Drew was nailed at the plate, attempting to stretch the hit into an inside-the-park home run.

All this and a little more gave Los Angeles a 7-3 win and a series sweep over Cincinnati and a 21-7 month of August, one of the best since the club moved out of Brooklyn in 1958.

Rich Hammond of the Los Angeles Daily News wrote, "Maddux, whose reputation and results have afforded him baseball-deity status in Los Angeles after just one month, burnished his legend Wednesday and did so in quick fashion."

The streaky Dodgers won their fifth in a row and maintained a three-game lead over San Diego, who beat Arizona, in the NL West after looking up at the rest of the division just 30 days ago, trailing by 7 1/2 games. Six of those wins came over Cincinnati, who was swept by Los Angeles for the first time.

Jason LaRue ended his 0-for-30 slump when lined Maddux's first pitch of the sixth into the left-field seats. Wilson Betemit and Martin both singled in the bottom half of the inning and Maddux received a standing ovation after dropping a perfect squeeze bunt to drive in Betemit.

Scott Hatteberg's RBI single in the seventh cut the lead to 4-2 and first baseman Nomar Garciaparra made a diving stop at first base and tossed to Maddux covering to end further damage.

Then just to prove that they can, indeed, hit home runs, Betemit slammed his 16th, Olmedo Saenz added his 10th as a pinch hitter and Rafael Furcal followed Saenz's belt with his sixth. Furcal's shot came off lefty Aaron Harang, a 13-game winner. The Dodger shortstop came into the game 1-for-18 against lefties.

Brett Tomko replaced Maddux and worked a scoreless eighth before former Dodger Rookie of the Year Todd Hollandsworth knocked in the final Cincinnati run in the ninth off Jonathan Broxton.

The Dodgers improved to 71-62, matching their entire win total from 2005.
  Score by innings
Cincinnati  000 001 101-3
Dodgers     010 111 03x-7

  Dodgers      ab r h bi ave
Furcal, SS      5 1 3 1 .285
Lofton, CF      4 0 0 0 .305
Lugo, 2B        4 1 1 0 .292
Drew, RF        3 0 1 1 .277
Garciaparra, 1B 4 1 1 0 .315
Ethier, LF      3 1 1 0 .335
Betemit, 3B     4 2 2 1 .274
Martin, C       4 0 2 1 .288
Maddux, P       2 0 1 2 .127
 Tomko, P       0 0 0 0 .120
 Saenz, PH      1 1 1 1 .297
 Broxton, P     0 0 0 0 .000
   Totals      34 7 13 7
   Reds        35 3 10 3  

  2B- Furcal (26), Lugo (20). 
3B- Drew (5). HR- Betemit (16), 
Saenz (10), Furcal (9). RBI- 
Maddux 2 (7), Martin (52), 
Drew (77), Betemit (43), Saenz 
(44), Furcal (49). S- Lugo; Maddux. 
LOB- 8, Cincinnati 6. SB- Ethier 
(5). DP- 2 (Maddux, Furcal and 
Garciaparra 2).

  Dodgers      in h r-er bb so era
Maddux (12-11) 7.0 8 2-2 0 3 4.18
Tomko          1.0 0 0-0 0 1 4.70
Broxton        1.0 2 1-1 1 2 2.79
  T- 2-32. Att- 47,356.
Dodger Blue Notes-- Rumors circulating around Dodger Stadium indicate Hong-Chih Kuo may replace Mark Hendrickson in the Dodgers' rotation after Kuo was recalled from Triple-A to replace reliever Tim Hamulack. Kuo, who was 0-4 with a 5.60 ERA early in the season before being sent back to Las Vegas, turned his season around when he began working as a starter and had a 2.61 ERA in nine starts with the Las Vegas 51s. Hamulack, who had pitched 4.1 innings in the previous four days, will probably be recalled when rosters increase to 40 on Sept. 1. …If the Dodgers are going to made a deal for lefty David Wells from Boston it will have to happen before 9 p.m. (PDT) tonight, so Wells would be eligible for the playoff roster. Boston originally asked that Matt Kemp be included in the deal. …The Dodgers have sold enough tickets to their final 13 home games to ensure that they will break their single-season attendance record of 3,608,881, set in 1982. …Los Angeles has an open date today and the Colorado Rockies move in for three games starting Friday.