Betemit's Double Makes it Six Straight

The Dodgers wore green jerseys and hats in celebration of St. Patrick's Day but the "Luck of the Irish" didn't apply to minor league standout Tony Abreu Saturday afternoon although the Dodgers made it six wins in a row by beating Houston 7-5.

Abreu jammed his shoulder sliding into second base on a stolen base attempt in the seventh inning and was assisted from the field in a cart. The extent of his injury was not known immediately.

The young second baseman had just boosted his average to .394 with a single when he was thrown out at second while sliding head-first.

The injury dampened the 7-5 win that was keyed by a double inside the bag at third base in the last of the eighth that broke a 4-4 tie.

A sacrifice fly and a Houston error added another pair of runs in the inning, negating the effect of an Astro homer in the ninth.

D.J. Houlton worked two perfect innings in relief to win his team-leading third game of the spring against a single loss. Matt White collected the save despite giving up the home run.

Rafael Furcal and Juan Pierre combined for three runs and a pair of runs batted in.

Manager Grady Little noted after the game, "They will be exciting to watch, if they stay healthy, for 162 games. Runners will be on base day in and day out and we have people who will drive them in."

Brett Tomko started and struggled in the first inning but settled down and allowed only one run over his three innings.

He pitched around a pair of singles and a walk in the first inning, then retired eight of the final batters he faced.

Furcal hit the first pitch he saw for a single and scampered around to score when Pierre laced a triple into the right field corner, then scored on Nomar Garciaparra's single.

A two-out double to left by Furcal and Pierre's single boosted the margin to 3-1 in the second.

Joe Mays took over inn the fourth and was tagged for a home run by Carlos Lee. Then with two out, he served up a walk and a pair of singles to put Houston up 4-3.

The Dodgers tied the game 4-4 in the sixth when Wilson Betemit walked and Olmedo Sanez doubled. Ramon Martinez's ground ball knotted the score.

Kelly Stinett walked to open the eighth, Larry Bigbie singled and Betemit grounded a double past third base break the tie and put runners on second and third.

Choo Freeman's fly scored Bigbie and with two out, Matt Kemp's grounder was thrown wide of first to allow the third and final run of the inning.

D.J. Houlton pitched a scoreless seventh and eighth and White nailed it down for his first save, giving up his first run of the spring in the process.

After boosting their spring record to 13-6, Los Angeles will play a rare Sunday game against the Cleveland Indians at Winter Haven.
 Score by innings
Houston	100 300 001-5
Dodgers	210 001 03x-7

 Dodgers	          ab  r  h  bi  ave
Rafael Furcal ss	   3  2  2  0  .455
 Ramon Martinez ss-2b 	   2  0  0  1  .250
Juan Pierre cf	           3  1  2  2  .467
 Matt Kemp cf	           2  0  0  0  .212
Nomar Garciaparra 1b	   3  0  1  1  .240 
 Delwyn Young	           2  0  0  0  .333
Jeff Kent 2b	           3  0  0  0  .316
 Larry Barnes 1b	   1  0  0  0  .333
Luis Gonzalez lf	   2  0  0  0  .316
 Tony Abreu 2b	           1  0  1  0  .394
 Wilson Valdez ss          0  0  0  0  .368
Mike Lieberthal c	   3  0  1  0  .294
 Kelly Stinett c	   0  1  0  0  .263
James Loney rf	           3  0  0  0  .444
 Larry Bigbie	           1  1  1  0  .344
Wilson Betemit 3b	   3  2  2  1  .250
Brett Tomko p	           1  0  0  0  .000
 Joe Mays p	           0  0  0  0  .000
 Olmedo Sanez ph	   1  0  1  0  .000
 DJ Houlton p	           0  0  0  0  .000
 Choo Freeman ph	   0  0  0  1  .000
 Matt White p	           0  0  0  0  .000
  Totals	          34  7  11  6
  Houston	          34  5   9  5  

 2b hits- Furcal (3), Saenz (4), 
Betemit (2). 3b hits- Pierre. 
RBI- Pierre 2 (6), Garciaparra 
(7), Martinez (3), Betemit (2), 
Freeman (3). CS- Abreu. S- Mays. 
SF- Freeman. LOB-Dodgers 8, 
Houston 6. DP- Kent Furcal and 
Garciaparra; Betemit, Martinez 
and Barnes. 

 Dodgers	in  h  r-er  bb  so  era
Tomko	        3.0  3  1-1  1  2  1.80
Mays	        3.0  5  3-3  2  2  4.50
Houlton (3-1)	2.0  0  0-0  0  2  1.35
White (sv 1)	1.0  1  1-1  1  1  1.23
 T- 2:40. Att- 5,734.
Dodger Blue Notes-- Outfielder Jason Repko, because of a strained right groin, will start the season on the disabled list, Dodgers Manager Grady Little said Friday. "We know that speed is his game so we won't be pushing him and trying to rush the process along." Repko wasn't so sure. "There are two weeks to go and I am feeling better each day"

Miller Cut-- The Dodgers sent lefthander Greg Miller to the Minors Friday, but Little said, "We like the way he pitched," Little said. "He needs to start some games in the minor leagues, and to be ready to do that he needs to get more innings right now than we're able to give him. Miller said the moved, "Was understandable." He also mentioned that Little said he could be pitching in Los Angeles before the season ended.

Dodger Blue Notes-- Pitchers Brad Penny and closer Takashi Saito pitched in a simulated game against minor leaguers on a back field before the rain Friday sent everyone running for cover. Penny, who was fine-tuning a split-finger pitch, went five innings and threw 72 pitches and Saito threw two innings and 32 pitches. Saito worked two uneventful innings, throwing 38 pitches, and now will take two days off before pitching on back-to-back days for the first time beginning Monday. Penny, whose effort had more of a specific purpose, went the equivalent of five innings and threw 72 pitches. …Flags at Dodgertown were at half-staff and will remain there through Sunday in honor of former commissioner Bowie Kuhn, who died Thursday. Kuhn also was remembered with a moment of silence before the game. …The Dodgers sold a record 9,067 tickets yesterday, but with the rainout that official attendance figure will not count in the history books. Fans packed the stadium and more than 2,500 Dodger faithful were scattered on the berm. The official Holman Stadium attendance record still remains 9,028 and occurred on March 10, 1991 against the New York Mets.      

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