Wolf Goes an Inning too Far

Randy Wolf retired seven straight Brewers in the fourth, fifth and sixth inning, then with one out in the sixth, an infield single preceded a home run by left fielder Kevin Mench, turning a 3-2 Dodger lead into a 4-3 loss. Russell Martin's solo homer had broken a 2-2 tie and put the Dodgers in the lead.

Wolf, who had Tommy John surgery on July 1, 2005, and didn't return to pitch for Philadelphia until late in the 2006 season, was signed to a one-year, $8 million contract by the Dodgers.

If there was a question about his elbow being ready for prime time, the first 5.1 innings should have dispelled all doubt.

He allowed single runs in the second and third innings, then settled in untouched until the jarring shot into the left-field seats that gave the Brewers their second win in the season-opening series.

Juan Pierre walked in the third and Martin and Nomar Garciaparra ripped double into the gap in right field to give L.A. a short-lived 2-1 lead when Wolf gave up a homer in the bottom of the inning.

After Martin's homer over the center field wall broke the tie, the Dodgers threatened to break things open in the sixth.

Luis Gonzalez and Matt Kemp slugged long outs to center to open the inning, then Wilson Betemit arched a single off the end of his bat into short left and Ramon Martinez slapped a single before Wolf drew a walk to load the base.

Brewers reliever Brian Shouse (1-0) got out of the mess when Pierre bounced out to short on the first pitch. The final 10 Dodgers were retired in order, save a walk to Garciaparra.

Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Broxton worked a single scoreless inning each with Broxton striking out all three Brewers he faced.

Kemp replaced Andre Ethier in right field with a lefthander on the mound and after fanning and hitting a routine fly to right, slugged a shot that was caught in front of the wall in the sixth and duplicated the effort in the eighth.

Wolf benefitted from some solid defense, including fielding a near-perfect bunt and throwing the runner out from his kness in the fourth.

Pierre ran down a long drive in deepest center and Jeff Kent almost single-handedly shut the Brewers off in the third. After a homer tied the game, a double and a hit-batsman put Wolf in a jam.

Kent went well behind second to glove a hard grounder and turn it into a force as second, then with runners at first and third, the Brewers tried a double steal, with Kent taking Martin's throw and quickly firing ti back to him in time to nip the runner at the plate and end the inning.

Jason Schmidt will make his first start for the Dodgers tonight (Wednesday) in the final game of the Milwaukee series and will be opposed by Jeff Suppan of the Brewers.
 Score by innings
Dodgers	        002 010 000-3
Milwaukee	011 002 00x-4

 Dodgers	ab  r  h  bi  ave
Pierre cf	4  1  0  0  .000
Martin c	5  2  3  2  .333
Garciaparra 1b	3  0  1  1  .167
Kent 2b	        4  0  1  0  .286
Gonzalez lf	4  0  0  0  .000
Kemp rf	        4  0  0  0  .000
Betemit 3b	4  0  1  0  .143
Martinez ss	2  0  1  0  .250
 Anderson ph	1  0  0  0  .000
 Valdez ss	0  0  0  0  .000
Wolf p	        2  0  0  0  .000
 Billingsley p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Broxton p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Saenz ph	1  0  0  0  .000
    Dodgers	34  3  7  3  
    Brewers	31  4  8  4

 2b hit- Martin (1), Garciaparra 
(1). HR- Martin (1). RBI- Martin 2 (2), 
Garciaparra (1). LOB- Dodgers 
8, Brewers 6.

 Dodgers	in  h  r-er  bb  so  era
Wolf (0-1)	6.0  7  4-4  1  5  6.00
Billingsley	1.0  1  0-0  0  1  0.00
Broxton	        1.0  0  0-0  0  3  0.00
  HBP- Wolf 2.
 T- 2:31. Att- 22,603.	
Dodger Blue Notes-- The optimism the club had when shortstop Rafael Furcal showed remarkable recovery from his sprained ankle has drifted into the realization that he will not be ready to play when he is eligible to come off the disabled list on Saturday. "He's having a hard time getting from jogging to running," trainer Stan Conte said. "It's a transition, and we expected it. If you push at the wrong time, you can irritate it and cost more days. It was a significant ankle injury, and this is not very much time when you're talking about an ankle. He hasn't had any setbacks." …Brad Penny threw a bullpen the first day in Milwaukee and announced he would be able to go in the first game of the San Francisco series Friday.

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