First Place Left on Base

Manager Grady Little must have wanted to let Hall of Famer Duke Snider pinch-hit Saturday night as the Dodgers left 15 runners on base and lost 4-3 to Tampa Bay. Snider, now 80, could have done little worse as they left the bases in the fourth, fifth and seventh, with nothing to show for it. In the ninth, Matt Kemp, the tying run, was left at third base as Luis Gonzalez struck out.

The Dodgers wore vintage 1950's Brooklyn uniforms, while Tampa Bay played in the uniform of the 1950's St. Petersburg Saints from the Florida State League. Former Dodgers Duke Snider, Johnny Podres and Carl Erskine joined Devil Rays senior adviser Don Zimmer in throwing ceremonial first pitches.

The Dodgers slid into third place behind both San Diego and Arizona who are virtually tied for the National League West lead.

Wearing throw-back Brooklyn uniforms, the Dodgers rallied from a 3-0 deficit to tie the game in the six, then lose on a rare, Dionner Navarro home run in the seventh.

Starter Randy Wolf had his usual first-inning woes, allowing a pair of runs that put the club in a hole they couldn't overcome, and his teammates didn't help when they left nine of their 15 runners in scoring position.

Devil Rays starter Scott Kazmir gave the Dodgers every chance to win, walking or hitting a batter in each of his six innings. Relievers Jay Witasick and Casey Fossum combined to put three Dodgers on base with none out in the seventh inning without any of them scoring as the Devil Rays won for the third time in their last 10 games.

Wolf (8-6), who had given up just one homer in his previous nine starts, allowed a pair. Overall he gave up four runs and 10 hits over 6.2 innings.

Akinori Iwamura homered for Tampa Bay in the first inning as they took a 2-0 lead. A sac fly in the fifth gave the Rays a 3-0 lead.

James Loney, playing for an ill Nomar Garciaparra, slammed a triple in the sixth and Andre Ethier drove him across with a double. Rafael Furcal singled to score Ethier and Juan Pierre's perfect squeeze play tied the game 3-3.

Moments later, Navarro, stuck in a 2-for-34 slump, slammed his first home run since last September 4. He had gone 216 at-bats and was for his first home run since last Sept. 4. The catcher was obtained by the Devil Rays from Los Angeles in a four-player deal last June.
 Score by innings
Los Angeles	000 003 000-3
Tampa Bay	200 010 10x-4

 Los Angeles	ab r  h  bi  ave
Furcal ss	5  0  2	 1  .277
Pierre cf	4  0  1	 1  .274
Martin c	4  0  1	 0  .290
Kent 2b	        4  0  1  0  .266
Saenz dh	2  0  1  0  .230
 Anderson dh	1  0  0  0  .240
Loney 1b	4  1  2  0  .417
Kemp rf	        3  1  1  0  .426
Ethier rf	4  1  2  1  .280
Abreu 3b	2  0  0  0  .290
 Gonzalez ph	1  0  0  0  .290
   Totals	34 3 11 3
   Tampa Bay	30 4 10 4

 2B- Ethier (13), Saenz (4). 3B- Loney (1). RBI-
Ethier (30). Furcal (27), Pierre (15). S-Pierre.
LOB- Los Angeles 15, Tampa Bay 7. SB-Martin (13).

 Los Angeles	 in   h  r-er bb so  era
Wolf (8-6)	6.2  10  4-4  2  5  4.32
Tomko	        1.1   0  0-0  0  1  5.67
 HBP- Abreu. T- 3:05. Att- 24,068.
Dodgers Add Catchers-- The Dodgers signed free agent Ben Davis to a minor-league contract and assigned him to Las Vegas, where he will share time behind the plate with Ken Huckaby and compete for the right to become the major-league backup if either Russell Martin or Mike Lieberthal gets hurt.
Davis, whom San Diego made the second overall pick in the 1995 amateur draft, last played in the majors in 2004.

The Dodgers also signed free-agent right-hander Chris Fussell, who last played in the big leagues in 2000, and sent him to Las Vegas to add to the organization's bullpen depth. Both Davis and Fussell were playing in the independent Atlantic League.
The Dodgers were short on catching depth since Kelly Stinnett's "retirement" four weeks ago. After two months at Las Vegas, he announced his retirement but then reversed himself and signed with St. Louis a week later.

More Signings-- Michael Watt, the Dodgers' second-round pick in this month's amateur draft, agreed to terms on what is believed to be a $375,000 signing bonus. Watt is a left-hander from Capistrano Valley High School and is a graduate of the Los Angeles RBI program.
The Dodgers now have signed eight of their first 10 picks, with first-round sandwich pick James Adkins, a lefty from the University of Tennessee, expected to sign soon.

Record for Russ-- Catcher Russell Martin swiped his 13th base, breaking John Roseboro's Los angeles record of 12 in 1962. The franchise record is 17, set by Lew Ritter in 1905.

Dodger Blue Notes-- First baseman Nomar Garciaparra was sent back to the team hotel shortly after he arrived at Tropicana Field for Saturday night's game because his flu had worsened. James Loney started at first base for the second consecutive game and had a pair of hits, including a triple. Garciaparra has been out of the starting lineup six times this month, five times since Loney was recalled from Las Vegas on June 10. Loney boosted his average to .417 (10-for-24) since that callup.

LA Dodgers Insider Top Stories