Dodgers Inside Pitch -- September 10

   David Wells put his leadership skills to good use while serving a seven-game suspension last week. Wells, 44, set a good example for the younger players on the Dodgers' pitching staff by showing up at the ballpark early each day and spending one-on-one time with pitching coach Rick Honeycutt.

   Wells, who is the first to admit that he's not perfect and has the reputation to back that up, could have spent his seven unpaid days in non-baseball ventures or by finding some way to be a distraction. Instead, he felt that there was a little bit more rust that needed to be knocked off his aging body. It was rust that developed during his two weeks of free agency after being released by the Padres.

   "I threw a couple of bullpens," he said. "One was absolutely terrible, but I sat down with Rick and worked out the kinks mentally and physically. I went out there and did some light throwing. The other day I threw one (bullpen), and it was great. I felt that I was back on top of my pitches and throwing every one for strikes. You get frustrated when you don't feel every pitch the way you know it feels."

   The extra work paid off. Wells took the mound on Saturday at AT&T Park and pitched 5 1/3 perfect innings. He didn't pitch a perfect game. He didn't throw a no-hitter. He didn't even finish the game. But he made a resounding statement about the value of hard work and what it can accomplish.

   With the majority of the baby-faced September call-ups stationed in the Dodgers bullpen, it's a pretty safe bet that some were listening and taking notes.

   "It was a good thing to throw a couple of bullpens in between, and that way I put myself in a situation to go out there and feel comfortable," Wells said. "I went out there, threw early and tuned myself up for (Saturday)."

Notes and Quotes
   NOTES, QUOTES --LHP David Wells pitched 5 1/3 perfect innings Saturday on the way to his second victory since joining the Dodgers. The victory was the 237th of his career, surpassing Whitey Ford on the all-time victories list.
   --2B Jeff Kent recorded his 19th career multi-home run game. Included in that was his 60th home run since joining the Dodgers. Kent moved into third place on the franchise's all-time home run list for second basemen. He trails Davey Lopes and Jackie Robinson.
   --OF Juan Pierre went hitless, ending a 10-game hitting streak.    --SS Rafael Furcal, in a 0-for-17 slump, was given the day off Friday. Sunday's day off, coupled with Monday's off day, will give Furcal two days of rest. "He had the day off to see if he could regroup a little bit," Dodgers manger Grady Little said. "It's been a long time. He's been in there every single day. I think we'll see a fresh man come back on Tuesday."
   --LHP Joe Beimel was the only relief pitcher to do what he was supposed to do on Sunday against the Giants, and yet he took the loss. Beimel was told to throw two pitches out of the strike zone to Giants slugger Barry Bonds and to intentionally walk him if he failed to swing at either of them. Bonds was intentionally walked and scored the winning run on Ray Durham's pinch-hit home run. "I kind of jumped on the grenade," Beimel said.

By the Numbers-- 2 -- The number of pinch-hit home runs hit by OF Andre Ethier this season. Both were hit against the Cubs.

Quote to Note-- "I wish I had 24 more (players) just like him." -- Dodgers manager Grady Little, on catcher Russell Martin.

*MA*S*H* Report
   3B Nomar Garciaparra (strained left calf) went on the 15-day disabled list Aug. 14. He took infield practice Aug. 22. An MRI confirmed the injury Sept. 1, and he was activated Sept. 4. He was in the starting lineup on Sept. 7.
   C Russell Martin (mildly strained left knee) was injured Sept. 4, and he did not play Sept. 5. He returned to the lineup Sept. 6.    LHP Randy Wolf (tender left shoulder) went on the disabled list July 4. He pitched on a rehab assignment July 25 but emerged with more shoulder irritation. He had season-ending surgery Sept. 5.
   OF Jason Repko (torn left hamstring) opened the season on the disabled list. He had surgery March 28 and is expected to be out for the season. He was moved to the 60-day disabled list Aug. 29.
   LHP Hong-Chih Kuo (sore left elbow) went on the disabled list retroactive to July 1. He had arthroscopic surgery to remove a bone chip from his left elbow July 25. He was transferred to the 60-day DL on Sept. 4. It's possible that he may not pitch for the rest of the season.
   RHP Chin-hui Tsao (strained right shoulder) went on the disabled list July 15. He was ready to start a throwing program in early August, but renewed pain put those plans on hold.    RHP Jason Schmidt (sore right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 17. He underwent exploratory surgery on June 20, and a torn labrum was discovered. He was transferred to the 60-day disabled list on Aug. 13 and will miss the rest of the season.
   RHP Yhency Brazoban (strained right shoulder) went on the disabled list June 1. He cut short a throwing session June 15, and he was subsequently diagnosed with a torn labrum. He underwent surgery June 22 and is out for the season.