Dodgers Inside Pitch - July 8, 2008

A review of Russell Martin's selection to the All-Star team and Hiroki Kuroda's brilliant one-hitter against the Braves as well as a closer look at the Dodgers players and their statistics over the recent days and weeks.

Dodgers catcher Russell Martin, in just his third major-league season, was named to his second consecutive National League All-Star team as a backup. He will be the club's lone representative to this year's game.

"He was very proud," said Dodgers manager Joe Torre, who delivered the news. "His eyes lit up. Every club has to be represented, and I thought just from the looks of what we have had going on the first half, with (shortstop Rafael) Furcal getting hurt and staying hurt, that (Martin) would be the (logical candidate)."

Martin, who grew up in Canada and has played his entire, brief career with the Dodgers, has never been to Yankee Stadium.

"This is my last opportunity," Martin said. "I'm fortunate enough to have a chance to play there. It's going to be awesome."

Martin was joined on last year's NL team by Dodgers pitchers Brad Penny and Takashi Saito. This time, he is the club's lone representative, a fact he says will do little to detract from the experience.

"It won't take away from it," he said. "It's unfortunate. It would have been fun to have a couple of buddies there to hang out with. But nobody on the team is really having an outstanding season. A lot of guys are having good seasons, but not outstanding or great seasons by any means."

Martin presumably was including himself in that statement, but the numbers tell a different story. He is hitting .305 with nine homers and 42 RBIs, roughly comparable to his first-half stats from last year (.306, 11, 60).

Right-hander Hiroki Kuroda came tantalizingly close to becoming the 16th pitcher in modern history to throw a perfect game Monday. That bid was ruined when Atlanta's Mark Teixeira doubled to lead off the eighth, but in the end, Kuroda was perfectly happy with a one-hit shutout in which he retired 27 of 28 batters.

For that matter, so were the Dodgers, who despite still being a game under .500 pulled into a dead heat with Arizona for first place in the National League West.

"Obviously, baseball is a team effort," Kuroda said, with Kenji Nimura translating. "I wasn't the only one out there. As always, (catcher) Russell (Martin) set a good lead, and I just followed where he put his glove. I had great defensive support as well."

Kuroda pitched the 36th complete-game one-hitter since the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles. It was the first since teammate Derek Lowe did it on Aug. 31, 2005 against the Chicago Cubs.

Kuroda has allowed a total of six hits over 16 shutout innings since coming off the 15-day disabled list Wednesday. He had been out two weeks because of an inflamed right shoulder.

"I think my shoulder is fine," he said.

Notes & Quotes
--3B Blake DeWitt went 3-for-3 with three singles and a run scored. It was DeWitt's first multiple-hit game since June 5, when he went 2-for-4 against the Chicago Cubs. It was DeWitt's fourth three-hit game this season, and he is hitting .184 (7-for-38) over his last 14 games, starting June 20.

--INF Nomar Garciaparra homered for the second time this season and the first since April 21, 2008 at Cincinnati. Because he missed so much time with injuries, his homer drought was only six games despite being spread over two months. He has hit safely in all four games since coming off the disabled list the last time, going 4-for-10 with two doubles, a home run, four RBI and three walks.

--OF Matt Kemp batted in the leadoff spot for the seventh consecutive game, and he has hit safely in all seven. He went 1 for 4 with an RBI single to extend his hitting streak, during which he is batting .276 (8-for-29) with two doubles, a triple and six walks. Kemp also struck out in the eighth inning, snapping a string of nine consecutive plate appearances without striking out, and he now has struck out 92 times in 341 plate appearances, an average of once every 3.7 times he steps into the box.

--OF Andre Ethier went hitless in three at-bats with a walk, snapping his hitting streak at seven games. Ethier batted .406 (13-for-32) during the streak. He also had scored a run in seven consecutive games, snapping that streak as well.

--2B Jeff Kent went 0-for-3, snapping a seven-game hitting streak. Kent had hit .417 (10-for-24) during his streak with four doubles, a home run, four RBI and four walks. He failed to reach base for just the second time in his last 19 games.

By The Numb3rs: 12 -- Runs scored by the Dodgers in the first innings of their past nine road games, seven of which have been victories. The Dodgers have scored in the first inning of all but one of those nine games, outscoring their hosts 12-5 in the process. The only game in which they didn't score in the first inning was on Friday night at San Francisco, a game in which they otherwise exploded for 10 runs. Overall, the Dodgers are outscoring their opponents 64-45 in the first.

Quote to Note: "Any way you want to spin it, I'm getting sent down. They can say they didn't have enough room, but they (brought) me up when they didn't have enough room. All those guys were healthy then. ... Pitching-wise, I don't think I did great by any means, but I don't think I did badly, either. I just wasn't good enough to stick around." -- Dodgers rookie lefty Clayton Kershaw, after unexpectedly being optioned to Class AA Jacksonville on Wednesday.

**M*A*S*H* 4077 Medical Watch
1B-OF Mark Sweeney (strained right hamstring) was placed on the disabled list July 4.

2B Jeff Kent (lower back) left the game July 3 but was back in the lineup July 4.

SS Rafael Furcal (lower back tightness) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to May 6. He was expected to be activated May 23 but was sore that morning. He started a rehab assignment with Class AAA Las Vegas on June 30, and he felt discomfort in his back the next morning. He was examined in Los Angeles on July 2 and will have surgery on July 3 to have a disk in his lower back partially removed. He will miss at least eight more weeks, and that's a best-case scenario.

RHP Brad Penny (mild tendinitis and inflammation in right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 15. His return date has been pushed back until after the All-Star break.

LF Juan Pierre (sprained left medial collateral ligament) went on the 15-day disabled list June 30. He will miss four to six weeks.

RHP Scott Proctor (sore right elbow) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 22.

RHP Hiroki Kuroda (sore right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 13. He had an MRI on June 18 that showed tendinitis but nothing else.

OF Andruw Jones (torn cartilage in right knee) came off the disabled list July 4.

INF Nomar Garciaparra (strained right calf) was activated from the disabled list July 4.

RHP Jason Schmidt (right shoulder surgery in June 2007) opened the season on the 15-day disabled list and was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 20. He began a rehab assignment May 11. He was hit in the calf with a line drive during a rehab start on May 31, and the "new injury" extended his stay in the minors. He pitched for Class AAA Las Vegas on June 28.

C Gary Bennett (plantar fasciitis in left foot) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to May 19, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 25. He had a setback in mid-June and there was no timetable on his return.

INF Tony Abreu (sore right hip) opened the season on the 15-day disabled list, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 13. He had season-ending surgery May 28.

Player Stats - Hitters
Danny Ardoin, C
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.333   3   0   1   1   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.211  19   1   4   1   0   0   2   0
Season      	.211  19   1   4   1   0   0   2   0

Angel Berroa, SS
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.250   4   1   1   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.333   9   1   3   0   0   0   0   0
Season      	.197  66   5  13   2   0   0   0   0

Blake DeWitt, 3B
          	  BA   AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000    3   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.150   20   1   3   1   0   0   2   1
Season      	.256  246  30  63  10   2   5  34   3

Andre Ethier, RF
          	  BA   AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.750    4   2   3   0   0   0   1   0
Last 7 Games   	.406   32  10  13   4   0   3   7   0
Season      	.287  282  44  81  21   0  10  39   2

Nomar Garciaparra, 3B
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.304  23   6   7   2   0   0   4   1
Season      	.263  38   7  10   2   0   1   7   1

Andruw Jones, CF
          	  BA   AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game    	1.000   1   0   1   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.045   22   1   1   0   0   0   1   0
Season      	.161  143  18  23   6   1   2   8   0

Matt Kemp, RF
          	  BA  AB    R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.250   4    1   1   0   0   0   1   1
Last 7 Games   	.250  28    4   7   2   1   0   2   3
Season      	.283  307  42  87  20   3   7  45  19

Jeff Kent, 2B
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.333   3    0   1   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.417  24    2  10   4   0   1   5   0
Season      	.266  267  28  71  15   1   9  39   0

Andy LaRoche, 3B
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000   3   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.105  19   2   2   1   0   1   1   0
Season      	.189  37   3   7   1   0   2   2   0

James Loney, 1B
          	  BA   AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.500    4   0   2   2   0   0   3   0
Last 7 Games   	.333   27   2   9   4   0   1   7   0
Season      	.302  325  40  98  22   4   7  47   3

Russell Martin, C
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.250   4   0   1   0   0   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   	.286  28   6   8   3   0   1   5   2
Season      	.305  305  47  93  17   0   9  42   9

Luis Maza, SS
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000   2   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.167  18   1   3   1   0   0   1   0
Season      	.219  73   6  16   1   0   1   3   0

Juan Pierre, LF
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.333   3   0   1   0   0   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   	.286  28   2   8   0   0   0   0   7
Season      	.277  274  30  76  9   1   0  24  35

Mark Sweeney, 1B
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000   1   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.000   7   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Season      	.094  64   1   6   2   0   0   3   0

Delwyn Young, 2B
          	  BA  AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR  RBI  SB
Last Game     	.000   2   0   0   0   0   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	.190  21   2   4   0   0   0   1   0
Season      	.260  96   7  25   6   0   1   5   0


   PITCHERS

Joe Beimel	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game      27.00   0-0   0   1 0.1   1   1   0   0   0
Last 7 Games   	4.50   0-0   0   3   2   1   1   0   1   0
Season      	1.38   3-0   0  39  26  26   4   0  10  18

Chad Billingsley  ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB  K
Last Game     	0.00   1-0   0   1   8   6   0   0   1   5
Last 7 Games   	1.35   3-0   0   3  20  17   3   0   5  16
Season      	3.12   8-7   0  19 104  90  36   7  46 107

Jonathan Broxton ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   0-0   0   1   1   0   0   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   	4.91   0-0   0   3  3.2  4   2   0   2   2
Season      	3.62   2-2   0  37  37  32  15   2  15  45

Brian Falkenborg ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP    H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   1-0   0   1   1    0   0   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   21.60   1-1   0   3  1.2   3   4   1   1   2
Season      	7.71   1-1   0   6  4.2   3   4   1   2   5

Clayton Kershaw	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	4.76   0-0   0   1  5.2   6   3   0   2   4
Last 7 Games   	5.52   0-1   0   3 14.2  16   9   1   9  12
Season      	4.42   0-2   0   8 38.2  39  19   3  24  33

Hong-Chih Kuo	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   0-0   0   1   2   1   0   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   	2.08   0-0   0   3  4.1  1   1   0   1   5
Season      	1.79   3-1   0  21 50.1  36  10   2  12  60

Hiroki Kuroda	 ERA   W -L  Sv  G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   1-0   0   1   7   5   0   0   1   1
Last 7 Games   	2.95   2-1   0   3  18  14   6   2   5  14
Season      	3.73   4-6   0  15  89  89  37   9  28  51

Derek Lowe	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP    H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	7.20   1-0   0   1   5    8   4   0   0   2
Last 7 Games   	4.66   1-2   0   3  19   22  10   1   3  17
Season      	4.02   6-8   0  19 116  120  52  10  29  84

Chan Ho Park	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	1.50   0-0   0   1   6   3   1   0   3   7
Last 7 Games   	0.68   2-0   0   3  13   9   1   0   3  14
Season      	2.36   4-2   1  24  61  56  16   7  23  48

Brad Penny	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game    	17.18   0-1  0   1  3.2   7   7   2   2   0
Last 7 Games     6.89   0-3  0   3  16   19  12   3   9  10
Season      	 5.88   5-9  0  15  86  101  56   9  36  47

Scott Proctor	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H   ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   0-0   0   1   0    3   4   0   2   0
Last 7 Games   33.75   0-0   0   3  1.1   5   5   0   3   4
Season      	6.82   1-0   0  33   32  36  24   6  22  36

Takashi Saito	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	9.00   0-0   1   1   1   2   1   0   0   1
Last 7 Games   	3.00   0-0   3   3   3   4   1   0   0   1
Season      	2.39   3-3  16  36  38  34  10   1  11  49

Eric Stults	 ERA   W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	2.25   0-0   0   1   4   7   1   1   2   4
Last 7 Games   	2.45   1-1   0   3  18  16   5   2   6  10
Season      	2.22   2-1   0   4  24  22   6   2   7  15

Cory Wade	 ERA   	W-L  Sv   G  IP   H  ER  HR  BB   K
Last Game     	0.00   0-0   0   1  1.1   1   0   0   2   1
Last 7 Games   	2.08   0-0   0   3  4.1   3   1   1   2   3
Season      	2.36   0-1   0  27  34   29   9   3   7  22

LA Dodgers Insider Top Stories