Kershaw Celebrated Birthday With Homer

Youngsters like to go to Chucky Cheese or perhaps Outback on their birthday, but Clayton Kershaw celebrated his 21st birthday by holding Colorado to one hit over five innings and smacking a home run in the bargain as the Dodgers won a tight, 3-2 decision.

Kershaw worked three perfect innings and homered himself in the last of the third to give Los Angeles a 1-0 lead. Carlos Gonzalez collected the Rockies first hit, a double, leading off the fourth. Gonzalez was doubled off on a line drive to Rafael Furcal and Kershaw faced the minimum of 15 batters in his five innings.

L.A. increased their margin in the fourth when Russell Martin singled and after James Loney was hit by a pitch and an error, he scored on catcher's interference to make it 2-0.

Ethier singled in the fifth and on a perfect hit and run play, Russell Martin doubled him home.

Colorado tagged Eric Stults for a run in the sixth on a double and later a double play ball. Stults couldn't get out of the seventh when a two-out single cut the lead to 3-2.

Nick DeBarr replaced Stults after a walk and a hit batsman, Stephen Randolph ended the inning and further scoring with a strikeout.

Jeff Weaver worked around a single and pitched a scoreless eighth inning and Ramon Troncoso earned a save, although he allowed a hit and a pair of runs.

The Dodgers improve to 10-10 and travel to Surprise, Ariz., to face the Kansas City Royals in the first night game of the season.

Left-hander Eric Milton and right-hander Claudio Vargas, both battling for the fifth starter job, will pitch for the Dodgers. Milton is coming off a shaky outing when he allowed four runs on six hits in three innings.

 Score by innings
Colorado	000 001 100-2
Los Angeles	001 110 00x-3

 Los Angeles		ab r  h  bi  ave
Furcal ss		4  0  1  0  .171
 Ardoin c		0  0  0  0  .308
Hudson 2b		4  0  0  0  .219	
 Weaver p		0  0  0  0  .000
 Troncoso p		0  0  0  0  .000		
Ethier rf		4  1  2  0  .231
 Pascucci 1b		0  0  0  0  .529
Martin c		3  1  2  0  .421
 DeWitt 2b		1  0  0  0  .244			
Loney 1b		3  0  0  0  .227
 Paul pr-rf		0  0  0  0  .425			
Blake 3b		3  0  0  0  .261
 Hu 3b			1  0  0  0  .308
Kemp cf			2  0  0  0  .261
 Repko cf		0  0  0  0  .208		
Pierre lf		2  0  0  1  .189
 Young lf		0  0  0  0  .265
Kershaw p		2  1  1  1  .500
 Stults p		0  0  0  0  .000
 DeBarr	 p		0  0  0  0  .000
 Randolph p		0  0  0  0  .000
 Loretta ph		1  0  0  0  .269
 Luna 3b		0  0  0  0  .182
------------------------------------
 Totals			30 3 6 3
 Colorado		30 2 7 1

 Two-base hits- Martin (3). HR- Kershaw
(1). RBI- Kershaw (1), Pierre (3), 
Martin (7). CS- Ethier (1). LOB- Los
Angeles 8, Colorado 8. DP- Furcal and
Hudson; Hudson, Furcal and Loney; Furcal
Hudson and Loney.

 Los Angeles		 in  h r-er bb so  era
Kershaw			5.0  1  0-0  1  3  3.52
Stults			1.2  4  2-2  1  0 12.00
DeBarr			0.0  0  0-0  1  0  5.40
Randolph		0.1  0  0-0  0  1 12.48
Weaver			1.0  1  0-0  0  1  7.50
Troncoso		1.0  1  0-0  2  0  4.26
 WP- Weaver. HBP- Loney; by Stults, by DeBarr.
T- 2:48. Att- 8,832.
Beimel to Nationals
Lefthander Joe Beimel agreed to terms with Washington on a one- year contract. Beimel has spent three seasons with the Dodgers, going 5-1 with a 2.02 earned run average in 71 games a year ago. His 2008 ERA ranked ninth in baseball among relievers with at least 50 appearances.

The 31-year-old recorded an 11-4 record with three saves and a 3.04 ERA in 216 games with Los Angeles, including a career-high 83 outings in 2007. Beimel previously pitched Pittsburgh, Minnesota and Tampa Bay and Los Angeles.

Manny Going Easy
Manager Joe Torre indicated he will be extra conservative with Ramirez as far as playing the outfield between now and Opening Day.

"There's absolutely no evidence of discomfort in his hamstring," Torre told Ken Gurnick of MLB.com. A tightness in his leg cut short his only attempt to play in the field this spring.


LA Dodgers Insider Top Stories