Mets Errors, Mistakes Give Dodgers 3-2 Win

In a game resembling William Shakespeare's "Comedy of Errors," Los Angeles didn't score for nine innings, managed only five hits (all singles), their leading hitter didn't, were without their two top home run hitters and failed to support starter Randy Wolf. Sounds like a disaster but the Mets eliminated a run of their own and gave the Dodgers a run in the 11th and a 3-2 win.

The Dodgers scored twice in the first inning on a walk, a hit-batsman, a single and a sacrifice fly and then were held scoreless until two New York errors in the 11th gave them a gift run and their Major League-leading record moved to 27-13, the third best mark in club history. Only the 1955 and 1977 team's 30-10 stand above it.

With the game tied 2-2 in the last of the 11th, Mark Loretta drew a walk. Center fielder Carlos Beltran and left fielder Pagan couldn't decided who was going to take Xavier Paul's fly ball and it fell between them for an error on Beltran, with Loretta taking third and Paul second.

Juan Pierre was walked intentionally to load the bases for Rafael Furcal, with the Mets bringing in Beltran as a fifth infielder. Furcal flied to short left before Hudson, who couldn't get the ball out of the five-man infield, hit a ground ball to Jeremy Reed who threw wildly to home plate to give the Dodgers a win.

"It was just wacky," said Loretta, speaking for both sides. "Never seen anything like it."

New York had a run in the top of the 11th that would have done credit to the 1962 team that lost 162 games. Ryan Church singled off Ramon Troncoso with two outs and came around to score on Angel Pagan's booming triple that rolled to the wall in right center. But Church missed third base and the Dodgers retired him on an appeal play. So instead of an RBI triple, Pagan had to settle for a single, his fourth hit of the game.

New York was without cleanup hitter Carlos Delgado and both shortstop Jose Reyes and his backup, Alex Cora. Former Dodger Ramon Martinez was called up from AAA to play shortstop and ended up making two errors. However, he did knock in the first Mets' run.

In the Dodgers' first inning, Pierre walked and Furcal singled to right, Pierre ending up at third. Hudson forced Furcal as Pierre scored and after Russ Martin was hit by a pitch, James Loney's sacrifice hit drove in the second run.

Los Angeles managed only four more hits over the final 10 innings. Hudson singled in the fifth, Furcal singled again in the seventh, Loney singled in the eighth and Hudson got his second hit in the ninth.

The Mets helped as much as they could, making five errors during the night. They also banged out 11 hits and left 11 on base.

Randy Wolf made his ninth start and while the Dodgers have won five of them, he has only had three decisions, winning two of the three. He has had no decisions in six of his last seven starts.

Wolf has a 1.45 ERA in his past five starts and lowered his eRA to 2.72. "That's the best he's pitched in a long time," said Torre. "His pitch count [96] made it tough to make a decision to take him out."

After Wolf had yielded two runs on six hits when he left the game with two out in the eighth and Cory Wade recorded the final out of the inning but not before allowing an RBI single to former Dodger Gary Sheffield. Jonathan Broxton worked a scoreless eighth before Troncoso pitched the final two innings, allowing three hits but no runs.

The Dodgers have won five of their last six games, after dropping four of their first five following Ramirez's 50-game suspension. They 14 games over .500 for the first time since finishing the 2006 season 88-74.

After the game, manager Joe Torre barely suppressing a smile, told the team, "It's OK, guys, tomorrow we'll beat them." His team was 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left 14 on base.

The Dodgers have won five of six, are 15-3 at home and 3-1 in extra-inning games.

  Score by Innings
NY Mets	        010 000 010 00-2
LA Dodgers	200 000 000 01-3

  Dodgers	ab r  h bi  ave
Pierre lf	3  1  0  0  .403
Furcal ss	6  1  2  0  .237
Hudson 2b	5  0  2  1  .341
Ethier rf	5  0  0  0  .264
 Troncoso p	0  0  0  0  .000
Martin c	4  0  0  0  .272
Loney 1b	3  0  1  1  .273
Kemp cf	        5  0  0  0  .277
Castro 3b	2  0  0  0  .409
 Loretta ph 3b	1  1  0  0  .359
Wolf p	        3  0  0  0  .000
 Wade p	        0  0  0  0  .000
 Broxton p	0  0  0  0  .000
Paul ph rf	2  0  0  0  .273
  Totals 	39 3  5 2
  NY Mets	42 2 11 2
 RBI- Hudson (26), Loney (28). SF- Loney.
LOB- Dodgers 14, NY Mets 11. SB- Loney
(2). CS- Furcal (3). DP- Furcal, Hudson
and Loney.

  Dodgers	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Wolf	        7.2  6  2-2  2  2  2.72
Wade	        0.1  1  0-0  1  0  4.50
Broxton 	1.0  1  0-0  0  1  1.42
Troncoso (1-0)	2.0  3  0-0  1  1  1.82
  HBP- Martin. T- 3:41. Att- 37,136.     
Kuroda Takes Another Step
Disabled Opening Day starter Hiroki Kuroda pitched a three-inning simulated game at Dodger Stadium. Torre said They will start a Minor League rehab assignment Friday night if he feels no ill effects today from the strained left oblique muscle that has had him on the sidelines since April 7.

"I think he'll need two rehab starts at a minimum." Torre said. "Nothing bothered him, he didn't feel a thing."

Kuroda pitched Juan Castro and Xavier Paul behind a protective screen the first two innings, resting between innings. He pitched the final inning without the screen at Torre's request.

"Whether he realizes it or not," Torre said, "you don't finish off the breaking ball with the screen in front. He seemed fine." Kuroda concurred.

Kuroda was a bit hesitant. "Physically, yes," he said. "Mentally, there might be a little fear, but I'll get rid of it by throwing in game situations."

Blake's Injury Not serious
Third baseman Casey Blake was scratched from the lineup with a strained left hamstring he said he felt running out a grounder in the ninth inning Saturday night at Florida. He said it wasn't serious.

"He was useable tonight," manager Joe Torre said. "Taking the game off yesterday, he'll benefit from two days. I'd rather be safe and see what it is tomorrow."

Dodger Blue Notes
--The game, the 40th of the season, was one-quarter mark of the season. Through 40 games in 2008, the Dodgers were 21-19 and in second place in the National League West Division, 4.5 games behind Arizona (26-15). ...The Dodgers have been in sole possession of first place for 30 consecutive days beginning April 19, and has had at least a share of first place for 33 straight days beginning April 15.  They returned home after a 4-2 road trip that included series wins at Philadelphia (2-1) and Florida (2-1). ...The Mets series third straight against an NL East opponent and they won't play another NL East team until June 5-7, when the Phillies come to town for a three-game series. The Dodgers are unbeaten in 10 of their 13 series, going 8-3-2.  The only series losses are to Houston and San Francisco, losing two of three at Minute Maid Park from April 21-23, two of three at AT&T Park from April 27-29, and vs. the Giants at Dodger Stadium from May 8-10. ...The Dodgers lead the National League with 224 runs scored and rank second in the Majors behind only Toronto's 231.  Los Angeles also ranks third in the Majors with a .287 batting average, trailing only the Mets at .292 and the Blue Jays at .291.  A list of a few offensive categories for the Dodgers and Mets and where they rank in Major League Baseball:  

                                             Probable Starters for the final two games of the series:
                                                                      Tuesday, May 19 - RHP John Maine (3-2, 4.24) vs. RHP Chad Billingsley (5-1, 2.30)

               Wednesday, May 20 RHP Livan Hernandez (3-1, 5.59) vs. LHP Eric Stults (4-1, 3.82).