Cole Hamels Blanks Dodgers 3-0

The red-hot Phillies, behind Cole Hamels, the MVP of last year's NLCS and World Series who won both starts against Los Angeles in the playoffs, derailed the Dodgers pennant train, at least temporarily, with a complee-game five-hitter for his third career shutout, and the defending World Series champions extended their winning streak to seven games with a 3-0 victory.

Hamels, is 4-0 with a 2.84 ERA over his last seven outings. He threw 97 pitches, retiring 18 of his last 20 batters and allowing only two runners as far as second base—one of them on defensive indifference in the ninth. He struck out five and didn't walk anyone. He needed only 97 pitches, 67 for strikes during his nine innings.

"If you look at his pitch count, I think after the seventh inning he had about 65 pitches, which is pretty impressive," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said. "There's a definition for pitching: in, out, change speeds, terrific command."

Los Angeles has the best record in baseball at 37-19, with Philadelphia right behind at 32-20. But in the Dodgers' last four games, they've managed just two runs and 15 hits in 28 innings against the opponents' starting pitchers. They came into this four-game series leading the NL in team batting average and runs scored. "You definitely don't want it to develop into a trend, but nobody's panicking around here," Pierre said.

Clayton Kershaw matched the Phillies ace, although using many more pitches, and allowed a pair of runs before leaving in the sixth inning with one out after 105 pitches. The 21-year-old lefty is 0-3 with a 6.64 ERA in four career starts against Philadelphia.

As in previous starts, the young lefthander is very effective but his command is just a little off and he runs out of pitches between the fifth and sixth innings. He struck out five and walked three while allowing only four hits but this night, his teammates just didn't give him any runs to work with.

Kershaw was pitching for the first time in eight days. The Dodgers had him backing up Hiroki Kuroda but he wasn't needed. They have wanted to give Kershaw a little more rest and the layoff didn't seem to affect him.

Philadelphia tagged him for a run in the fourth on a sacrifice fly after Chase Utley had doubled. And a second run scored when Jason Werth singled and scored on Raul Ibanez's double in the sixth. Werth also singled in a run off Cory Wade in the seventh.

The Dodgers were held to five hits but had trouble keeping the runners on base. Hamels was hitting the inside and outside corners of the plate, getting ahead of each hitter and forcing the Dodgers to abandon their working the count attack.

Pierre singled in the first but Rafael Furcal hit into a double play. James Loney singled in the second and Russell Marti hit into a double play. Kershaw double to deep right field in the third but was out attempting to stretch the hit into a double. Andre Ethier doubled to lead off the sixth, then seven in a row went out in order before Matt Kemp singled in the ninth.

"The kid's good, man," said Orlando Hudson, who went 0-for-3 with a strikeout after missing his first game of the season the night before. "What can you say? He throws strikes, he mixes in his offspeed pitches and does a great job of moving the ball in and out, and he gets ground balls."

The Dodgers were shut out at home this season for the first time and were held scoreless for only the second time this season. However, both have come in the past six games, and the Dodgers have been held to two runs or less in six of its last eight games, going 4-4 over that stretch.

"We've faced a lot of good pitching," said shortstop Rafael Furcal, who went 0-for-4 with a strikeout. "The offense is down a little bit, not scoring as much runs, but we've been playing hard and we'll keep it going. We'll see what happens tomorrow."

The Giants beat Washington twice, with Randy Johnson winning his 300th game, and moved to eight games behind the Dodgers.

The Dodgers will send left-hander Eric Milton (2-0, 3.14) to the mound against 45-year-old Jamie Moyer (4-5, 5.86) in the second game of the four-game series.

  Score by Innings
Philadelphia	000 101 100-3
Los Angeles	000 000 000-0

  Los Angeles	ab r  h  bi  ave
Pierre lf	4  0  1  0  .367
Furcal ss	4  0  0  0  .239
Hudson 2b	3  0  0  0  .324
Blake 3b	3  0  0  0  .290
Loney 1b	3  0  1  0  .285
Martin c	3  0  0  0  .263
Ethier rf	3  0  1  0  .263
Kemp cf	        3  0  1  0  .311
Kershaw p	1  0  1  0  .311
 Loretta ph	1  0  0  0  .283
 Hoffmann ph	1  0  0  0  .158
---------------------------------
  Totals   	29  0  5  0  
  Philadelphia	31  3  7  3 

  2B- Ethier (13). LOB- Los Angeles 2, 
Philadelphia 9. 

  Los Angeles	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Kershaw (3-4)	5.1  4  2-2  3  5  4.26
Belisario	0.2  0  0-0  0  0  2.18
Wade	        0.2  2  1-1  1  0  5.12
Leach 	        0.2  0  0-0  0  1  5.19
Mota	        1.2  1  0-0  1  1  6.04
  T- 2:31. Att- 33,839.
Dodgers Blue Notes-- Outfielder Xavier Paul worked out on the field with his teammates for the first time since he was placed on the disabled list on May 22 with a staph infection. ...became the first opposing pitcher to throw a shutout at Dodger Stadium since Arizona's Brandon Webb(notes) on Aug. 5, 2007. ...It was the 45th anniversary of Sandy Koufax's 3-0 no hitter at Connie Mack Stadium. ...The bullpen allowed a run over the final 3.1 innings and has allowed only two in the last 17 innings. ...Kemp's ninth inning single increased his hitting streak to nine games.

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