Loretta's Pinch-Single Stops Oakland

The Dodgers shared the load while stopping Oakland 3-2 and recording Joe Torre his 2,195th win. Randy Wolf allowed one run in his six innings, Brent Leach earned he win, Ramon Troncoso earned the save, Orlando Hudson homered and pinch-hitter Mark Loretta knocked in the winning run as the Dodgers moved to 44-23 on the season.

Wolf, who has 10 no-decisions in 15 starts this season, must be wondering what it takes to get a 'W' behind his name. He did almost everything right, allowing five hits and only one run over six innings and -- again -- all he got out of it was 87 pitches thrown.

But Joe Torre realized how important Wolf had been in the win. "To me, the one big star has to be Wolf," said Torre. "He didn't have his good command at all, but he pieced it together, he still battled. He was determined. Because of his experience, he didn't panic. A lot of pitchers would say, 'It's not my day' and throw up their hands and get them next time."

The left-hander struggled with his command. Oakland had runners on base each inning, but he stranded five runners in scoring position. The only run he allowed reached base on one of his four walks.

Wolf may be only 3-2 overall but the Dodgers have won 10 of his 15 starts and seven of his last eight. He has a 3.29 ERA and leads the team in starts and innings pitched, on a seasonal pace for 225.

Closer Jonathan Broxton sat out another night with his sore toe, so Troncoso filled in again and closed the game out, recording his fourth save in five opportunities. Cory Wade got the first out in the seventh, hit the next man and gave up an RBI single to Nomar Garciaparra before and Leach got a clutch double-play ball to close out the seventh inning and earn the win.

Ron Belisario pitched a perfect eighth and got the first batter inn the ninth before allowing a single, giving Troncoso the opportunity to close out the win.

Oakland scored first, using a pair of walks and a double in the third inning to take a 1-0 lead. Hudson answered in the bottom of the inning with his fifth home run, a two-out shot over the center field wall.

Russell Martin beat out an infield single, was bunted to second by Wolf and Juan Pierre knocked him in with a single for a 2-1 lead.

Pierre gave the ball back in the seventh after Wade hit Rajai Davis with a pitch. On Garciaparra's single to left, Pierre tossed the ball to second base and Davis scored all the way from first.

The winning run came in the bottom of the inning when James Loney smacked a ground-rule double to left and Loretta, hitting for Leach, singled to left to drive in the winning run. It was Loretta's team-leading ninth pinch-hit.

Casey Blake had two of the Dodgers eight hits to lead the team.

It was the Dodgers' 16th one-run victory, which leads the league, and they are 13-2 at home. Their division lead is nine games and are a season-high 21 games above .500 as they head to Anaheim for a Freeway Series as their odyssey through the American League continues.

The Dodgers call on RHP Chad Billingsley (9-3, 2.72 ERA) in the opener tonight. He earned his ninth win of the season by beating Texas last Sunday, giving him a share of the National League lead. He has gone six innings in 13 of his 14 starts and he is 2-1, 2.45 against the Angels in five career games.

?He will face LHP Joe Saunders (7-4, 3.66 ERA). who has been winless in his previous three starts, allowing 13 runs in 18 innings. But he pitched into the ninth in his last start against the Padres, allowing only a single run. Saunders is 1-1 in two career outings against the Dodgers with a 2.92 ERA.

  Score by Innings	
Oakland	        103 001 000-5
Los Angeles	000 011 200-4

  Los Angeles	ab r  h  bi  ave
Pierre lf	5  1  1  0  .330
Furcal ss	4  1  1  0  .247
Hudson 2b	4  1  1  1  .310
Loney 1b	4  0  0  0  .280
Blake 3b	4  1  1  0  .301
Ethier rf	4  0  2  2  .270
Kemp cf        	3  0  1  1  .315
Martin c	3  0  0  0  .236
Kuroda p	2  0  0  0  .000
 Loretta ph	1  0  0  0  .234
 Leach p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Mota p	        0  0  0  0  .000
 MJones ph	1  0  1  0  .500
 Belisario p	0  0  0  0  .000
----------------------------------
  Totals	35  4  8  4  
  Oakland	35  5  9  5  

  2B- Pierre (12), Ethier (15).
RBI- Hudson (35), Kemp (37), Ethier
2 (41). 2-out RBI- Hudson. SF- Kemp.
LOB- Los Angeles 10, Oakland 3
SB- Kemp 2 (16).

  Los Angeles	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Kuroda (1-3)	6.0  7  5-5  0  2  3.86
Leach        	1.1  0  0-0  0  1  3.65
Mota       	0.2  1  0-0  0  1  4.94
Belisario	1.0  1  0-0  0  0  2.31
  WP- Kuroda. T- 2:56. Att- 46,274.
   
Joe Passes Sparky
The win over the Athletics gave Joe Torre his 2,195th managerial victory, putting him fifth on the all-time list. defense) to let a victory slip away for the sixth time.

"If you told me a dozen years ago that I'd be in this rarefied air, I'd tell you you're full of baloney—because I certainly started way under .500 when I took over the Yankees in 1996," Torre said. "But I have to thank George Steinbrenner for putting me in a position to do this. I've admired what Sparky did for all those years, and I'm proud to be in that company."

Torre, Bucky Harris and Joe McCarthy managed at one time for the Yankees. Torre, Walter Alston and Leo Durocher managed for the Dodgers.

  Winningest Managers

 1. Connie Mack	        3731
 2. John McGraw	        2763
 3. Tony La Russa       2497
 4. Bobby Cox	        2357
 5. Joe Torre	        2195
 6. Sparky Anderson	2194
 7. Bucky Harris	2157
 8. Joe McCarthy	2125
 9. Walter Alston	2040
10. Leo Durocher        2008
Mississippi GCCC names Rath baseball coach
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College has named assistant coach Gary Rath (pronounced Roth) to the head position.

FA former Dodgers pitcher Rath, 36, had been handling administrative duties after Farris' departure on May 13.

"Gulf Coast has a great tradition in baseball and in all of the athletic programs," Rath said in a statement released by the school. "I'm thankful and humbled that they think well enough of me to lead this team."

A left-handed pitcher, the Long Beach native played from 1992-94 at Mississippi State, where he was named first-team All-SEC and an Academic All-American. The Los Angeles Dodgers drafted him in the second round of the 1994 major league draft.

His big-league career was brief he made eight major league appearances with the Dodgers and the Minnesota Twins from 1998-99 but he pitched professionally for 15 years, including stints in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

Dodger Blue Notes-- Orlando Hudson has 36 RBIs, five short of his total last year, and he leads the Dodgers with 45 runs scored. ...Brent Leach has allowed one run over his last eight innings and Ronald Belisario hasn't allowed a run over his last 6 1/3 innings. ... James McDonald was named Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Week for the week of June 8-15. The 24-year-old went 1-0 with a 0.64 ERA (one earned run, 14 innings pitched) in two starts, striking out 23 batters. ...Scott Elbert has struck out nine or more in four straight starts for Chattanooga, fanning 37 batters in 24 innings in that time. ...Matt Sartor has worked eight consecutive scoreless innings over his last six appearances for Chattanooga, and has allowed just two earned runs in 20.1 innings beginning May 1 for a 0.86 ERA in that time. ...Athletics starter Vin Mazzaro had two sacrifice bunts in his second consecutive game, making him the first A's pitcher with two sacrifices in one game since Ken Holtzman on Aug. 27, 1972 -- the year before the American League adopted the designated hitter rule. ?

LA Dodgers Insider Top Stories