Hiroki Kuroda has one slight blip in his six innings, allowing a two-out home run to Adam Dunn after Rafael Furcal's error extended the third inning. After the home run in the third, he gave up just one more hit before leaving.
"As you can see, I wasn't at the top of my game today," said Kuroda, "but I got a lot of run support and that really relaxed me."
Furcal made up for the boot, leading the hit parade with four hits and four runs batted in. The Dodgers twice sent 11 men to the plate in an inning.
Every starter, save Andre Ethier, had a hit and seven of them collected runs batted in during a game that was virtually over after four innings.
Kuroda allowed four hits, a pair of singles, a triple and a home run, and walked two while striking out four. Kuroda (8-6) won his third straight start and is rounding into playoff form after two stints on the disabled list during the season.
Ron Belisario pitched a scoreless seventh and Clayton Kershaw made his first appearance since running into the outfield wall in Dodger Stadium while shagging balls during batting practice on September 4.
Despite only 11 games left on the schedule, the Dodgers are not interested in discussing magic numbers, nor is Washington, who is bearing down on the ugly 100-loss marker.
The Dodgers' sixth win in seven games moved them ever closer to clinching a postseason berth and its second straight NL West title for the first time since 1977-78.
"I ain't worrying about the numbers. When it happens, it happens," said Matt Kemp, who had two RBIs. "When I come in here and see all the little covers (over lockers) so we can pour some champagne, that's when I'll worry about pouring some champagne. Until then, we've got work to do."
Kemp's RBI single in the fourth inning extended his current hitting streak to 13 games. Kemp had a 14-game streak earlier this season and a career-best 19-game streak in 2008.
He is now three RBIs shy of 100 on the season, and a remarkable milestone. The three ribbies would make him the first Los Angeles Dodgers player to hit .300 with 25 homers, 100 RBIs and 30 steals.
Casey Blake slugged a two-run home run in the seventh to give the Dodgers homers in 11 straight games. James Loney had three hits and two RBI.
Belliard raised his Dodgers average to .322 and he also knocked in a run, giving him 15 RBI in the 17 games he has played in Dodger Blue. He was hitting just .246 with five homers in 86 games with the Nationals through before the trade Aug. 30.
Left-hander Victor Garate, who along with John Garcia went to Washington inn the Belliard trade, faced two men in the seven thinning, allowing a two run single to Furcal and walking Ethier before getting the hook. His ERA with the Nationals soared to 22.50.
Manny Ramirez followed Furcal's double in the third with a shot inside the third base bag to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.
Furcal's error and Dunn's home run helped the Nationals take a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the inning.
But their lead disappeared in the seven-run fourth inning. Loney, Blake and Belliard singled to quickly tie things up. Russ Martin walked. After Kuroda flew to right field, Furcal singled for two more, Ethier's ground ball drove in the fourth run of the inning, Kemp had an RBI single and Loney collected his second hit of the inning, a shot off the right field wall for the final two runs.
In the big seventh, Loney lived on an error and Blake drove a shot into the left-field seats, his 18th home run of the season. Furcal's two run single, Jason Repko's sac fly and Kemp's fielder's choice ground ball completed the scoring.
Belisario and Kershaw closed the game out with three shutout innings. The 21-year-old left-hander threw 39 pitches, 24 for strikes. Kershaw was happy to be back out on the mound.
"I don't care when I pitch, just as long as I get to -- I'm just happy to be back," he said. "It's exciting for me to be out there again and get my feet wet. I wasn't too worried about anything, really. It felt great. Tonight I feel fine, my shoulder feels great, no ache or anything."
Tonight the Dodgers hand the ball to RHP Chad Billingsley (12-10, 4.05 ERA) who is searching for the answer to his second-half problems. After a 9-3 start, he has fallen on hard times. He is 3-0 with a 2.61 ERA in his career against the Nationals.
Washington starts LHP Ross Detwiler (0-6, 5.80 ERA) who is making his second Major League start since pitching for AAA Syracuse earlier in the month. In that start he worked five innings and allowed the
Score by Innings Los Angeles 001 700 600-14 Washington 002 000 000- 2 Dodgers ab r h bi ave Furcal ss 5 2 4 4 .262 Castro ss-2b 1 1 0 0 .288 Ethier rf 3 0 0 1 .281 Pierre ph-lf 1 0 0 0 .314 Ramirez lf 3 1 1 1 .302 Repko ph-rf 1 0 0 1 .000 Kemp cf 5 1 1 2 .306 Loney 1b 5 2 3 2 .286 Blake 3b 4 2 2 2 .280 DeWitt ph-1b 1 0 0 0 .158 Belliard 2b 3 2 2 1 .264 Thome ph 1 0 0 0 .158 Kershaw p 0 0 0 0 .109 Martin c 2 2 1 0 .256 Ellis c 1 0 0 0 .000 Kuroda p 3 1 1 0 .143 Belisario p 0 0 0 0 .000 Hu ph-ss 1 0 0 0 .000 ---------------------------------- Totals 40 14 15 14 Washington 31 2 4 2 Error- Furcal (19). 2B- Furcal (26), Ramirez (23), Loney (25), Belliard (12). HR- Blake (18). RBI- Ramirez (60), Billiard (37), Furcal 4 (44), Ethier (102), Kemp 2 (97), Loney 2 (89), Blake 2 (77), Repko (1). S- Kuroda. SF- Repko. LOB- Los Angeles 7, Washington 7. DP- Blake, Belliard and Loney. Dodgers in h r-er bb so era Kuroda (8-6) 6.0 4 2-0 2 6 3.65 Belisario 1.0 0 0-0 1 0 1.89 Kershaw 2.0 0 0-0 1 4 2.85 HBP- Martin. T- 2:56. Att- 18,518.Honor for Lasorda
On the Dodgers day off, Dodger Special Advisor to the Chairman and Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda had his portrait unveiled and hung at the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution.
Lasorda celebrated his 82nd birthday with more than 100 of his closest friends and family who attended the ceremony.
He becomes the ninth member of the Dodger family to be portrayed in the gallery, joining Don Drysdale, Leo Durocher, Walter Alston, Sandy Koufax, Gil Hodges, Branch Rickey, Jackie Robinson, and Wilbert Robinson.
Dodgers Blue Notes-- The Dodgers have won 91 of their first 151 games and have the best record in the National League with an 91-60 mark, 2.5 games better than the Phillies (88-62). ...If Kemp collects three more RBI, it will be the first time two Dodgers hit the century mark since 2001 – Shawn Green (125) and Gary Sheffield (100). Ethier is also tied for third in the NL with 41 doubles, two behind San Francisco's Pablo Sandoval for the lead. The last Dodger to lead the league in doubles was Wes Parker (47 in 1970). Ethier also ranks fourth in the NL with 75 extra base hits. ...A contingent of Dodger players, coaches, broadcasters and staff members visited the White House for a private tour. Today a group of Dodgers will visit Walter Reed Medical Center to spend time with several veterans for the third year in a row.