Billingsley, Big Bats Bash Bucs

Chad Billingsley does what he does best, pound the strike zone and with only three "regular" starters in the lineup the Dodgers exploded for 16 hits and 10 runs while winning their first game of the young season 10-2. Reed Johnson, Ronnie Belliard and James Loney, breaking an 0-for-9 start, each had three hits with Belliard collecting a double, triple and homer.

Billingsley worked into the sixth inning before hitting the 100 (actually 107) pitch mark and left the game leading 4-0 with a runner at second base. He allowed five hits, walk four and struck out seven, including three in the fourth inning, leaving the bases loaded. Jeff Weaver, Ramon Troncoso, Carlos Monasterios and Jonathan Broxton held the Pirates to three hits and a single run.

Manager Joe Torre "rested" Manny Ramirez, Andre Ethier, Casey Blake, Blake DeWitt and Russell Martin. Ethier had rolled his ankle slightly in the game the night before and he received treatment. It was announced he will not play today (Friday) in Florida.

Their replacements Reed Johnson, Garret Anderson, Ronnie Belliard, Jamie Carroll and Brad Ausmus combined for nine hits, four runs and six runs batted in.

Belliard, on the day after his 35th birthday, celebrated by slamming a double, triple and single and knocking in four runs. In his exuberance, he also made a pair of errors at third base but neither of them cost a run. At the same time, his three extra-base hits lead the team over the first three games.

Johnson was involved in all four scoring innings with an RBI single in the first, a sacrifice that resulted in a run in the third, a leadoff-single in the fifth and a third single in the seventh.

Anderson had a sac fly and an RBI single.

Matt Kemp drove in three runs with a single in the first, a sac fly in the second and an RBI double in the seventh. He also singled and scored in the ninth. Loney, who came into the game 0-for-9, singled three times, scored twice and drove in a run.

As a team, the Dodgers had a horrendous four hits in 28 at bats in the first two games, both losses, but were 7-for-12 in this game.

First Lead of 2010
The Dodgers scored a run in the first inning when Johnson doubled inside the bag at third and sore on Loney's two-out single to center. It marked the first time this year they had led in a game. And when Billingsley's set the Pirates down without a run in the bottom of the frame, it was the first time that had happened in the series.

Rafael Furcal, who had a pair of hits and scored twice, doubled in the third, bouncing the ball into the left-field seats. Johnson bunted him to third and Kemp's fly made it 2-0.

Billingsley was getting a first strike on each batter in the first two innings and retired the first six, pitching around a walk. He allowed a bad-hop single with one out to open the third and gave up a ground single to right but a Jamie Carroll to Furcal to Loney double play ended the threat.

In the fourth he opened the inning with a walk and allowed a single before getting the first out on a strikeout. A walk loaded the bases but he fanned former Dodger Andy LaRoche and pitcher Paul Maholm to end the inning. He stranded two more in the fifth, closing the inning with his seventh strikeout, then left the game with one out when another former Dodger, Delwyn Young, laced the first of two doubles to the right field wall on his 107th pitch.

Weaver allowed a hit and a sac fly that scored Pittsburgh's first run, but it was credited to Billingsley, who was the winning pitcher.

The Dodgers had added two more runs in the fifth inning on Johnson's infield hit and Belliard's home run.

L.A. put the game away in the seventh, running of six straight his good for four runs. Furcal and Johnson singled, Kemp double for the first run, Loney knocked in the second with a single and Belliard drilled a triple off the right field wall to plate the third. He scored on Anderson's RBI single.

Rule V rookie Carlos Monasterios surrendered a pair of hits and a run in he eighth before singles by Kemp, Loney and a double by Belliard, plus Anderson's sac fly accounted for the final two runs.

In the winning effort the Dodgers broke a four-game losing streak in Pittsburgh and left immediately after the game to fly to Miami to meet the Marlins in the first of three games. Hiroki Kuroda, Vicente Padilla and Charlie Haeger will start for Los Angeles.

Repko Signs with Twins
Outfielder Jason Repko, waived by the Dodgers, has signed with the Minnesota Twins. Repko began the 2006 season with the Dodgers as a fourth outfielder. He was getting some playing time until severely spraining his left ankle and missed 67 games. He missed all of the following season when he tore his left hamstring trying to run down a long drive in spring training. He got only 18 at-bats with the Dodgers in 2008 and just five last season. This was his 11th season in the Dodgers' organization.

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