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Dodgers Beat Giants 10-7; Nomar (2-for-4), Jones (4 Ks) Return posted on 07/04/2008

It’s tough to say that the Dodgers, a sub-.500 team in baseball’s worst division, are feeling good this holiday weekend. But inching ever closer to division leader Arizona while welcoming back two injured players left L.A. feeling Reborn on the Fourth of July.

                The Dodgers busted out the big bats on a Friday matinee game, beating up on the archrival Giants to win 10-7 in the opener of the three-game set in San Francisco. L.A. connected for 13 hits, eight of which went for extra bases, while rallying from an early 5-2 deficit. The victory stretched the Dodgers win streak to four, and the Dodgers were also glad to welcome back infielder Nomar Garciaparra and outfielder Andruw Jones.

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All 4-1 and Kuroda for All: Righty Returns from DL, Beats Houston posted on 07/02/2008

Before Wednesday’s game the Dodgers sent rookie pitcher Clayton Kershaw to Triple-A Las Vegas to make room for Hiroki Kuroda, who was coming off the disabled list. While Kershaw has been inconsistent throughout his first major-league stint, Kuroda has been even more so in his first season in the America. Kuroda has had brilliant games, such as his start in May against the Astros, and some horrific outings, such as his last start before the injury, when he gave up six runs in less than three innings in San Diego.

Manager Joe Torre hoped Kuroda could be at least decent, and could get through a few innings to cover for the bullpen tired by the previous game’s 11-inning win. However, with Kuroda there’s been good and bad, and rarely anything in between. On Wednesday, Good Kuroda showed up.

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Kent's 11th-Hour Homer Gives Dodgers Come-From-Ahead Win posted on 07/02/2008

                After coughing up a five-run lead and heading for extra innings, you’d think the Dodger offense would just roll over and die, and drop their fifth straight game to Houston.

                Not so fast. Apparently, these are the new-and-improved Dodgers, who have scored double-digit hits in each of their last two games. True, they lost the first, but last night three old hands were there to right the ship after the youngsters nearly caused it to capsize.

                Jeff Kent hit a solo homer in the 11th inning to give the Dodgers a 7-6, giving them their first win against the Astros this season and crawling back within 2½ of Arizona for first place in the NL West. Also coming up big was Chan-Ho Park, who continues to get it done despite having started the season in Triple-A in favor of, er, Esteban Loiaza. Park got out of a jam in the ninth and pitched a solid tenth for the win. Takashi Saito looked good in the bottom of the 11th, retiring the side in order for his 13th save.

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Dodgers Wallop Three Singles Off Lackey, Drop 1-0 Sunday Snoozer posted on 06/29/2008

                Although baseball has a long and cherished history, the thrill of going to a baseball game is the chance of seeing something unique and unexpected.  Last night the sellout crowd at Dodger Stadium saw the Dodgers win despite recording no hits, and broadcaster Vin Scully claims that in his fifty-plus years calling baseball games he’s never seen such an occurrence (though with the way his memory is aging these days, he might’ve years and years ago). However, seeing such unusual history only takes on meaning when contrasted with the everyday normality that is the slog of a six-month baseball season. The extraordinary only becomes noticed when compared to the ordinary.

                On Sunday the Dodgers reverted to what fans have grown to see as ordinary, once again turning in an impaired offensive performance in a 1-0 loss to the Angels. The Dodgers had infinitely times as many hits that Saturday night’s near no-no, but then infinity times zero is… well, never mind the math. They had three hits, and I can name the extent of Sunday’s offense without even glancing at a box score: a walk by Andre Ethier in the first (erased on a double play) and singles by Jeff Kent in the second, Juan Pierre in the sixth and Delwyn Young in the ninth. The Dodgers then mounted a mini-rally in the ninth, but James Loney hit a weak grounder with the bases loaded to give Frankie Rodriguez his 32nd save.

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Dodgers Get No-Hit by Angels but Still Win 1-0 Slugfest posted on 06/29/2008

The mishaps of the Dodgers’ much-maligned offense have been chronicled in many a-place, including this site. Despite a pitching staff that is reliable at worst and brilliant at best, the Dodger bats frequently cost the team victories in all ways imaginable: not drawing walks, hitting into double plays, failing to produce a big inning, not hitting for power, and failing to come up with enough hits. Earlier this year they scored exactly one run in five of six games, and throughout the year they have been at the bottom of the pack in nearly every offensive category. Derek Lowe probably has it worst, as he has made a living of surrendering one run in seven innings and still getting saddled with the loss; in the last year and a half I think he has lost 240 games by scores of 1-0 or 2-1.

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