LOS ANGELES -- Barry Bonds wasn't available Saturday, leaving the San Francisco Giants without their cleanup hitter.
Manager Felipe Alou went with an unlikely replacement in Ray Durham, a 5-foot-8 switch-hitting second baseman who's never hit more than 20 homers in any of his 11 major league seasons.
It turned out to be the perfect choice.
Bonds didn't play because of a sore right knee, but said he hopes to start Sunday in the final game before the All-Star break. Bonds said he caught a spike in the dirt while taking his first swing Friday night and twisted his knee, but he still managed to hit his 720th career homer in his second at-bat.
Durham, batting cleanup for just the third time this season, drove a 2-0 pitch from Derek Lowe into the right-field bullpen in the first to give the Giants a 4-0 lead.
Durham also walked and scored in the third, singled, stole a base and scored in the fifth, and was walked intentionally and scored one of San Francisco's three runs in the ninth.
"Today, he looks like a genius," a smiling Durham said of Alou. "It just worked for me today. That's B's job. I commend Felipe for having the trust in me to put me in that position, to drive in runs."
Lowry (4-5) earned the win despite allowing nine hits and four runs in 5 1/3 innings. He homered off Lowe leading off the fourth, hitting a 2-1 pitch into the left-field bullpen.
"I just got lucky, I ran into it," the 25-year-old Lowry said, adding it was the first homer he's hit since college.
The Dodgers cut the Giants' lead to 8-7 on pinch-hitter Olmedo Saenz's two-run homer off Brian Wilson in the eighth, but Pedro Feliz hit an RBI single and Steve Finley added a two-run triple with two outs in the ninth off Jonathan Broxton.
Armando Benitez, the sixth San Francisco pitcher, got the last four outs for his 10th save in 14 chances. Pinch-hitter Russell Martin flied to left with the bases loaded to end the game.
The first inning was a disaster for Lowe (7-5), who gave up four hits and a walk to the first five batters. Randy Winn walked and Omar Vizquel and Moises Alou singled to produce one run before Durham hit his 12th homer. Feliz added a single before Lowe retired the next three batters.
"Obviously, I'm in a little bit of a funk," Lowe said. "I mean, four runs before you get an out. I think clearly, there's something's going on that we will figure out before the next start, as far as what's going on mechanically to cause the inconsistency. I let the team down."
The Dodgers scored three times off Lowry in the second on a two-run single by Toby Hall and a broken-bat RBI single by Rafael Furcal, but the Giants got a run back in the third on Todd Greene's two-out, RBI single.
Lowry's homer made it 6-3, and Greene hit another two-out, run-scoring single in the fifth to chase Lowe.
The Dodgers scored once in the sixth, but blew a chance for more. Kevin Correia relieved Lowry with one on and one out, and gave up a single to Hall and a walk to pinch-hitter Andre Ethier to load the bases. Jonathan Sanchez relieved and walked Furcal to force in a run before retiring Jose Cruz Jr. on a fly to shallow right and Nomar Garciaparra on a liner to center.
Alou opened the seventh by hitting a full-count pitch from Joe Beimel into the lower left-field seats for his 10th homer to make it 8-4.
Hall hit an RBI single in the bottom of the seventh before Saenz came through with the ninth pinch-hit homer of his career. But the Dodgers wouldn't score again.
Lowe allowed eight hits and seven runs in 4 2/3 innings -- his shortest outing of the season. His ERA went from 3.49 to 3.88. He entered with a 5-2 record and a 2.73 ERA at Dodger Stadium.
"Outside of the balls that left the park, it wasn't that bad," Dodgers manager Grady Little said. "But the balls that leave the park just kind of magnifies the situation. As the case may be, we should have had some taller outfielders in a couple of cases."
- Dodgers 2B Jeff Kent sat out his fifth straight game because of a strained muscle in his left side, and CF Kenny Lofton didn't play either. Lofton left Friday night's game with tightness in his right hamstring after running out a sacrifice bunt in the first inning.
- Lowry went 1-for-3, giving him three hits in 21 at-bats this season and 26 hits in 115 lifetime at-bats for a .226 average.
- Garciaparra singled in the first to extend his hitting streak to 20 games. Teammate J.D. Drew went hitless in four official at-bats, ending his 13-game hitting streak.
- Bonds is hitless in six lifetime at-bats against Lowe.
- Hall had three hits and drove in three runs -- his first RBIs since being traded to the Dodgers by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays on June 27.