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Dodgers' Penny races to 13th win with help of Betemit's HR

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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LOS ANGELES -- Brad Penny and the Los Angeles Dodgers are enjoying this stretch of their topsy-turvy season.

Penny became the NL's first 13-game winner, recently acquired Wilson Betemit hit a tiebreaking two-run homer and the Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants 6-5 Saturday.

Rookie James Loney tripled, doubled and scored twice for NL West-leading Los Angeles, which has won 14 of 15 after a 1-13 slide coming out of the All-Star break.

"Everybody was quiet and down before, and now everybody's having fun," Penny said. "We're out there playing like we all thought we could play. You go out there every day expecting to win, and your whole attitude changes.

"This is a huge stretch right here. After we play the Marlins we've got the Giants again and then San Diego and Arizona. So I couldn't think of a better time to start playing this good."

Moises Alou and Omar Vizquel each drove in two runs for San Francisco, which has lost four straight. The last-place Giants are 6½ games behind Los Angeles after falling a season-worst eight games under .500.

Penny (13-5) won his third straight start, allowing four runs -- three earned -- and seven hits over six innings. The right-hander struck out seven and did not walk a batter for the second consecutive outing.

The Giants closed to 6-5 in the seventh with doubles by pinch-hitter Todd Linden and Vizquel against Giovanni Carrara. Lefty Joe Beimel came in and walked Ray Durham before retiring Barry Bonds on an inning-ending grounder with runners at the corners. The play was made by shortstop Rafael Furcal with the Dodgers playing a three-man shift on the right side of the infield.

Bonds is 1-for-9 lifetime against Beimel -- with a home run.

"I'll take that anytime," the 29-year-old reliever said with a grin. "I knew Durham was hitting pretty well off left-handers this year, and I didn't want to give in to him.

"Barry's one of the greatest hitters of all time -- but at the same time, he's not having the kind of year he's had in the past."

Jonathan Broxton pitched a perfect eighth inning and Takashi Saito worked the ninth for his 13th save in 14 attempts. Steve Finley flied out to the warning track for the second straight time with a runner on base, and then Saito retired Vizquel on a groundout to first base to end it.

San Francisco has dropped 15 of 18 after a season-high five-game winning streak, and won just one of its last 12 on the road. Matt Cain (8-9) allowed six runs and a career-high 10 hits in four-plus innings against a lineup that included three rookies like himself.

Betemit snapped a 4-4 tie in the fifth with his 13th home run and fourth since joining the Dodgers on July 28 in a trade with Atlanta. The drive into the right-field pavilion came on a 3-1 pitch -- Cain's last one of the game.

Trailing 3-0, San Francisco tied it in the fourth on Durham's RBI single and a two-run single by Alou. Sandwiched between those hits was a double by Bonds, who was 1-for-4 and has gone 22 at-bats since his previous home run on Aug. 4 against Colorado.

The Dodgers regained the lead in the bottom half when Loney led off with a double, advanced on Penny's sacrifice bunt and scored on a single by Furcal, who is hitting .365 with runners in scoring position.

"That's the worst feeling you can have -- to sit there and watch the team battle back and get runs for you and then you go back out there and give it back," Cain said. "That's not acceptable. That's terrible. That's probably one of the most upsetting things for me."

The Giants pulled even again in the fifth, thanks to some typical hustle by the 40-year-old Finley. He hit a two-out grounder to second baseman Julio Lugo, who bobbled the ball for an instant. That's all it took for Finley to beat the throw and stick Lugo with an error. Finley stole second and scored on a single by Vizquel that extended his hitting streak to 11 games.

It was the first unearned run allowed this season by Penny, who gave up only two in 29 starts last year.

The Dodgers grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first on Lugo's RBI double and J.D. Drew's run-scoring single. They made it 3-0 in the second when Loney tripled and scored on a popup by Penny that second baseman Durham lost in the sun.

Notes

  • After the game, the Giants optioned RHP Brian Wilson to Triple-A Fresno and recalled LHP Jack Taschner from Fresno.
  • The Dodgers acquired C Einar Diaz from Cleveland for cash. Diaz will report to Triple-A Las Vegas.
  • Bonds, an eight-time Gold Glove winner, has made 81 starts in left field this season and has yet to commit an error. The fewest he ever made over a full big league season was one -- in 1989 with Pittsburgh and 1996 with the Giants. He had none last year, but was limited to only 14 games because of three knee operations.
  • Every team in the NL West has now spent at least 20 days in first place, and no fewer than 22 days in last place.
  • Bonds needs 44 more total bases to tie Pete Rose for sixth place on the career list at 5,752.
  • Dodgers rookie Andre Ethier extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a single his first time up.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Brad Penny walks none and strikes out seven over six innings in winning his third straight start.  (AP)
Brad Penny walks none and strikes out seven over six innings in winning his third straight start. (AP)

Players of the Game
Los Angeles

W. Betemit
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
San Francisco

S. Finley
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 

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San Francisco Giants
Steve Finley, CF5220002
Omar Vizquel, SS4022002
Ray Durham, 2B3111101
Barry Bonds, LF4110012
Moises Alou, RF4022000
Mark Sweeney, 1B4000022
Pedro Feliz, 3B4000022
Eliezer Alfonzo, C4000030
Matt Cain, P2000020
    Jamey Wright, P0000000
   a- Todd Linden, PH1110000
    Brian Wilson, P0000000
   b- Randy Winn, PH1010000
Totals36510511011 
a-doubled for Wright in the 7th
b-singled for Wilson in the 9th
Batting
2B - Steve Finley (, Penny), Omar Vizquel (, Carrara), Barry Bonds (, Penny), Todd Linden (, Carrara)
SH - Omar Vizquel ()
RBI - Omar Vizquel 2 (), Ray Durham (), Moises Alou 2 ()
2-OUT RBI - Omar Vizquel 2 ()
SB - Steve Finley (, 2nd base off Penny/Martin), Omar Vizquel (, 3rd base off Beimel/Martin)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Durham-Vizquel-Sweeney, Sweeney-Vizquel
San Francisco Giants
Matt Cain (L,-) 41066341
Jamey Wright 2300010
Brian Wilson 2100010
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Cain 95-56, Jamey Wright 32-22, Brian Wilson 21-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Cain 3-4, Jamey Wright 2-2, Brian Wilson 2-2
Batters Faced - Matt Cain 24, Jamey Wright 8, Brian Wilson 6
Los Angeles Dodgers
Rafael Furcal, SS4011100
Kenny Lofton, CF4120101
    Takashi Saito, P0000000
Julio Lugo, 2B3121102
J.D. Drew, RF4011017
Andre Ethier, LF4120012
Wilson Betemit, 3B4122011
Russell Martin, C4010031
James Loney, 1B4220001
Brad Penny, P2011000
    Giovanni Carrara, P0000000
    Joe Beimel, P0000000
    Jonathan Broxton, P0000000
   a- Nomar Garciaparra, PH1000000
    Jason Repko, CF0000000
Totals3461463615 
a-flied out for Broxton in the 8th
Batting
2B - Julio Lugo (, Cain), James Loney (, Cain)
3B - James Loney (, Cain)
HR - Wilson Betemit (, Cain)
SH - Brad Penny ()
RBI - Rafael Furcal (), Julio Lugo (), J.D. Drew (), Wilson Betemit 2 (), Brad Penny ()
SB - Rafael Furcal (, 2nd base off Cain/Alfonzo)
CS - Russell Martin (, 2nd base by Wright/Alfonzo)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Lugo-Furcal-Loney
E - Andre Ethier (, ), Julio Lugo (, )
Los Angeles Dodgers
Brad Penny (W,-) 6743070
Giovanni Carrara (H,) 0.2211010
Joe Beimel (H,) 0.1000100
Jonathan Broxton (H,) 1000010
Takashi Saito (S,) 1100010
Pitches-Strikes - Brad Penny 103-66, Giovanni Carrara 18-13, Joe Beimel 7-2, Jonathan Broxton 12-7, Takashi Saito 19-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brad Penny 6-5, Joe Beimel 1-0, Takashi Saito 1-1
Batters Faced - Brad Penny 25, Giovanni Carrara 4, Joe Beimel 2, Jonathan Broxton 3, Takashi Saito 4
Game Information
Attendance - 46444
Game Time - 3:04
Temperature - 84
Umpires - Home - Larry Poncino, First Base - Ed Hickox, Second Base - Gary Darling, Third Base - Bruce Dreckman