LOS ANGELES -- If Dodgers manager Grady Little was planning a cozy, postgame dinner with his wife to celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary, the best they could do was breakfast at one of those all-night joints.
The Dodgers have played 14 or more innings on five occasions this season, and this was the first time they won. A total of 461 pitches were thrown in a game that lasted 4 hours, 54 minutes, with the Dodgers using 20 players and the Reds 22.
"We did a lot of good things. It's just unfortunate that it took us 16 innings to get the biggest thing we needed," Kent said. "We've played good in all the extra-inning ballgames, but we've just been stretching it out too long. You end up getting too tired, using all your guys and not taking advantage of all your opportunities. Ramon hasn't played a lot, so that was good for him and good for us."
It's the first time since June 13 that the Reds don't have at least a share of the lead in the wild-card race, which San Diego leads by a half-game over Cincinnati and Philadelphia. The Reds remain 3½ games behind first-place St. Louis in the NL Central.
"You can't think about anything other than winning ballgames," reliever Scott Schoeneweis said. "We can't worry about what St. Louis is doing, and there are so many teams locked in for the wild card. So it doesn't matter who's playing who -- someone is going to gain some ground. So we just have to go out and concentrate on winning, and the rest will take care of itself. We've got as good a shot as anybody."
Brandon Phillips was 4-for-7 with a home run and two RBI for Cincinnati, but he grounded into an inning-ending double play with runners at the corners in the 10th against reliever Takashi Saito. Adam Dunn also had four hits and Rich Aurilia homered for the Reds, who have lost five in a row.
Rafael Furcal homered for the Dodgers, who maintained their three-game lead in the NL West with their fourth consecutive victory.
Derek Lowe (12-8), who came out of last Saturday's start at Arizona after taking a line drive off his glove hand, made his first relief appearance since the 2004 AL division series and pitched three innings of one-hit ball for the win.
"He's a hard guy to keep in one seat because he's always moving around, so it's good to give him something to do," Kent joked.
Ryan Franklin (5-7), the eighth Cincinnati pitcher, made only one pitch -- which Martinez drove over the fence in left-center for his second homer of the season.
"I wasn't trying to end it. I just wanted to get on base," Martinez said. "I'm not a home run hitter, so I don't even know what was going through my mind when I hit it. I was just running the bases. It was a long game, but we battled through it."
Phillips put Cincinnati ahead 5-4 in the sixth with an RBI single. The Dodgers tied it in the bottom half against reliever Matt Belisle on a bases-loaded RBI single by Furcal with none out.
Edwin Encarnacion, who failed to drive in a runner from third base in each of his first three at-bats Monday night, came up with the bases loaded in the fifth and Cincinnati trailing 4-3. Reds pitcher Eric Milton was forced at the plate on Encarnacion's grounder, but Ryan Freel scored the tying run on a grounder by Ken Griffey Jr.
Phillips put Cincinnati on the board in the second against Mark Hendrickson with his 15th homer and second in two nights. Aurilia sliced the Dodgers' lead to 4-3 in the fourth with his 19th of the season, a two-run shot that followed a leadoff single by Griffey that extended his hitting streak to 14 games.
"You can't count them out. They keep coming at you," Little said. "They hit the ball out of the park, and they've proven they're capable of playing games in September that mean something."
- The Reds optioned LHP Chris Michalak to Class A Sarasota, one day after he gave up four runs and seven hits over four innings in a 6-5 loss and failed to strike out a batter. OF Chris Denorfia was recalled from Triple-A Louisville.
- Jason Repko started in CF for Los Angeles in place of Kenny Lofton, who is 1-for-19 against Milton. Lofton pinch ran in the eighth.