Los Angeles at Milwaukee

L.A. Dodgers «002000030580

Dodgers hold off Brewers to avoid sweep

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

MILWAUKEE -- Jason Schmidt gave his bullpen all the credit for his first victory with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Schmidt escaped a bases-loaded jam of his own in the fifth, and the bullpen gave up three runs but held on as Los Angeles beat Milwaukee 5-4 to avoid being swept by the Brewers on Wednesday.

"We all know how strong that bullpen is here and they kind of proved it," Schmidt said. "(I) stretched them a little thin, and they did a heck of a job, they're the ones that won that ballgame."

It wasn't easy for Schmidt or the rest of the Dodgers.

Schmidt, the former Giants ace who signed a three-year, $47 million contract in December, was the prized acquisition for the pitching staff, while the Dodgers also signed free agent Juan Pierre and Luis Gonzalez for the outfield.

Pierre broke out of his 0-for-8 slump with two hits and a run, and Gonzalez added two hits of his own after starting out hitless in his first seven at-bats.

Manager Grady Little, who was upset before the game because the L.A. media questioned a pitching decision the night before in a key situation, said the first victory of a season is one of the hardest to get.

"It's the same with the ballclub as it is with guys like Juan Pierre and Luis Gonzalez, anybody starting out a season as a player," he said. "It's a tough time, it's tough getting that first hit out of the way, but once that first hit is out of the way, things kind of start falling into place for them."

Things began falling into place for Los Angeles after Little, who could have been second-guessed again Wednesday, showed confidence in Schmidt (1-0) even though he'd walked the bases loaded -- all on 3-2 counts with two outs -- beginning with Brewers starter Jeff Suppan (0-1).

The Dodgers had left-hander Joe Beimel warming up in the bullpen to face lefty Prince Fielder, but Little stuck with Schmidt, who made good on his manager's faith in him by getting Fielder to hit a towering popup to end the inning.

"It was a 2-1 ballgame at the time, I didn't have any room for error," Schmidt said. "I didn't throw anything down the middle to anybody."

Schmidt, who finished with five strikeouts, gave way to Beimel in the sixth, Jonathan Broxton in seventh and Rudy Seanez in the eighth. Seanez ran into trouble and loaded the bases on three one-out singles, and the Dodgers brought in Takashi Saito for a five-out save in his first opportunity of the season.

Saito nearly couldn't hold on. He got out of the eighth after giving up a two-run double to Craig Counsell. J.J. Hardy led off the ninth with a solo homer and Fielder doubled, but Saito retired the next three batters in order.

"I wasn't exactly the sharpest," Saito said. "The result was we won even though my pitching line probably wasn't the best today."

The Dodgers opened a 2-0 lead in the third inning off a mistake by the Brewers.

Nomar Garciaparra's sacrifice fly brought home Pierre, who reached third on Russell Martin's single, but the Dodgers tacked on another run when new center fielder Bill Hall didn't take the correct path to Jeff Kent's liner, allowing Martin to score from first.

Johnny Estrada's RBI double cut the lead to 2-1 in the fourth, but the Dodgers went up 5-1 off pinch hitter Olmedo Saenz's two-run double and Matt Kemp's sacrifice fly in the eighth after Carlos Villanueva walked the bases loaded and was taken out for former Dodgers reliever Elmer Dessens.

"We have a pretty good idea of what he throws," Saenz said of Dessens. "In that situation, I've still got to put a good swing on it."

Suppan, 5-0 in Miller Park when he was with the Cardinals and Pirates, made his debut for the Brewers after signing a four-year, $42 million contract, the largest in Brewers' history.

Suppan settled down after the third inning, needing seven pitches to get through the fourth and three pitches to end the fifth. Suppan was finished after seven innings, giving up seven hits while walking three and striking out two.

"I felt my command as the game went on got better," Suppan said.

But manager Ned Yost said that the Brewers didn't do enough for him.

"We let some big scoring opportunities get away," he said. "We had some balls hit right on the nose, but we didn't get a break."


  • Little said SS Rafael Furcal (sprained left ankle) looked good in the batting cage, but still needed to run before they had a timetable of when he might return.
  • Yost said disgruntled reliever Jose Capellan needs to report to Triple-A Nashville. Capellan has requested a trade, but is expected to report.
  • The Dodgers said Pierre will wear No. 42 on Jackie Robinson Day.
  • It was 30 degrees with flurries at game time.
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Russell Martin tags out Rickie Weeks, who tries to score from third base on J.J. Hardy's hit. (AP)
Russell Martin tags out Rickie Weeks, who tries to score from third base on J.J. Hardy's hit. (AP)

Players of the Game
Los Angeles

J. Schmidt
IP 5.0
H 3
ER 1
BB 3
K 5

G. Jenkins
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0

Related Video

Los Angeles Dodgers
Juan Pierre, CF4120001 .167
Russell Martin, C4110110 .308
Nomar Garciaparra, 1B4001003 .100
Jeff Kent, 2B4111101 .273
Luis Gonzalez, LF3120101 .200
    Brady Clark, LF-RF0000000 .500
Wilson Betemit, 3B1100301 .125
Andre Ethier, RF3000005 .000
    Joe Beimel, P0000000 .000
    Jonathan Broxton, P0000000 .000
   a- Olmedo Saenz, PH1012000 .500
    Rudy Seanez, P0000000 .000
    Wilson Valdez, LF0000000 .000
Ramon Martinez, SS4000005 .125
Jason Schmidt, P2000022 .000
    Matt Kemp, RF1011000 .200
    Takashi Saito, P0000000 .000
a-doubled for Broxton in the 8th
2B - Jeff Kent (1, Suppan), Luis Gonzalez (1, Suppan), Olmedo Saenz (1, Dessens), Matt Kemp (1, Suppan)
SF - Nomar Garciaparra (1), Matt Kemp (1)
SH - Juan Pierre (1)
RBI - Nomar Garciaparra (2), Jeff Kent (2), Olmedo Saenz 2 (2), Matt Kemp (1)
Team LOB - 8
Los Angeles Dodgers
Jason Schmidt (W,1-0) 5311350 1.80
Joe Beimel (H,1) 1200110 0.00
Jonathan Broxton (H,1) 1100000 0.00
Rudy Seanez 0.1322000 13.50
Takashi Saito (S,1) 1.2311011 5.40
IBB - Mench by Joe Beimel
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Schmidt 95-62, Joe Beimel 21-12, Jonathan Broxton 13-6, Rudy Seanez 12-9, Takashi Saito 29-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Schmidt 2-8, Joe Beimel 1-0, Jonathan Broxton 2-1
Batters Faced - Jason Schmidt 21, Joe Beimel 5, Jonathan Broxton 4, Rudy Seanez 4, Takashi Saito 8
Milwaukee Brewers
Rickie Weeks, 2B4010122 .182
J.J. Hardy, SS4111110 .417
Prince Fielder, 1B5010014 .231
Bill Hall, CF5120011 .308
Johnny Estrada, C5121011 .545
Geoff Jenkins, LF5130012 .500
Kevin Mench, RF3010101 .286
Craig Counsell, 3B4012002 .143
Jeff Suppan, P1000100 .000
   a- Corey Hart, PH1000000 .222
    Carlos Villanueva, P0000000 .000
    Elmer Dessens, P0000000 .000
   b- Gabe Gross, PH1000002 .000
    Derrick Turnbow, P0000000 .000
a-flied out for Suppan in the 7th
b-popped out for Dessens in the 8th
2B - Prince Fielder (1, Saito), Johnny Estrada (2, Schmidt), Geoff Jenkins (2, Beimel), Craig Counsell (1, Saito)
3B - Rickie Weeks (1, Broxton)
HR - J.J. Hardy (1, Saito)
RBI - J.J. Hardy (2), Johnny Estrada (2), Craig Counsell 2 (3)
2-OUT RBI - Johnny Estrada (2)
PK - Bill Hall (1, Beimel)
Team LOB - 11
DP - Counsell
Milwaukee Brewers
Jeff Suppan (L,0-1) 7722320 2.57
Carlos Villanueva0033300 0.00
Elmer Dessens 1100000 0.00
Derrick Turnbow 1000010 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Jeff Suppan 90-54, Carlos Villanueva 22-10, Elmer Dessens 11-8, Derrick Turnbow 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jeff Suppan 7-11, Elmer Dessens 1-2
Batters Faced - Jeff Suppan 30, Carlos Villanueva 3, Elmer Dessens 4, Derrick Turnbow 3
Game Information
Attendance - 23649
Game Time - 3:20
Temperature - 60
Umpires - Home - Brian Gorman, First Base - Mike Everitt, Second Base - Gerry Davis, Third Base - John Hirschbeck