Los Angeles at San Francisco

L.A. Dodgers
W: H. Kuroda (6-6) L: M. Cain (13-5)
HR: LA - C. Blake (17)   SF - None

Dodgers roll past rival Giants, match '08 win total

CBSSports.com wire reports

SAN FRANCISCO -- Hiroki Kuroda figures if he got hit with both a ball and a bat within a month he might need to quit pitching and walk away from baseball all together.

Kuroda dodged the barrel of a broken bat that flew in his direction and retired 19 straight during one stretch, Casey Blake homered and the Los Angeles Dodgers matched their 2008 win total by beating the archrival San Francisco Giants 10-3 on Friday night.

Los Angeles (84-58) maintained a two-game division lead over Colorado, which rallied to win at San Diego. The Rockies extended their NL wild-card lead to 5½ games over the Giants.

Kuroda (6-6), making just his second start since missing three weeks after sustaining a concussion Aug. 15 when hit in the head by a line drive, quickly ducked out of the way and off the mound when Matt Cain's bat splintered on his third-inning groundout and sailed onto the dirt past second base. That had to be a scary moment for the right-hander, who gave up two hits to start the second then got 19 straight outs before John Bowker's one-out triple in the eighth.

 Giants' Lincecum (back spasms) plays catch

"At first I didn't know if it was a ball or bat coming at me," Kuroda said through an interpreter. "Since I got a ball hit at my head, I didn't think a bat could get there that fast. If I get hit by a bat, I think I'm going to retire."

Blake returned to the lineup following a five-game absence with a hamstring injury and hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning and James Loney drove in three runs for the first-place Dodgers, who won for the third time in four games.

Kuroda is showing the kind of form that made him so good down the stretch last year, when he also won a game in the NL division series against the Cubs.

"This year I had to go through a lot," he said. "I had to go on the disabled list twice and got hit in the head for the first time in 13 years. ... I was able to keep a really good rhythm this game, close to what I had last year. Of course I would like to finish as strong as I did last year."

He struck out five and didn't walk a batter in eight efficient innings to win for the third time in his last four decisions, bouncing back from a loss to San Diego on Sept. 6. He threw 86 pitches, 55 strikes.

Kuroda retired 21 straight batters against the Braves on July 7, 2008, a one-hit shutout.

Manager Joe Torre was scared when the bat headed toward Kuroda.

"You just sort of shake your head and say, 'You're shooting at this guy,"' Torre said. "In his rehab start, he had a line drive back at him and a bat fly back at him and he didn't flinch at all. You never know how they're going to react."

Blake also singled in a run in the Dodgers' five-run seventh, when Russell Martin hit a two-run double, Manny Ramirez added an RBI single and Loney had a sacrifice fly. Loney's two-run double in the first gave Los Angeles an early lead against Cain (13-5). Matt Kemp hit an RBI double in the eighth.

"It was a huge mistake to Loney and a huge mistake to Blake," Cain said. "I'm disappointed I let the guys down but it's not a situation where we can think negatively. We just can't think like that."

The Dodgers came out with an energy and intensity following an off day Thursday. On Wednesday, they concluded a grueling stretch of 46 games in 48 days.

Los Angeles entered Friday's game without at least a share of the best record in the National League for the first time since May 2 -- and the team's two-game lead in the NL West was its smallest since Aug. 25, when it also led Colorado by the same margin.

San Francisco needs to get back on track in a hurry before it loses even more ground in the playoff chase. The Giants have lost four of five and six of 10, including two of three at home to San Diego before Thursday's off day.

"We've fallen back and now it's up to us to be resilient, be tough about this and bounce back," San Francisco skipper Bruce Bochy said.


  • Both clubs sported red caps in memory of Sept. 11. A moment of silence was held before the national anthem, followed by a flyover.
  • Jim Thome didn't play for the Dodgers as he nurses a left heel injury.
  • C Buster Posey, drafted fifth overall by the Giants in '08, made his highly anticipated major league debut in the eighth. He received a warm ovation and fans chanted his name when he batted in the bottom half. He struck out. "My heart started beating a little harder. I just tried to get loose and enjoy it," Posey said. "It was a fun feeling I know I won't ever have again."
  • Giants slugger Pablo Sandoval sported a new 'do: zigzag cornrows.
  • The Giants' short-season Class-A team, Salem-Keizer (Ore.), won its third Northwest League title in four years Thursday.
  • San Francisco failed to sell out a game with the Dodgers for the fourth time in seven home meetings this year.
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James Loney and Casey Blake combine for four hits, three runs and six RBI in the Dodgers' rout.  (AP)
James Loney and Casey Blake combine for four hits, three runs and six RBI in the Dodgers' rout. (AP)

Players of the Game
Los Angeles

C. Blake
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1
Los Angeles

H. Kuroda
IP 8.0
H 3
ER 2
BB 0
K 5

Related Video

Los Angeles Dodgers
Rafael Furcal, SS5110002 .258
    Mark Loretta, 3B0000000 .223
Andre Ethier, RF5220011 .283
Manny Ramirez, LF4111111 .305
    Juan Pierre, PR-LF0100000 .318
Matt Kemp, CF4221110 .306
    Jason Repko, CF0000000 .000
James Loney, 1B4123001 .281
Casey Blake, 3B3223111 .276
    Juan Castro, 3B-SS1000000 .296
Ronnie Belliard, 2B5010003 .256
Russell Martin, C4022100 .258
    A.J. Ellis, C0000000 .000
Hiroki Kuroda, P2000123 .130
    Ramon Troncoso, P0000000 .000
2B - Matt Kemp (23, Martinez), James Loney (24, Cain), Ronnie Belliard (10, Cain), Russell Martin (17, Howry)
HR - Casey Blake (17, Cain)
SF - James Loney (4)
SH - Hiroki Kuroda (7)
RBI - Manny Ramirez (55), Matt Kemp (90), James Loney 3 (83), Casey Blake 3 (73), Russell Martin 2 (43)
2-OUT RBI - Matt Kemp (35), James Loney 2 (26), Casey Blake 2 (32), Russell Martin 2 (22)
Team LOB - 7
Los Angeles Dodgers
Hiroki Kuroda (W,6-6) 8322050 4.00
Ramon Troncoso 1211000 2.59
Pitches-Strikes - Hiroki Kuroda 86-55, Ramon Troncoso 22-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Hiroki Kuroda 9-10, Ramon Troncoso 2-1
Batters Faced - Hiroki Kuroda 27, Ramon Troncoso 5
San Francisco Giants
Eugenio Velez, LF-CF4000000 .275
Freddy Sanchez, 2B3000020 .293
    Rich Aurilia, 3B1000000 .225
Pablo Sandoval, 1B3000000 .325
    Travis Ishikawa, 1B1110000 .254
Bengie Molina, C3110010 .261
    Kevin Frandsen, 2B1011000 .146
Juan Uribe, 3B3010010 .278
    Joe Martinez, P0000000 .250
   a- Ryan Garko, PH1000001 .270
Nate Schierholtz, RF3001000 .270
Aaron Rowand, CF2000001 .271
    John Bowker, LF1110000 .216
Edgar Renteria, SS2000001 .254
    Ryan Rohlinger, SS1001000 .100
Matt Cain, P1000000 .143
   b- Fred Lewis, PH1000000 .267
    Merkin Valdez, P0000000 .000
    Bob Howry, P0000000 .000
    Buster Posey, C1000010 .000
a-grounded out for Martinez in the 9th
b-grounded out for Cain in the 6th
2B - Kevin Frandsen (2, Troncoso), Juan Uribe (23, Kuroda)
3B - John Bowker (2, Kuroda)
RBI - Kevin Frandsen (1), Nate Schierholtz (29), Ryan Rohlinger (3)
2-OUT RBI - Kevin Frandsen (1)
Team LOB - 2
DP - Uribe-F. Sanchez-Sandoval
San Francisco Giants
Matt Cain (L,13-5) 6744351 2.61
Merkin Valdez0344100 5.72
Bob Howry 1211010 3.49
Joe Martinez 2111100 7.31
IBB - Martin by Matt Cain
WP - Merkin Valdez (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Cain 109-63, Merkin Valdez 20-14, Bob Howry 19-13, Joe Martinez 26-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Cain 7-5, Joe Martinez 4-2
Batters Faced - Matt Cain 27, Merkin Valdez 4, Bob Howry 5, Joe Martinez 8
Game Information
Attendance - 39212
Game Time - 2:49
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - Brian Gorman, First Base - Dan Iassogna, Second Base - Larry Vanover, Third Base - Sam Holbrook