Dodgers-Padres: Matt Kemp's Bat and Glove Are Keys to Dodgers' Win

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Dodgers-Padres: Matt Kemp's Bat and Glove Are Keys to Dodgers' Win
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Matt Kemp gets two hits and saves four runs from scoring with two great catches as the Los Angeles Dodgers come from behind twice to defeat the San Diego Padres Thursday 8-5 at Dodger Stadium.

Pitcher James McDonald started off strong by retiring the Padres in order in the first inning. The offense responded by getting a run off of Josh Geer in the bottom half of the inning with a Manny Ramirez double followed by a Andre Ethier single.

Smiles turned quickly into frowns as McDonald's control problems resurfaced in the second inning. 

Entering the game with a 7.11 ERA, James McDonald will soon be working at a 7-Eleven if he doesn't start throwing strikes. He didn't make it out of the second inning as he gave up two hits, four walks, and three runs while recording just two outs.

Just recalled from Albuquerque, Jeff Weaver was called upon two put out the fire.  He immediately walked David Eckstein to load the bases. 

Jody Geret appeared to open the flood gates as he hit a drive to centerfield.  Matt Kemp made a fine back-handed catch to keep the bases from clearing. 

Kemp kept another run from scoring in the sixth inning by making a diving catch of a sinking liner off the bat of Kevin Kouzmanoff.

The Dodgers gained control of the game again in the bottom of the third when a Rafael Furcal double was followed by back-to-back home runs by Orlando Hudson and Manny Ramirez.

The Dodgers kept their 4-3 lead until the seventh inning.  Will Ohman replaced a tired Weaver and recorded one out in the sixth.  However, he walked Jody Gerut and Adrian Gonzalez doubled to right-center to score Gerut and tie the game.

Chase Headley then singled off Ronald Belisario.  The Padres took the lead on a RBI grounder by Kouzmanoff.

Luke Gregerson relieved Geer in the bottom of the seventh and immediately got into trouble.  Kemp led the inning off with a single and a single by Casey Blake put men on the corners with nobody out.

Mark Loretta got a pitch-hit single to score Kemp.

An Orlando Hudson single appeared to load the bases as Casey Blake was going to be held at third base but right fielder Brian Giles' throw home bounced past catcher Nick Hundley and Blake scored on the error charged to Hundley.

Cory Wade, just activated off the disabled list, threw a perfect eight inning on five pitches.

The Dodgers scored two runs off of Padre pitcher Edward Mujica in the bottom of the inning  when a double by Kemp scored  James Loney who previously singled to center.  Kemp later scored when Blake also singled to center.

Jonathan Broxton walked Gerut to start the ninth. He then struck out Gonzalez, Headley, and Kouzmanoff to earn his seventh save. 

Belisario recorded the win, and Gregerson was charged with the loss.

 

Notes

The Dodgers are now 7-0 at home.  The last time that happened was in 1947.

Tonight's win put the Dodgers at 15-8, their best April since 2005.

Jeff Weaver's last major league appearance before tonight was in 2007 with the Seattle Mariners

Manny Ramirez is now 17th on the all-time home run list just two behind Jimmie Foxx.

Mark Loretta is now 7-10 as a pitch hitter this season.

Adrian Gonzalez has a hit in 12 straight games for the Padres.

Tomorrow's Matchup: Jake Peavy versus Clayton Kershaw.  Tomorrow is Fireworks Friday so be there or be somewhere else.

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