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LA-Cincinnati: Six-Run Seventh, Four Homers Lift Dodgers to 11-4 Win

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LA-Cincinnati: Six-Run Seventh, Four Homers Lift Dodgers to 11-4 Win

The Los Angeles Dodgers exploded for six runs in the seventh inning en route to an 11-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.

Entering the seventh inning with the Dodgers (77-63) in front 5-4, the Reds (56-72) brought on Carlos Fisher to keep the game close.

But the first five batters would reach and come around to score, two on a Juan Pierre single and the big blow coming on a Matt Kemp three-run homer.

It was Kemp’s 20th home run of the season, a career high, and the blast broke the game wide open.

Two batters later, Orlando Hudson added a solo shot to push the lead to 11-4.

The recently stagnant offense exploded to bail Charlie Haeger out of a sub-par outing, as Juan Pierre added a 3-for-5 effort and three other Boys in Blue collected multi-hit games.

Haeger, making his third start of the season, went just two-and-one-third innings, surrendering four runs to the Reds.

He was given an early 4-0 lead by the Blue Crew on the shoulders of a Manny Ramirez first inning, two-run home run.

Ramirez had not homered for 15 games, since an Aug. 11 long ball against San Francisco, and it was his first extra base hit in eight games.

Two more runs were added in the second, but Haeger labored into the third and allowed a leadoff home run to Craig Tatum, the first of his Major League career, and then saw another ball leave the yard later in the inning to slim the lead to 4-3.

The knuckleballer would exit after a Brandon Phillips RBI single erased the Dodgers’ lead completely, and Jeff Weaver retired the final two batters in the four-run third.

Weaver made an outstanding appearance in long relief, working three-and-one-third innings of shutout ball.

He gained the lead when Rafael Furcal went deep in the fifth, giving the Dodgers’ a 5-4 advantage, and then maneuvered his way out of two different bases-loaded jams in the fifth and sixth innings.

In the fifth, the Reds had the bases loaded with no outs, only to see Weaver come back to retire the next three batters in order to escape the jam.

Orlando Hudson made a game-changing play to end the bottom of the sixth and aided Weaver out of another tight situation.

The Reds once again had the bases loaded, this time with two outs, but the All-Star second baseman made a diving stab on a would-be single up the middle and fired a strike to first base for the rally-ending out.

The play saved at least two runs and preserved the 5-4 lead, setting up the six-run seventh.

Tomorrow’s series finale pits Dodgers’ southpaw Clayton Kershaw (8-7, 2.96) against the Reds’ Bronson Arroyo (11-12, 4.43) in the rubber match.

 

 

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LAD

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WP: Weaver (6-4)

LP: Maloney (0-3)

 

Notes from Saturday afternoon

 

Jack of All Trades

Matt Kemp homered from the fourth spot in the order today, making it the seventh different slot in the lineup in which he has gone deep; the only positions he has not homered from are leadoff and third.  

 

PJ Ross is a Featured Columnist for the Los Angeles Dodgers

 

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