On a blistering Sunday afternoon at Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers (35-40) picked up a 4-3 win against a resilient Indians team (35-41) in the series finale, thanks in part to a four-run outburst in the first inning led by James Loney and Russell Martin.
Loney doubled in Juan Pierre and Matt Kemp while Martin clubbed his seventh home run of the season to give the Dodgers the 4-0 lead in the first.
Chad Billingsley (6-7) pitched five gutsy innings in the sweltering heat, allowing three earned runs and handing the bullpen a one run lead.
Hong Chi-Kuo, Joe Beimel, and Jonathan Broxton preserved the lead until the ninth inning, when Takashi Saito slammed the door to notch his 11th save.
In a series against the Indians when everything seemed to go wrong for the Dodgers as they lost twice in extra innings, the bullpen came through and did their job.
The Dodgers picked up a game on the struggling Arizona Diamondbacks in the division, but they still have a long way to go.
Hopefully for the Dodgers, the quartet of Pierre, Kemp, Loney, and Martin can continue to produce in Rafael Furcal's absence and generate run support.
The Dodgers will challenge the White Sox and Angels in the upcoming six-game homestand. Winning four out of six is not an impossible goal for the Dodgers, as they can continue to gain ground in the division.
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