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Kemp's clutch hit lifts Dodgers over Astros in extras

Aug 13, 2011 - 5:48 AM Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Matt Kemp made sure the Dodgers didn't waste another opportunity.

After Los Angeles failed to score with the bases loaded and nobody out in the ninth, Kemp delivered an RBI single in the 10th to send the Dodgers to a 1-0 victory over the Astros.

Casey Blake began the rally with a leadoff double, and after Houston reliever David Carpenter (0-2) intentionally walked Andre Ethier, Kemp sliced a hit down the right field line to snap Los Angeles' four-game losing streak.

Josh Lindblom (1-0) picked up his first major league victory for pitching a scoreless top of the 10th.

The Dodgers' win was by no means clean or easy. They had eight walks and five hits, left 12 runners on base and went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position.

It was only by virtue of a strong pitching performance from rookie Nathan Eovaldi that they had a chance to come out on top.

Eovaldi, a 2008 draft choice, made his second career start and held Houston scoreless for six innings. Matt Guerrier, Mike MacDougal and Javy Guerra all followed with a shutout inning of relief to keep it a 0-0 game entering the home ninth.

Los Angeles immediately got a chance to win when Juan Rivera opened the inning with his fourth career triple. He entered the game with 838 career hits, 285 of which were for extra bases, but only three of which finished with him standing on third.

But he drove a ball toward center field, and it kept slicing toward the right- center gap, away from Jason Bourgeois. The center fielder missed the diving catch by inches, allowing Rivera to run to third.

After he was removed for pinch-runner Eugenio Velez, Fernando Rodriguez intentionally walked the bases loaded. However, the Dodgers squandered the chance.

Pinch-hitter Tony Gwynn Jr. struck out and Jamey Carroll tapped a ball back to the mound, leading to a force out at home. Aaron Miles then came up and worked the count to 3-1 before taking a strike, and grounded a ball to second base for the inning's final out.

Despite getting out of the jam, Houston couldn't pull out the victory and lost its fourth consecutive game. The Astros have also dropped seven of eight overall.

They received a good start from Bud Norris, who gave up only two hits and walked four in seven innings, while striking out eight.

But, like the Dodgers, the Astros struggled to get a run across the plate. Their best chance came in the fourth with the bases loaded and one out. However, J.D. Martinez lined out to second and Jimmy Paredes flied out.

"Both sides pitched outstanding," said Houston manager Brad Mills. "Bud threw seven innings and did a good job. Any time you lose in extra innings is hard."

Game Notes

Eovaldi had given up two runs in five innings against Arizona in his first start, which came last Saturday. He also struck out seven in that contest and got the win...Kemp recorded his fifth career walkoff hit and third this season...Los Angeles snapped a five-game home losing streak...Houston was coming off an 8-5, 10-inning loss at Arizona. The Astros are 3-7 in extra- inning games this season.