for this game

Kuroda, Ramirez power Dodgers past Pirates

Sep 16, 2008 - 3:19 AM By Chris Adamski PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- Manny Ramirez continues to lead the revitalized Los Angeles Dodgers' offense that keeps scoring in bunches. Thanks to Hiroki Kuroda's pitching on Monday night, they hardly needed any of it.

Los Angeles won for the 13th time in its past 15 games - scoring at least five runs in each of those victories - and Kuroda pitched seven shutout innings as the Dodgers continued on their September march toward a National League West title with an 8-2 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Dodgers (78-72) now are five games in front of the Arizona Diamondbacks (72-76) in the NL West standings. The Diamondbacks play at the San Francisco Giants later Monday night.

"Kuroda was great, just great," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said. "He was terrific. His pitch count was great. It was just a really good outing for him."

After allowing hits to the first two batters of the game, Kuroda (9-10) faced just one more than the minimum through the remainder of his outing. He gave up three hits, walked one and hit a batter to win for only the second time in his last six starts.

"I think a really big factor was that I was able to not allow any runs that (first) inning," Kuroda said through an interpreter. "I allowed the two hits but I was able to rest my mind and start anew."

Ramirez went 3-for-4 and drove in two runs, James Loney had two hits and three RBI and Juan Pierre went 3-for-5 with three runs scored. Included in that was his first home run in 271 games as a member of the Dodgers, his previous one coming September 18, 2006 while he was with the Chicago Cubs - a span of 281 games and 1,070 at-bats.

"The guys (in the dugout) tried to give him the cold shoulder (in jest)," Torre said of Pierre's homer. "But he wouldn't stand for it. It was a good game for him."

Ramirez now has 14 RBI over his last nine games and 22 in his last 17.

"Our offense has confidence right now," Loney said. "You've got to have that confidence, and I think we have the confidence in each other that if somebody doesn't get the job done, the next guy will pick him up."

The Pirates' only offense came courtesy of Adam LaRoche's homer with two outs in the ninth. Freddy Sanchez and Nyjer Morgan each had two hits for Pittsburgh, which was coming off a three-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals.

After tip-toeing around four baserunners over the first two innings, Pirates starter Ross Ohlendorf (1-3) was finally unable to avoid damage in the third. The first four batters of the inning reached, with Ramirez doubling in Russell Martin and Pierre with a hard line drive to right-center, giving Los Angeles a 2-0 lead.

Moments later, Pirates catcher Ryan Doumit's throw went into center field while Loney was attempting to steal second, allowing Ramirez to trot home from third.

That inning would be the end of Ohlendorf's third major league start. He allowed three runs - two earned - five hits and four walks with two strikeouts and two wild pitches.

"I usually do a good job - and pride myself on - pitching deep into games," Ohlendorf said. "Of course, when you throw that many pitches, you're not going to be able to do so. It's definitely disappointing knowing I only went three innings."

Ohlendorf joined the Pirates as part of the July deal that sent Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte to the New York Yankees, where he pitched out of the bullpen. In three starts with the Pirates since his September 1 recall, Ohlendorf is 0-2 with a 6.96 ERA.

"He wasn't doing with the ball what he wanted to do with it, and he struggled each inning out there," Pirates manager John Russell said. "He just didn't seem to get into any kind of rhythm or get anything to go his way."

Ramirez nearly added to his RBI total in the fourth when he hit a towering fly ball to the wall in right with two men on. But the ball dropped in between the wall and right fielder Brandon Moss - Ramirez's former teammate in Boston - and neither runner scored, leaving Ramirez with a long single.

But Loney followed with a two-run single to right to make it 5-0. Pierre's homer came in the sixth and Blake DeWitt's sacrifice fly in the seventh scored Pablo Ozuna to make it 7-0.

Nomar Garciaparra had two hits and Martin scored three runs for the Dodgers.

Los Angeles closer Takashi Saito made his first appearance since June 12 after missing two months with a sprained ligament in this right elbow, striking out two in a scoreless eighth inning.

"Saito looked fine," Torre said. "He was probably throwing a little better in the bullpen, but as long as he did OK physically, I'm not worried about the other stuff. It was his first outing, and he's just getting his feet on ground again. I thought his command was pretty good."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    LA DODGERS 0 0 3 2 0 1 1 1 0 8 12 0
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 5 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: LOS - HIROKI KURODA, TAKASHI SAITO (8TH), BRAD PENNY (9TH) AND
    RUSSELL MARTIN, ANDREW ELLIS (9TH)
    PIT - ROSS OHLENDORF, MARINO SALAS (4TH), ROMULO
    SANCHEZ (7TH), D

    Sep 15 10:00 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY ADAM LAROCHE (20) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT
    IN THE 9TH OFF BRAD PENNY SCORED RYAN DOUMIT.
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 8, PITTSBURGH 2
    DUE UP FOR PITTSBURGH: B MOSS (.229, 0-FOR-3)

    Dodgers 8, Pirates 2  Bot 9, 0 OutsSep 15 10:00 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY JAMES LONEY SCORED RUSSELL MARTIN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J REPKO ON FIRST, J PIERRE ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 8
    PITTSBURGH 0 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR LA DODGERS: P OZUNA (.167, 0 HR, 1 RBI)

    Dodgers 8, Pirates 0  Top 8, 0 OutsSep 15 9:32 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JUAN PIERRE (1) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN THE
    6TH OFF MARINO SALAS.
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 6, PITTSBURGH 0
    DUE UP FOR LA DODGERS: M RAMIREZ (.397, 3-FOR-3, 2 RBI)

    Dodgers 6, Pirates 0  Top 6, 0 OutsSep 15 8:56 PM


  • NL
    AT PITTSBURGH - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY RYAN DOUMIT ALLOWED MANNY RAMIREZ TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J LONEY ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: LA DODGERS 3
    PITTSBURGH 0 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR LA DODGERS: B DEWITT (.262, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Dodgers 3, Pirates 0  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 15 8:07 PM
  • 5
    roots
    aqualung1 Added 5 roots

    Dodgers vs. PiratesApr 2 4:36 AM