With Monday’s 8-7 win on Milton Bradley’s single in the ninth, the Dodgers built a three-game lead over idle San Francisco with six to play. Los Angeles has a magic number of four, and concludes the season with three games at home against San Francisco.
The Dodgers won in their last at-bat for the 23rd time this season.
“We’ve won games like this all season long,” manager Jim Tracy said. “If you’re going to do things like that you have to have step-up, clutch performances.”
Adrian Beltre hit a grand slam to help Los Angeles. Beltre, who leads the majors with 48 home runs, matched Mike Schmidt’s record for homers by a third baseman, set in 1980 with Philadelphia.
”(Beltre) has never been a guy who could really carry a team on his back or change the complexion of a game until this year,” Colorado’s Shawn Estes said. “He’s one of those guys that you’re walking with first-and-third and one out, like we did tonight. In the past, if you made a good pitch, you could make him hit a ground ball or pop it up to the infield or something. But he’s locked in this year.”
With six games remaining, the Rockies need one win to avoid tying the worst record in franchise history, set during the club’s inaugural season of 1993. To avoid the second-worst record in team history, set in 1999, the Rockies must go 5-1 down the stretch.