“I knew at some point in time our offense was going to get going. I didn’t necessarily mean it to the tune of 16 runs,” Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said. “I just hope this is the beginning of something that’s very good. We don’t need 16, but if we get enough offense with a bullpen like I know I have down there, we can do this quite often.”
McGriff took extra batting practice before the game to try to improve his .177 average that resulted from him going 5-for-20 in his previous five games.
“Oh, believe me, I got over .200. It was a great game and I’m going to keep going,” said McGriff, who is now hitting .224. “I dug myself a little hole, so now I got a fight on my hands. I stayed back and I saw the ball well. I know I can hit, it’s just sometimes I’m ugly.”
Barry Bonds hit the 619th home run of his career for the Giants, who at 15-3, are off to their best start since having the same record in 1938.
“No matter what our record was, we wanted to win this game and sweep these guys at home,” Giants shortstop Rich Aurilia said.
Shawn Green also had four hits for the Dodgers, who scored eight runs in the seventh. They finally generated the offense that had been missing in their five defeats to the Giants this season. They had managed just four runs in losing the first two games of the three-game series.
“It really was a tight game for the first five, six innings, so it was nice to come from behind and all of a sudden have that huge inning,” Green said. “Hopefully, it will help get the bats going, but it’s nice to finally give these guys a loss because they’re playing so well.”
Nomo (2-3) gave up four runs on six hits in seven innings. The Japanese right-hander struck out seven and walked two to end his personal three-game losing skid. The Dodgers had scored just three runs in Nomo’s last three starts.
“I’m happy,” Nomo said. “I believe in this team’s ability to come back and score runs.”
Nomo did not give up a single and didn’t allow the Giants a hit after the fourth inning.
“He struggled a little bit early,” Dodgers catcher Paul Lo Duca said. “After about 70 pitches, he gets really, really tough. He could be 5-0 if we’d have swung the bats a little better in his other games.”
The Giants took a 3-0 lead in the second on four extra-base hits. Bonds hit a solo homer, his sixth of the season, to become the visiting home run leader at Dodger Stadium. He passed George Foster with his 24th homer.
“I’m not afraid to use the reserves. They can really play,” Giants manager Felipe Alou said. “We’re getting some big hits from them.”
The Dodgers cut it to 4-3 in the bottom half on McGriff’s RBI single and a two-run homer by Jolbert Cabrera. McGriff was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double.
Rookie Kurt Ainsworth (1-3) forced in the tying run on a bases-loaded walk to Brian Jordan in the fifth. McGriff cleared the bases with a three-run double to right-center field off Joe Nathan to give the Dodgers a 7-4 lead.
With one out, Aurilia committed a costly error when he bobbled a grounder by Lo Duca that could have been a double play. Instead, the Dodgers had runners on first and second, then Green singled to load the bases for Jordan.
The Dodgers stretched their lead to 10-4 in the seventh on Ron Coomer’s two-run single and Cabrera’s ground-rule double. Their other runs came on a sacrifice by Alex Cora, a bunt by Roberts, Green’s two-run double into the right field corner and Jordan’s sacrifice fly to make it 15-4. Six of theDodgers’ eight runs in the inning came off reliever Jim Brower.
Nomo laid down his first sacrifice bunt of the season in the sixth. It was the Dodgers’ 14th, which leads the major leagues. … The Dodgers’ 16 runs were a single-game season high. … The Giants went 10-2 against NL West opponents in 12 of their first 18 games. They won’t play an NL West opponent again until May 19 at Arizona. … McGriff passed Mickey Mantle for 39th place on the career RBI list, with his 1,510th in the fourth. … Eric Gagne pitchedthe ninth inning for Los Angeles. It was his first appearance since April 17.