Dodgers 3, Tigers 1

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DETROIT (AP)—Kevin Brown is the only pitcher with nine wins in the National League, is the only starter in baseball with a 2.00 ERA and he still thinks he can get better.

Brown gave up one run on five hits while striking out seven as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Detroit Tigers 3-1 Wednesday night.

“The results are good, but I’m not satisfied with how I pitched,” said Brown, who walked three over his seven innings. “There’s room for improvement.

“But It’s hard to sneeze at a win. I’m not going to argue with it.”

Fred McGriff’s go-ahead single moved him into a tie with Joe DiMaggio for 36th place on the all-time RBI list with his 1,537th. McGriff knocked in Brian Jordan in the fourth inning to give the Dodgers a 2-1 lead.

That was all the cushion Brown (9-1) needed to break a tie with St. Louis’ Woody Williams and Colorado’s Shawn Chacon for the most wins in the NL. Seattle’s Jamie Moyer leads the majors with 10 victories.

Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said Brown—who has not lost since April 8—is constantly looking to improve.

“He’s not just saying it to you so that it sounds good,” Tracy said. “That’s the way Kevin Brown is. He wants to get better. I’m sure between now and his next start, Tuesday against the Giants, there will be something that he’ll be looking for to improve upon. That’s what makes him so special.

“His numbers, his stuff, although it’s the 11th of June, begins to resemble what you would talk about when you start speaking along the lines of a Cy Young Award winner.”

Eric Gagne pitched a perfect ninth for his 23rd save in as many opportunities. He has saved 31 straight dating back to last season, the longest streak in the majors.

Los Angeles catcher Paul Lo Duca extended his hitting streak to 19 games in the fourth inning with a single and scored on Shawn Green’s sacrifice fly. Alex Cora doubled and scored on Dave Roberts’ groundout in the fifth to put the Dodgers ahead 3-1

The two lowest-scoring teams in the major leagues combined for four runs on 10 hits one night after Los Angeles beat Detroit 3-1 in 12 innings and the teams combined for just 11 hits.

“Offensively, they struggle, but they get the job done,” Detroit manager Alan Trammell said. “In both games, they’ve come up with big base hits. That’s the sign of a veteran club. We’ve had opportunities, but we haven’t come through and that’s the sign of an inexperienced club.”

Adam Bernero (1-8) gave up three runs on four hits and three walks over 7 2-3 innings. In his 28th career start, Bernero tied his career-best with seven strikeouts.

The Dodgers have won 16 of their last 24 games and 18 of their last 27 interleague games.

Detroit lost its sixth straight to drop its major league-worst record to 16-46.

The Tigers had a chance to score in the second, and blew an opportunity to score more than one run the next inning.

The Tigers had two on with one out in the second, but Brown struck out Brandon Inge and got Omar Infante to ground out. In the third, a double steal put runners on second and third with one out, but Alex Sanchez was thrown out when he tried to score after a pitch got past Lo Duca.

Kevin Witt hit an RBI single, which scored Bobby Higginson, in the inning to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead. Brown gave up only one hit over the next fourinnings.

Notes

Detroit outfielder Dmitri Young was scratched from the lineup just before the game with a sinus infection. … Tracy will not be on the bench for Thursday night’s game in Detroit because his son, Chad, is graduating from Claremont (Calif.) High School on Thursday. Tracy will rejoin the team for Friday night’s game in Cleveland. … Dave Roberts stole his 21st base for theDodgers.

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