Dodgers 8, Rockies 1

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DENVER (AP)—Mark Hendrickson did just fine as Jason Schmidt’s fill-in, not that it assures him of a spot in the Los Angeles Dodgers’ rotation.

Hendrickson got his first win as a starter since August, allowing one run in 5 2-3 innings, and the Dodgers defeated the Colorado Rockies 8-1 on Thursday.

“Mark has pitched well for us since Day 1 of spring training,” Dodgers manager Grady Little said. “We’re proud for what he’s done for himself and in turn what he’s done for this ballclub.”

Still, Little wouldn’t commit to giving Hendrickson a start the next time the turn comes up.

“We’ll see because it depends on how many times I use him in the bullpen,” Little said. “The truth is right now he has to be available out of the pen.”

Hendrickson didn’t appeared bothered by Little’s lack of a decision.

“It doesn’t matter the role,” the pitcher said. “I just try to make pitches and help the team.”

Schmidt, who agreed to a $47 million, three-year contract with the Dodgers during the offseason, went on the disabled list Tuesday with shoulder inflammation.

Hendrickson, who had pitched 11 innings in three relief appearances, made his first start since Sept. 5 at Milwaukee. He scattered five hits, struck out two and walked one, throwing 75 pitches in his first win as a starter since Aug. 6 at Florida.

“That’s the best I’ve seen the young man pitch,” Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. “He had the command of his fastball on both sides of the plate and he had a very effective changeup.”

Chin-Hui Tsao, Joe Beimel and Jonathan Broxton finished with hitless relief as the Dodgers won for the fourth time in five games. Jeff Kent had three hits, two RBIs and two runs.

Aaron Cook (0-1) extended his winless streak to nine starts since Aug. 27, giving up five runs—three earned—six hits and four walks in six innings. He has lost four straight decisions to the Dodgers since beating them on Aug. 25, 2005.

Russell Martinez’s sacrifice fly and Hendrickson’s high-hopping RBI grounder past Cook put Los Angeles ahead in the second. Cook walked Andre Ethier with the bases loaded in the third, and first baseman Jeff Baker booted Wilson Betemit’s bouncer for a two-run error that made it 5-0.

“It wasn’t like they beat me with their bats,” Cook said. “I have to make better quality pitches to make sure no damage gets done.”

Garrett Atkins chased Hendrickson with an RBI single in the sixth.

“I told him I was spent,” Hendrickson said. “I was pitching on fumes when Grady came to take me out.”

Juan Pierre had an RBI single in the ninth off Matt Herges and Kent followed with a two-run double.

Notes

: OF Matt Kemp (right shoulder) was given the day off in his rehab assignment at Triple-A Las Vegas but is slated to play a full game on Friday. … Kent stumbled over the first base bag running out an infield hit in the fifth inning. … 1B Todd Helton was given a scheduled day off. … The Rockies placed RHP Rodrigo Lopez on the 15-day DL with tightness in his right elbow and purchased the contract of Herges from Triple-A Colorado Springs.

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