SAN FRANCISCO (AP)—Joe Torre has a feeling his team is starting to come together. The Dodgers are getting healthy, too.
Andre Ethier homered and hit a go-ahead two-run double in the sixth, Derek Lowe won for the first time in three starts and the Dodgers rallied to beat the Giants 10-7 on Friday for their fourth straight victory in their first visit of the season to San Francisco.
“It was a sloppy game. We were lucky to win. We made too many mistakes,” Torre said. “I’ll take it though. … Derek didn’t have his best day but he battled and kept us close.”
Just when it looked as if San Francisco starter Jonathan Sanchez was headed for another win, rookie reliever Osiris Matos (0-1) allowed five unearned runs in the sixth. Left fielder Fred Lewis made a costly mistake when he dropped a routine line drive by Garciaparra to start the inning. Pinch-hitter Delwyn Young hit a tying RBI single two batters later and, one out later, Ethier began a stretch of three straight doubles that scored runs.
“Just a mistake. Just an error,” Lewis said. “It cost us the game.”
“Matos was throwing the ball well. He had some bad luck,” Bochy said. “You look back and wish you’d done something a little different. Believe me, I look back.”
Los Angeles had nine extra-base hits to help Lowe’s cause—getting two doubles and two RBIs by Garciaparra in his first game since late April because of a left calf injury.
The Dodgers rallied from a 5-2 deficit in the opener of a series that’s important for both teams leading up to the All-Star break, with every club in the NL West still in contention.
“I got to turn a double play. It was nice to get that out of the way,” Garciaparra said. “I’m not trying to hold back. I want to do what I can. This is the most innings I’ve played in two months. Go out there, play shortstop. It’s not weird but I haven’t been there in a while.
“I’m seeing the game from a different angle but it felt like a familiar place. The more you keep playing, the more you learn. This division is still up for grabs.”
Lowe (6-8) went five innings for the decision, and Takashi Saito worked the ninth for his 15th save in 18 chances.
Lewis had more trouble in left in the seventh, but the ball glanced off his glove and center fielder Aaron Rowand was there to make the barehanded catch for a quirky putout scored 7-8.
“It was a tough day out there for Freddy,” Bochy said. “(On Garciaparra’s line drive) he had it right there. He just clanked it. It was a pretty routine play. You don’t see that happen. It came at an inopportune time.”
Sanchez keeps racking up strikeouts, but had little to show for seven on Friday. He didn’t help himself by walking in two runs in the third.
Rowand doubled and drove in two runs and Lewis stole home for the second time in three days. Lewis and Randy Winn pulled off a double steal for the second day in a row, and Lewis then added an RBI double in the fourth to make it 5-2.
Ethier hit a leadoff homer in the fifth, only the third longball allowed by Sanchez in his last nine starts.
Surprisingly, this is the Dodgers’ first visit to the Bay Area to face their division rival.
“That’s the unbalanced schedule,” said Torre, the Dodgers’ first-year manager. “I’m not a big fan of that but come September you’re glad you’re playing the division.”
Jones, the Dodgers’ center fielder, came back from right knee surgery, struck out four times—the 11th time in his career he’s had four or more Ks in a game.
Kemp stole his 18th base. … Friday marked the 25th anniversary of Giants’ pitching coach Dave Righetti’s no-hitter of the Red Sox for New York at Yankee Stadium. Highlights of his gem were shown on the big screen. … Giants LHP Noah Lowry, who has not pitched this season after surgery on his forearm, will travel to Arizona during the team’s upcoming road trip to begin playing catch. He is no longer having the pins-and-needles irritation in the nerves. “I’m starting to turn the corner,” Lowry said. Manager Bruce Bochy acknowledged it would be great for Lowry to get back on the mound before the end of the season to boost his spirits heading into the winter. … The game drew 40,447, the Giants’ seventh sellout.