Giants’ Correia beats Dodgers 7-6, drives in 2
LOS ANGELES (AP)—Kevin Correia got his first victory in about 3 1/2 months. It didn’t come easy, even though he was staked to a seven-run lead.
The San Francisco Giants needed five relievers to close out Monday night’s 7-6 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Brian Wilson worked a perfect ninth for his NL-leading 28th save in 30 chances, helping end the Giants’ three-game losing streak.
“We made a couple of mistakes to let them back in the game and they battled back, but we settled down,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “You can’t say enough about what our bullpen did tonight after the momentum had swung. They really stepped up and did what we needed.”
Jose Castillo hit a pair of RBI singles and Fred Lewis also drove in two runs for the Giants, who were held hitless by the Dodgers’ bullpen over the final 5 1-3 innings after RBI singles by Castillo and Randy Winn capped a five-run fourth and chased Los Angeles starter Hiroki Kuroda.
Correia (2-5) won for the first time since April 10 against St. Louis after going 0-4 with a 6.65 ERA over his previous nine starts. The right-hander allowed six runs—four earned—and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings. He struck out five, walked none and hit a two-out, two-run single during the Giants’ big fourth inning.
Slumping Dodgers center fielder Andruw Jones did not start for the second straight game, even though he was 4-for-9 lifetime against Correia with three home runs. He hit for reliever Brian Falkenborg with runners at the corners in the sixth and delivered an RBI single against Sergio Romo to cut the Giants’ lead to 7-6.
Manager Joe Torre has given Jones every opportunity to make good in the first year of a $36.2 million, two-year contract, but he can’t afford to wait any longer for him to come around.
“We talked, and Joe just told me what he’s going to go with. There’s nothing I can do about it except get the job done when I get the opportunity,” Jones said. “The situation came up, and it felt good just to go out there and get a key hit.”
Jones, a five-time All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove winner, is 10-for-56 with six RBIs in his last 20 games after missing 38 because of an injured right knee that required arthroscopic surgery.
“I think there was a sense of urgency all the time with him, based on his own expectations of himself,” Torre said. “He’s a very proud individual and he certainly knows he’s a whole lot better player than he’s shown us. I know it hurts him, but there’s no easy way around it. We’re at a point in the season now where we’re trying to win a pennant.”
Newly acquired Dodgers third baseman Casey Blake was ejected by first base umpire Greg Gibson for arguing from the dugout after getting called out on a checked-swing third strike in the eighth. Torre continued the argument and picked up his second ejection with the Dodgers and first since April 24.
Kuroda (5-8) had his worst outing of the season on Japanese Community Night at Dodger Stadium. The right-hander, who has pitched two complete-game shutouts this season, surrendered seven runs and nine hits in 3 2-3 innings.
A mental lapse by Kuroda helped the Giants score five runs in the fourth, extending their lead to 7-0. With runners at the corners, one out and rookie John Bowker running with the pitch, Rich Aurilia hit a dribbler back to the mound. Kuroda looked Rowand back to third, then tried to force Bowker at second with no success.
“The guy got a late jump on the hit-and-run. And if (Kuroda) doesn’t hear the defense call `runner,’ that’s what he’s taught to do—turn around and fire,” Dodgers catcher Russell Martin said. “It’s just one of those mistakes that you wish you could have done something about. I know that I yelled `one-one-one’ because the play was right in front of me. But when the crowd’s screaming, it’s kind of hard to communicate out there. It kind of hurt us, but it’s nothing you can really prevent.”
Omar Vizquel struck out, but Correia slapped a 1-2 pitch to center for a two-run single. Lewis beat out a slow bouncer to shortstop for a hit as Aurilia scored, and the Giants capped the rally with the run-scoring hits by Castillo and Winn.
The Dodgers, coming off a three-game sweep of the lowly Washington Nationals, got a five-spot of their own in the fifth.
The rally began with a throwing error by second baseman Castillo on James Loney’s grounder. Andre Ethier and Angel Berroa hit RBI singles and pinch-hitter Mark Sweeney doubled home two more. Sweeney scored when Gold Glove catcher Bengie Molina threw past to first base on a bunt single by Juan Pierre.
The results of an MRI taken on Dodgers SS Nomar Garciaparra’s left knee revealed a Grade 1 sprain of the medial collateral ligament. He was injured making a tag play against Washington’s Lastings Milledge on Sunday. … RHP Brad Penny, who hasn’t pitched for the Dodgers since June 14 because of shoulder tendinitis and bursitis, threw a bullpen session Monday and will have a rehab outing of 45 pitches on Wednesday with Class A Inland Empire. He’ll get one more minor league rehab start with Triple-A Las Vegas, after which he hopes to return to the rotation on Aug. 9 at San Francisco. … Correia retired his first 10 batters before Matt Kemp reached on an infield single up the middle to extend his career-best hitting streak to 15 games. … Among the crowd of 37,483 was actress Nicollette Sheridan from ABC’s “Desperate Housewives.”