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Gonzalez delivers big hit for Dodgers

The SportsXchange

LOS ANGELES -- Adrian Gonzalez has been carrying the hottest stick in the Los Angeles lineup. On Friday night, Gonzalez used his bat to rally the Dodgers past the Milwaukee Brewers.

Gonzalez's two-run double in the seventh inning helped the Dodgers post a 7-5 victory over the Brewers before 44,930 fans at Dodger Stadium.

Gonzalez, who hitting .363 against the Brewers with 31 RBI in 38 games, went 2 for 4 with three RBI as the Dodgers (11-11) won for the fourth time in the past five games.

Gonzalez hit a drive to deep center, which forced center fielder Carlos Gomez to race toward the wall. As he got to the warning track, the ball bounced off Gomez's wrist, scoring Justin Sellers and Nick Punto with two outs.

"When I hit it, I was like, 'I hope it's over his head,'" said Gonzalez, who is hitting .455 with runners in scoring position and .363 overall. "After a couple of steps, I realized he was playing too far in. Luckily, it went off his wrist."

"It was a tough play but you have to do it, no matter what," Gomez told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "I tried to throw my glove up there. I was doing my best on it. It's tough, but I've made a play like that before easy."

Jerry Hairston's RBI groundout in the eighth turned out to be the difference. Carl Crawford, who homered earlier in the game and drove in two runs, added an RBI in the eighth for the final Dodgers run.

Reliever Ronald Belisario (2-2) struck out three and didn't allow a hit in 1 2/3 innings. Brandon League gave up a run and two hits in a shaky outing in the ninth before retiring Ryan Braun on a groundout for his seventh save.

Mike Gonzalez (0-2) suffered the loss as the Brewers (11-10) dropped their second in a row after winning nine straight.

"It's huge to start a homestand, to start a series, to put ourselves in a position to win the series (Saturday)," Gonzalez said. "There are a lot of different ways to look at it and why it would be a big game for us today."

Milwaukee rookie Hiram Burgos worked seven innings and gave up three runs and four hits. He struck out three, walked two and hit Crawford with a pitch in the fifth. Crawford had homered off Burgos in the third.

Dodgers starter Josh Beckett went 5 1/3 innings and allowed three runs and seven hits. He struck out five and walked two.

"I felt good and had a lot of energy," Beckett said. "Guys played great behind me. Then the bats came alive there toward the end."

Gonzalez drove in Crawford after he was hit by Burgos in the fourth, lining a double down the right-field line and tying the score at 3 with two outs.

Andre Ethier put the Dodgers on the board with an RBI single to left, driving home Mark Ellis, for a 1-0 lead with two outs in the first.

In the third, Crawford, who entered the game in a 2-for-19 funk, led off by driving Burgos' 1-and-0 pitch into the right-center bleachers to make it 2-0.

"Carl's been unbelievable," Gonzalez said. "He's showing why he's a four-time All-Star and Gold Glover. He's just a dynamic player, like I've been saying all along. It's just great to see him doing what he's doing."

Braun hit a solo shot -- his seventh homer of the season -- into the seats in right on a 3-and-1 delivery from Beckett in the fourth to cut the lead in half.

In the fifth, Yuniesky Betancourt homered to left on a 0-and-1 pitch from Beckett to tie the score at 2. The Brewers took the lead when Jean Segura singled to right to score Alex Gonzalez with two outs.

"We should have won the game," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke told the Journal Sentinel. "At least we should have gone into the eighth and ninth inning with a lead and going to (John) Axford and (Jim) Henderson."

NOTES: Infielder Hanley Ramirez is scheduled to begin a rehab stint Saturday at the Dodgers' single-A franchise at Rancho Cucamonga. Ramirez has been on the disabled list since March 31 (retroactive to March 22) after suffering a broken right thumb during the final game of the World Baseball Classic. ... Dodgers second baseman Mark Ellis left the game in the fifth with a strained right quad. ... Milwaukee right-hander Kyle Lohse, who suffered a dislocated pinky on his left hand in his last start at San Diego on Monday, will make his scheduled start at Dodger Stadium on Sunday. ... Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who has been on the disabled list since April 6 with a sprained left knee, continues to progress and could return to the Brewers' lineup sometime next week. ... Braun's homer in the fourth was in his 209th as a Brewer, pushing him past Gorman Thomas for fourth place on the franchise list.
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