DENVER -- The Los Angeles Dodgers withstood a dramatic game-tying, two-run home run in the ninth by Colorado pinch-hitter Todd Helton and beat the Rockies 7-5 in 10 innings in the opener of a three-game series on Friday.
The game-winning rally came against closer Rafael Betancourt, who gave up a leadoff single to Ramon Hernandez. Carl Crawford ran for him and dashed to third on Skip Schumaker's one-out single. Luis Cruz lined a ball off Betancourt that resulted in a painful, run-scoring play. Betancourt threw out Cruz at first, but Crawford scored.
Juan Uribe followed with a run-scoring single to make it 7-5.
Dodgers' reliever Ronald Belisario got all three batters he faced in the bottom of the 10th to finish off the victory.
The Dodgers seemed to have the game in hand, as they took a 5-0 lead in fourth with ace Clayton Kershaw on the mound. Kershaw doubled home two runs in the fourth.
The Dodgers still held a 5-3 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth, but Brandon League gave up a one-out single to DJ LeMahieu, and Helton followed with a home run to tie it.
Kershaw had not done well at Coors Field, going 3-3 with a 5.91 ERA in 10 previous starts there. But Rockies starter Jon Garland was dealing with more immediate bad history; he had lost four straight starts with a 6.86 ERA in those games.
Kershaw gave way to Kenley Jansen after yielding singles to Dexter Fowler and Troy Tulowitzki to start the eighth, putting runners on first and third. Jansen hit Michael Cuddyer with a 1-2 pitch to load the bases but got Wilin Rosario to ground into a double play and Jordan Pacheco to ground out.
Garland, who pitched five innings for the fifth time in six starts, hit Luis Cruz with a pitch to open the third. He scored on a double by Uribe, and after Kershaw's sacrifice, Mark Ellis singled Uribe home. Garland issued a costly walk to Andre Ethier, giving Adrian Gonzalez a chance to bat, and he singled home a run.
Scott Van Slyke led off the fourth with a double. Uribe was intentionally walked with two out to get to Kershaw, who lined a double to center. Kerhaw had two doubles and 10 RBIs in 287 career at-bats entering the game.
Kershaw held the Rockies hitless until Fowler singled with one out in the fourth. Tulowitzki followed with an infield hit. Cuddyer singled home a run, and Rosario made it 5-2 with a broken-bat grounder to third base.
Notes: Rockies LF Carlos Gonzalez was given a planned day off. Manager Walt Weiss said, "He's been playing well, but he's been grinding for a long time, so this was a day for him." Gonzalez had started every game dating from April 29. His last complete day off was April 14 at San Diego. Gonzalez played the first game of a doubleheader April 23 against Atlanta...Rookie 3B Nolan Arenado entered the game hitting .226 and had three hits in his previous 21 at-bats. But Weiss had him in the lineup against Kershaw to have Arenado's defense with sinkerball pitcher Garland starting...The Dodgers selected the contract of RHP Peter Moylan from Triple-A Albuquerque and optioned RHP Javy Guerra there. To make room on the 40-man roster, LHP Scott Elbert (left elbow surgery) was transferred to the 60-day disabled list....Dodgers SS Hanley Ramirez (left hamstring strain) was scheduled to begin a rehab assignment Friday night with high Class A Rancho Cucamonga...Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said center field is "day-to-day" after regular CF Matt Kemp was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a mild right hamstring strain. Skip Schumaker made his third start of the season in center on Friday...The Dodgers could call up a center fielder if they decide to put C A.J. Ellis (left oblique) on the 15-day disabled list. He last played Wednesday. Ellis can catch but cannot swing a bat. He had a similar oblique strain at the start of spring training and was able to play in three days, and the Dodgers want to see if he responds again in that amount of time before making a decision to put him on the disabled list...Hernandez hit cleanup for the first time this season in Mattingly's makeshift lineup. He entered the game 9-for-30 against Garland with one homer and five RBIs but went 0-for-3 against him... Garland ended up allowing five earned runs and not two Sunday because of a scoring change in his last start at San Francisco when an error charged to 2B LeMahieu on a pop fly he was unable to catch due to the sun and wind was changed to hit for Hunter Pence.