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Wade has another strong outing

September 15, 2008|Dylan Hernandez | Times Staff Writer

DENVER -- With the Dodgers and Colorado Rockies tied in the eighth inning Sunday, Cory Wade was handed the ball.

He tossed two scoreless innings.

With the Dodgers holding onto a two-run lead in the seventh inning Friday, Wade was handed the ball.

He got the final out of the inning, then put up another zero.

Wade, who said his goal this season was to be called up in September and maybe pitch in a few games, has arguably become the Dodgers' most dependable middle reliever. The right-hander, who was called up April 24, lowered his earned-run average to 2.25, retiring the six batters he faced Sunday.

He has pitched in 11 1/3 innings since being activated from the disabled list Aug. 28 and has given up only one run, and that was in his first game back.

"I've done a lot this year," Wade said.

Off the field too.

Wade's then-fiancee, Mikaela, gave birth to their child in February. He and Mikaela got married over the All-Star break. And because of the unexpected major league salary he's receiving, Wade was able to buy a house in Utah.

Pierre not pouting

With Andre Ethier home in Arizona for the birth of his first child, Juan Pierre started on consecutive days, something he hadn't done since he was in the lineup on Aug. 2-3 in Arizona.

Pierre could be headed back to the bench today, as Ethier told traveling secretary Scott Akasaki that he probably would rejoin the team in Pittsburgh. Ethier is expected back no later than Tuesday.

Pierre, who started the season with a streak of 443 consecutive games, isn't complaining about his decreased role.

"With the way the guys are playing, I have no beef," he said.

Of his new primary role as a pinch-hitter, Pierre said, "I'm just battling through it. It's something I'm not accustomed to. . . . I don't think I'm as sharp as I'd be if I had 500 or so at-bats right now."

Pierre, who was one for four Sunday, is hitting .269 in 349 at-bats. He had 668 at-bats last season and had 600 or more at-bats in six of his previous seasons. The only time he didn't meet that standard was in 2002, when he had 592 playing for the Rockies.

Pierre said he was concerned about his legs, adding that he now runs more before games.

Manny's music

Manager Joe Torre said he doesn't care for Lil Wayne, Tego Calderon or whoever else's music comes blasting out Manny Ramirez's iPod that is hooked up to the clubhouse speakers.

And even though Torre told the team in spring training that music would be outlawed before games, he said he doesn't mind that it has been played almost every day for the last two weeks.

"If one person has a problem with it, he has to stop it," Torre said. "My sense is that this time of year, if things are going fine, people put up with it. Nobody's dissenting right now."

Short hops

Right fielder Matt Kemp didn't strike out Sunday, leaving him five strikeouts shy of the Dodgers' all-time record of 149 set by Billy Grabarkewitz in 1970. . . . Shortstop Angel Berroa had two singles for his third consecutive multi-hit game.


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