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Another no-decision for Randy Wolf

Left-hander pitches well enough to get the win, before bullpen lets lead get away.

July 05, 2009|Dylan Hernandez

SAN DIEGO — The no-decisions continue to pile up for Randy Wolf, who held the Padres to one run over six innings Saturday but extended his winless streak to seven starts.

Wolf, who struck out eight and lowered his earned-run average to 3.49, has 12 no-decisions in 18 starts, including four in his last six. The major league record for no-decisions belongs to Bert Blyleven, who had 20 for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1979.

"There's always one on every team like that," catcher Russell Martin said. "Last year, it was Derek Lowe. This year, it's Wolfy."

Wolf was in line to earn the win until Ronald Belisario was tagged for three runs in the seventh inning to turn the Dodgers' 2-1 lead into a 4-2 deficit.

The only run charged to Wolf came in the third inning, which he started by giving up a double to pitcher Josh Geer. Geer moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Everth Cabrera and scored on a single by David Eckstein.

The Padres loaded the bases that inning, but Wolf got out of the pinch by striking out Chase Headley.


Manny's impact on Andre

By Manager Joe Torre's estimation, the player most affected by Manny Ramirez's absence was Andre Ethier.

"I just think Ethier put more on himself than he should have when Manny left," Torre said. With Ramirez back, the manager continued, "I'm guessing it'll work in reverse."

Ethier hit nine of his 15 home runs and drove in 25 of his 52 runs over the course of Ramirez's suspension.

But he hit only .222, dropping his average from .317 to .257.

Ethier acknowledged that the added responsibility he shouldered while Ramirez was out contributed to the lower average.

"Sometimes it happens," he said. "This is the first time I'm in a role where I'm hitting in the middle of the lineup and being asked to drive in guys and do stuff. If you want to improve my average, put me somewhere else because I'm looking to drive runs in."

Ramirez's return could only help, Ethier said.

"It can't hurt if he's doing what he's capable of doing," he said. "It forces the issue. They have to come after you a little bit more."

In the two games since Ramirez returned from his suspension, Ethier was one for nine.


Broxton throws bullets

Jonathan Broxton uncorked his fastest pitch of the season Friday night.

ESPN reported that on his way to earning his 20th save in the Dodgers' series opener against the Padres, Broxton struck out Kevin Kouzmanoff with a fastball that was clocked at 102.6 mph.

"He was throwing gas," Martin said.

The pitch was the fastest in the majors this season that wasn't thrown by Detroit Tigers reliever Joel Zumaya.

Martin said that when he noticed there was something different about Broxton while he was warming up.

"You could tell he was throwing harder than usual," Martin said. "He brought his A-game."


Hudson gets a break

Orlando Hudson, who entered the game hitless in his last 20 at-bats, was out of the starting lineup for only the third time this season.

Torre said he wanted to rest Hudson who "looked like he was forcing it" in an 0-for-5 Friday night that included three strikeouts. Hudson could also sit again today, which would give him three consecutive days off, counting the Dodgers' travel day to New York on Monday.

"He feels like he's letting people down," Torre said. "I told him, 'The way you play, you never need to apologize for anything.' "

Hudson struck out as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning.





When: 1.

Where: Petco Park.

On the air: TV: Ch. 9. Radio: 790, 930.

Pitchers: Chad Billingsley vs. Josh Banks.

Update: Billingsley held Colorado to three runs over 7 2/3 innings in his last star but took the loss. Today he goes for his 10th win, facing a Padres club against which he is 3-0 with a 3.38 earned-run average this season and 8-3 over his career. Banks, who was called up from triple-A Portland last month, will be making his second start of the season. His first was June 30, when he limited Houston to three runs and five hits over seven innings to earn the win.

-- Dylan Hernandez

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