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DODGERS

Andre Ethier's walk-off homer wins it for Dodgers in 13th

His home run beats Pirates, 5-4, after his double sets up Matt Kemp's tying single in ninth.

September 16, 2009|JIM PELTZ | ON THE DODGERS

Casey Stengel once said the Yankees didn't pay the legendary manager "to win every day, just two out of three."

Thanks to yet another night of late-inning heroics Tuesday, the Dodgers achieved at least that much in their series against the lowly Pittsburgh Pirates.

Andre Ethier did it again, hitting a two-run home run into the left-field pavilion in the 13th inning to give the Dodgers a 5-4 win over the Pirates -- his sixth walk-off hit this season, tops in the major leagues, four of which have been home runs.

It was the 37th time this year that the Dodgers mounted a come-from-behind win.

Matt Kemp got the Dodgers into extra innings with a two-out single in the ninth inning that scored Ethier, who had doubled, to tie the score, 3-3.

For The Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday, September 17, 2009 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 4 National Desk 1 inches; 29 words Type of Material: Correction
Dodgers: In Wednesday's Sports section, the Dodgers game story said Andre Ethier's home run in the 13th inning went into the left-field pavilion. It went into the right-field pavilion.

The Pirates had taken a 4-3 lead in the top of the 13th on Ryan Doumit's run-scoring single off Ronald Belisario. The go-ahead run was unearned because of a throwing error by third baseman Casey Blake on Andrew McCutchen's routine grounder to lead off the inning.

The Dodgers were further helped by the San Francisco Giants for the second consecutive night. The Giants again beat the Colorado Rockies to drop the second-place Rockies five games behind the Dodgers in the NL West with 16 games left in the regular season.

After defeating the Pirates in the opener of their three-game series -- Pittsburgh's 15th loss in its last 17 games -- the Dodgers and starter Randy Wolf ran up against a strong outing by Pittsburgh starting pitcher Zach Duke.

Duke, a 26-year-old All-Star left-hander, had been 1-3 lifetime against the Dodgers with a 7.53 earned-run average.

No matter. Duke held the Dodgers to four hits through 7 1/3 innings. He also retired the first 10 batters until Russell Martin doubled in the fourth inning, and Duke helped himself with a run batted in.

It wasn't until the fifth inning -- with Pittsburgh holding a 3-0 lead -- that the Dodgers finally got off the floor as Kemp doubled and then scored when Blake hit a triple down the right-field line.

Mark Loretta, who started at first base for a resting James Loney, flied out deep to left field and Blake tagged up and scored to cut the Pirates' lead to 3-2.

Loretta tried to start another rally in the eighth inning with a leadoff single. After Jason Repko replaced Loretta as a pinch-runner, and Orlando Hudson sacrificed, Pittsburgh reliever Jesse Chavez replaced Duke. Loney came off the bench as a pinch-hitter and grounded out, with Repko reaching third. But Repko was left stranded when Rafael Furcal flied out.

Not so in the ninth inning, when Kemp delivered his single off another Pirates' reliever, Matt Capps, and Ethier scored the tying run.

The Dodgers had a chance in the 12th when Juan Pierre tripled with one out. But Hudson and Loney couldn't get him in.

Wolf -- making his team-leading 31st start and his first after missing a start because of a hyper-extended left elbow -- pitched relatively well in front of 52,562, giving up three runs on five hits in seven innings.

He sailed through the first inning, but he was roughed up in the second inning by the bottom half of the Pirates' lineup.

After Lastings Milledge walked, Steve Pearce -- batting .225 -- lined Wolf's first pitch into the left-field pavilion to give Pittsburgh a 2-0 lead.

Ronny Cedeno followed with a double off the right-field wall and, after Luis Cruz grounded out and moved Cedeno to third base, Duke -- a relatively good-hitting pitcher who entered the game batting .224 -- singled to center, scoring Cedeno.

--

james.peltz@latimes.com

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