With the Dodgers trailing by a run in the ninth inning, Dee Gordon three times tried to bunt his teammate to second base and three times Gordon failed, sending him dejectedly back to the dugout.
"I was frustrated with myself," Gordon said. "But I couldn't dwell on it."
So after the Dodgers tied the Chicago White Sox later in the inning, Gordon refocused on his next at-bat and lined a walk-off single in the 10th inning to drive inTony Gwynn Jr. and give the Dodgers a 2-1 interleague win.
"It feels great to come through for my teammates," Gordon said after they mobbed him on the infield dirt between second and third base. "We fight to the end."
The Dodgers' record, the best in the majors, improved to 42-25 with the Father's Dayvictory in front of an announced sellout of 53,504 at Dodger Stadium.
And with San Francisco losing to Seattle, the victory widened the Dodgers' lead over the Giants to five games in the National League West.
"Our boys fought . . . and it's just good to get this win," said Manager Don Mattingly, who watched the last few innings of the game in the video room of the Dodgers' clubhouse after being ejected in the sixth inning.
The Dodgers thought they had tied the score, 1-1, in the sixth inning when Matt Treanor tagged up from third and ran across home plate on Elian Herrera's flyout.
But after Chicago appealed, third base umpire Jerry Meals ruled that Treanor left too soon, called Treanor out and negated the Dodgers' run. A heated Mattingly argued with Meals and plate umpire Gary Darling to no avail.
"I didn't realize I was that fired up, I was just frustrated over that call," Mattingly said, adding that he also was trying to run interference for Matt Kemp, who was arguing with the umpires from the dugout.
"I really went out there just to protect Matt," Mattingly said.
Chicago took a 1-0 lead into the ninth inning after a superb effort by its starting pitcher, rookie left-hander Jose Quintana, who held the Dodgers scoreless and gave up five hits through eight innings.
Dodgers left-handed starter Chris Capuano pitched nearly as well, surrendering one run in his eight innings of work and striking out 12.
Capuano was helped by outstanding defense from right-fielder Andre Ethier. In the eighth inning, for instance, Ethier caught Brent Lillibridge's deep fly on the run and just as Ethier slammed into the right-field wall.
Chicago closer Addison Reed took over in the ninth inning and Bobby Abreu led off with a single. After Gordon failed to bunt him over, Abreu moved to third base on Herrera's single and scored on Juan Rivera's sacrifice fly.
With Dodgers reliever Ronald Belisario tossing scoreless relief in the ninth and 10th innings, the Dodgers got a break in the bottom of the 10th inning.
Gwynn hit a sinking line drive to left field against Matt Thornton and left fielder Jordan Danks tried to make a diving catch. But the ball got by him, Gwynn reached third base for a triple and scored the game winner on Gordon's hit.
Belisario (3-0) got the win and Thornton (2-5) the loss.