PHOENIX -- Justin Upton earned a break from the fans' jeering Friday night.
He broke out of a 3-for-19 slump with a key two-run triple, and the Arizona Diamondbacks rallied to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-3 and snap a six-game losing streak."It's always nice to get a big hit for your team and to get a good reaction," said Upton, who finished 2-for-4 with a run scored.Upton, hitting .267 with a pedestrian seven home runs, has been the target of the fans' wrath at Chase Field for the past month. After an 0-for-5 night Wednesday against San Diego, Upton told reporters: "To be honest with you, I don't care anything what the fans think of me.
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"My teammates, my coaches, they know I come here and I bust it every single day. I try to do everything I can to help this team. My teammates have my back, and whatever the fans want to think, they can think."Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said Friday that the fan reaction has been unwarranted."The fans shouldn't be booing the kid -- period," Gibson said. "He's been playing hard, and I can't say enough about him. He's been working on all aspects of his game; he's just not getting the results at the plate. He's had a good attitude about it."Josh Collmenter scattered six hits over six innings for the Diamondbacks, who moved within three games of .500 and six games of first-place Los Angeles in the National League West. Collmenter (1-2) struck out six and walked two."It's good to have a check in the win column, not just for me but also for the team," said Collmenter, who threw a season-high 111 pitches.J.J. Putz pitched the ninth for his 15th save.Adam Kennedy hit his first home run in nearly a year for the Dodgers, who had won three straight.What had been a strong outing for Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw (6-5) unraveled in a span of six batters.Kershaw had allowed one hit and retired 13 straight batters when he walked Henry Blanco to lead off the sixth. The defending NL Cy Young winner struck out pinch hitter Lyle Overbay, but then Willie Bloomquist and Aaron Hill singled, and Upton lined a two-run triple just inside the left-field line and into the corner to give the Diamondbacks a 3-2 lead.Jason Kubel followed with a double off the base of the left-center field wall, scoring Upton to make it 4-2 and end Kershaw's night. Kubel came home on a two-out wild pitch by Jamey Wright for a 5-2 lead."Maybe he gets a little fatigued there, but his pitch count really wasn't that high," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He walks Blanco, which kind of starts it, and then he couldn't really stop the bleeding."Kershaw allowed five runs on five hits over 5 1/3 innings, his shortest outing since a three-inning stint Opening Day. He struck out seven and walked two."I didn't pitch very well," Kershaw said. "The results were OK, but I was behind a lot of hitters. I was getting some guys to chase sometimes and making one good pitch or something to get a guy out, but for the most part I was behind on every count and fighting uphill the whole day."The Dodgers pulled within 5-3 on a walk and three singles against Bryan Shaw. But Mike Zagurski struck out pinch hitter Jerry Hairston with the bases loaded and induced James Loney to fly out to Kubel in left. Kubel then threw out Mark Ellis easily at home to end the rally."In that situation, when you're running out of time, you've got to go," Kubel said. "You've got to have a good throw and a good tag to make it happen."Los Angeles threatened again in the eighth, putting runners on second and third against David Hernandez with nobody out before Hernandez recovered to retire the side, striking out Elian Herrera and Ellis along the way."That was one of the big things in a lot of the innings, just limiting the damage," Collmenter said.Tony Gwynn Jr. reached on an error and scored on Bobby Abreu's double to put the Dodgers ahead 1-0 in the third. Kennedy led off the fourth with his solo shot to make it 2-0.
Kubel has 11 outfield assists, the third most in club history, and one shy of the team single-season record held by Eric Byrnes and Gerardo Parra. ... Abreu ended the Diamondbacks' sixth with a sliding catch of a quickly dropping line drive by Blanco. ... Upton's triple was his first since Aug. 5. ... Kennedy's home run was his first since July 20 at Toronto, a span of 90 games. ... Kershaw's five runs allowed were the most he'd allowed in 12 career starts against Arizona. ... Collmenter has allowed three runs -- two earned -- over 12 innings in his past two starts and three earned runs in four starts since returning from a nearly two-month banishment to the bullpen. ... RHP Trevor Cahill will make his second start against the Dodgers this season, facing RHP Chad Billingsley. Cahill is 0-2 with a 4.91 ERA in his past two starts and has allowed five home runs in his past three outings. Billingsley has lost his past four starts but is 10-8 with a 3.74 ERA in 26 games -- 24 starts -- against the Diamondbacks.
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PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 06: James Loney #7 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks off the field after batting practice...
24,891 (51.2% full) - % is based on regular season capacity
Home Plate - Alfonso Marquez, First Base - Brian O'Nora, Second Base - Jordan Baker, Third Base - Chad Fairchild
From Elias: Justin Upton hit a 2-run triple in the 6th to give the Diamondbacks a 3-2 lead against the Dodgers.
Before that at-bat, Upton was 1-for-22 in his career against Clayton Kershaw. That .045 batting average was the lowest career mark for any player with 10 or more plate appearances against Kershaw. Arizona teammate Stephen Drew is 1-for-17 (.059) off Kershaw, which is now tied for the lowest average in that group.