Series: Game 3 of 3

Cincinnati won 3-0

Game 1: Friday, May 14
LA Dodgers1
Game 2: Saturday, May 15
LA Dodgers0
Game 3: Sunday, May 16
LA Dodgers3

Reds 6

(20-17, 11-11 away)

Dodgers 3

(22-14, 11-10 home)

    4:10 PM ET, May 16, 2004

    Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, California 

    123456789 R H E
    CIN 400000020 6 12 0
    LA 000100200 3 9 0

    W: A. Harang (4-1)

    L: J. Weaver (2-5)

    S: D. Graves (17)

    Griffey provides insurance in eighth

    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Dodgers manager Jim Tracy had a tough choice: pitch to Ken Griffey Jr. with first base open and two outs or walk him and go after Adam Dunn with the bases loaded.

    Guillermo Mota pitched to Griffey, and the 11-time All-Star singled home Cincinnati's final two runs in the eighth inning. The clutch hit helped secure a 6-3 victory over Los Angeles on Sunday, giving the Reds their first three-game sweep of the season.

    "I wasn't expecting it with first base open, but sometimes you gamble," said Griffey, who hit a two-run homer Saturday night. "When it got to 2-2, I was just trying to stay in there."

    Tracy defended his difficult decision following the Dodgers' fourth straight loss.

    "If you intentionally walk Griffey, then you have to pitch in the zone to the next guy -- who the last time I checked was leading the National League in home runs. So the complexion of the at-bat changes completely," Tracy said.

    "You force Guillermo to have to throw the ball over the plate to Adam Dunn, and you run the risk of the ball being hit out of the ballpark or into the gap. We had Griffey with two strikes, and the selection of the pitch was a good one. But the location of it was not. It stayed in the middle of the plate and was down, right in the path and the sweep of Griffey's swing."

    Dunn had his first three-hit game of the season, including a two-run double in a four-run first inning against Jeff Weaver. Aaron Harang (4-1) held the Dodgers to a pair of runs and six hits in 6 2-3 innings, including a two-out homer by David Ross in the fourth.

    "We didn't score a lot of runs in this series, but anytime you get the kind of pitching we got, you're going to win a lot of ballgames," Dunn said.

    Danny Graves pitched a perfect ninth for his major league-leading 17th save in 20 attempts and 148th with the Reds, tying John Franco's franchise record.

    "I'm always confident. You have to be confident to play this game and have any kind of success," Graves said. "Obviously, things are going well right now, but it's a long year and I'm aware of that. I've learned that you can't get too high or too low."

    Graves saved all three games in the series. He has closed out all but three of Cincinnati's victories this season.

    "I don't feel pressure," Graves said. "The closer on any club is only as good as the rest of your team is. We're not a team that's going to blow people out and win 10-0. Our wins are going to come in a lot of close games. That's why I've been fortunate enough to have these opportunities."

    Joe Thurston just missed his first major league homer by inches with two outs in the seventh against Harang, settling for his first big league triple. Phil Norton relieved, and pinch-hitter Jose Hernandez drove the left-hander's second pitch to left-center for his fourth homer, trimming Cincinnati's lead to 4-3.

    Adrian Beltre, who entered the series with the second-highest batting average in the majors behind Dodgers teammate Paul Lo Duca, was 1-for-12, dropping his average from 3.77 to .345. Lo Duca also went 1-for-12, lowering his mark from .386 to .365.

    "It was a rough weekend," said Dodgers cleanup hitter Shawn Green, who failed to drive in a run in 11 at-bats against Cincinnati. "We didn't hit, we didn't pitch, we didn't do a lot of things. It's hard to win when you don't play the game right. You never want to get swept, but better now than later."

    Weaver (2-5) threw 38 pitches in the first inning, when he gave up all four runs that were charged to him -- equaling the total he allowed in his previous two starts combined. The right-hander gave up seven hits in five innings, struck out five and walked one.

    Dunn, who entered the game 4-for-26 with runners in scoring position, sliced a two-run double into the left-field corner with the bases loaded. Griffey scored on a groundout by Jacob Cruz, and Tim Hummel added an RBI single.

    Game notes

    Reds leadoff hitter Ryan Freel reached base all five times up. He hit his NL-leading fifth triple, singled, walked and was hit by a pitch twice. ... Hernandez's homer was his third in the majors as a pinch-hitter, and first since April 28, 1998, at Dodger Stadium for the Cubs. ... Weaver reached the 1,000-inning mark when he retired Juan Castro on a grounder leading off the fourth. ... Griffey was 0-for-2 against Weaver and is hitless in 10 career at-bats against him.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press