Series: Game 1 of 4

LA Dodgers leads 1-0 (as of 7/26)

Game 1: Monday, July 26
LA Dodgers9Final
Game 2: Tuesday, July 27
LA Dodgers2Final
Game 3: Wednesday, July 28
LA Dodgers4Final
Game 4: Thursday, July 29
LA Dodgers3Final

Dodgers 9

(58-40, 26-21 away)

Rockies 7

(42-57, 22-26 home)

    9:05 PM ET, July 26, 2004

    Coors Field, Denver, Colorado 

    123456789 R H E
    LA 030040200 9 12 0
    COL 021121000 7 11 0

    W: D. Sanchez (2-1)

    L: A. Simpson (0-1)

    S: E. Gagne (29)

    L.A.'s win at Colorado its ninth straight away

    DENVER (AP) -- Milton Bradley's floater was the difference on another hard-hitting night at Coors Field.

    Bradley broke out of a slump with three hits and three RBI, including a two-run bloop single in Los Angeles' four-run fifth inning, helping the Dodgers beat the Colorado Rockies 9-7 Monday night for their ninth straight road victory.

    Los Angeles managed just two hits against San Diego's Adam Eaton on Sunday, and Bradley entered Monday's game in a 2-for-16 slide. The popup in the fifth that somehow found a hole between left fielder Jeromy Burnitz and Royce Clayton proved to be just what Bradley and the Dodgers needed.

    Bradley finished 3-for-4, Adrian Beltre hit his 28th home run and Jose Hernandez also connected for the NL West-leading Dodgers, who had 12 hits in winning for the 18th time in 21 games overall.

    "A key to the game was a break that we got on the ball that Milton hit that fell for two additional runs," Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said. "That turned out to be a big point in the game."

    Jeromy Burnitz, Todd Helton and Vinny Castilla homered for Colorado, which opened a 13-game homestand with a loss despite rallying from a pair of three-run deficits.

    Los Angeles went up 7-4 in the fifth inning, but the Rockies got two in the bottom half and tied it in the sixth on Castilla's 22nd homer, a 447-foot solo shot to center off Duaner Sanchez (2-1).

    The Dodgers went ahead to stay in the seventh, scoring two runs off Allan Simpson (0-1) on RBI doubles by Paul Lo Duca and Bradley.

    "We thought we were going to be able to come back and win the ballgame. We just weren't able to do it," Rockies manger Clint Hurdle said.

    Eric Gagne got three outs for his 29th save in 30 chances, but it wasn't easy.

    He hit Preston Wilson with a pitch, then walked Burnitz with one out. Charles Johnson followed with a long fly to left that brought the crowd to its feet, but it fell harmlessly into Jayson Werth's glove on the warning track. Matt Holliday grounded out to end it.

    "Every time that ball is hit in the air here, it's a little nerve wracking," Gagne said. "I knew he didn't get all of it, but you never know here."

    Neither team got much from its starter.

    Shawn Estes struggled from the outset, giving up seven runs and eight hits in five innings after Colorado's starters allowed eight runs in 33 1/3 innings the previous five games.

    "That Bradley hit didn't help. I made a pitch and that kind of stuff happens sometimes," Estes said. "It comes down to that they are a very good baseball team and you can't make mistakes, regardless of that hit."

    Los Angeles' Kazuhisa Ishii is tied for second in the NL with 11 wins, but he continued to have trouble with the Rockies. The left-hander lasted just four innings, giving up six runs and eight hits after Colorado knocked him around for six runs in 3 1/3 innings in a 6-5 victory Wednesday.

    "I tried not to think about it and pitch my regular game today," Ishii said through a translator of pitching at Coors Field. "They did get all those hits, so I don't think I stayed in the plan."

    At least the two pitchers helped at the plate, each going 2-for-2 with a run. Ishii also drove in his fourth run of the season with a single in the second inning after Beltre led off with a homer to left and Shawn Green had an RBI double.

    Burnitz answered in the bottom half with his 24th homer, a two-run shot midway up the second deck in right that cut the lead to 3-2.

    Helton tied it in the third inning with his 20th homer, a solo shot off the base of the second deck in left, then Clayton put the Rockies up 4-3 in the fourth with an RBI single.

    The lead didn't last long.

    Hernandez led off the fifth inning with his seventh homer, and Beltre made it 5-4 on a groundout with the bases loaded and one out.

    Estes appeared to be out of the jam when Bradley popped up to shallow left, but the ball dropped between Burnitz and Clayton for a two-run single.

    "Shawn made a good pitch to Bradley, a fly ball that somehow finds grass," Hurdle said. "Two runs score on that play, that hurt."

    Colorado answered with two runs in the bottom half on Preston Wilson's RBI single and a sacrifice fly by Charles Johnson.

    Castilla tied it in the sixth with his fifth homer in six games, but the Rockies couldn't get anything else off the best bullpen in baseball.

    Darren Dreifort and Guillermo Mota each pitched a scoreless inning, then Gagne closed it out for a group of relievers who have allowed 15 runs the past 81 innings.

    "We got the lead, we kept the lead and we got to the seventh inning," Tracy said. "We're pretty good from the seventh inning on when we have the lead."

    Game notes

    Rockies RF Larry Walker took a hit away from Beltre in the third inning with a sliding catch near the line. ... Werth ended an 0-for-18 slump with a single in the fifth inning. He finished 2-for-5. ... Estes leads the majors in runs scored by a pitcher with eight.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press