<
>

Finley's HR off Big Unit part of big night

PHOENIX (AP) -- Steve Finley wasn't looking for revenge. He
visited his former Arizona teammates before the game, then buried
them at the end.

Finley hit a three-run double in the 13th inning, lifting the
Los Angeles Dodgers to a 4-1 victory on Tuesday night.

Finley also homered off Randy Johnson as he faced Arizona for
the first time since the Diamondbacks traded him on July 31.

"He could be the Cy Young Award winner," Finley said. "I
mean, when I was here there was at least five, six, seven games
that he should have won that we just didn't score any runs."

Brian Bruney (3-4) gave up a leadoff single to Alex Cora and,
one out later, walked pinch-hitter Hee Seop Choi and Cesar Izturis
to load the bases. Bruney fell behind Finley 3-0, got a strike and
then threw a fastball down the middle that Finley drove into the
left-field gap to score all the runners.

"I wish I had an excuse or a reason," Bruney said. "I'm just
not getting it done right now. It was pretty ugly tonight."

Dodgers closer Eric Gagne (5-3) pitched two scoreless innings
for the win, and Giovanni Carrara pitched a perfect 13th for his
second save.

Johnson, 0-2 in three starts since pitching into the ninth in a
2-0 shutout win over the New York Mets on Aug. 15, struck out a
season-high 15 and allowed three hits and one walk in eight
innings.

He increased his major league-leading strikeouts total to 242,
and left with 4,113 in his career -- 23 shy of tying Steve Carlton
for the most by a left-hander.

Johnson had the most strikeouts since he fanned 17 against
Milwaukee on Sept. 14, 2002. It was his fourth straight game with
at least 10 strikeouts, his 11th this year and 202nd of his career.

Only Nolan Ryan (215) has had more games with double-digit
strikeouts.

But, in what has become a team tradition, Johnson suffered from
a lack of run support. The team has scored two runs or fewer 10
times in a loss by its ace, who finished the game with a major
league-best ERA of 2.71.

But he was undone by one mistake -- a pitch to Finley in the
sixth that the former Diamondback drove 423 feet onto the concourse
between decks in right-center with two outs for his 28th homer.
Finley struck out in his first two at-bats against Johnson.

"He's obviously made a huge difference already for us in a
number of games, and I think he is going to continue to pay
dividends for us," Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said.

Alex Cintron tied it with a sacrifice fly in the eighth after
Los Angeles starter Jeff Weaver hit pinch-hitter Carlos Baerga
leading off. Tim Green, pinch-hitting for Johnson, sacrificed
pinch-runner Stephen Randolph, who reached third on Quinton
McCracken's single.

Weaver matched his season high with nine strikeouts when he
fanned Danny Bautista to end the rally. He also matched Johnson,
giving up five hits and walking none in eight innings.

"It's kind of unfortunate when you've got three outs to go and
then you nick a guy to lead off an inning and they do a good job of
manufacturing a run," Weaver said. "You know it's going to be
low-scoring against Randy, so you'd better put your best foot
forward."

Johnson got the first hit off Weaver, but until the eighth, the
right-hander never allowed more than one baserunner.

Johnson needed two strikeouts to reach 4,100 and got there in
the first inning, when he fanned the side. Finley was his 4,100th
victim.

After two perfect innings, the Big Unit walked Jose Hernandez
leading off the third, and he allowed a one-out single to Milton
Bradley in the fourth.

He wasn't available after the game, and manager Al Pedrique
summarized another game Johnson could have won.

"It's amazing what this guy has done this year," Pedrique
said. "You know, leading the league in ERA, leading baseball in
strikeouts and the record 12-12. It shouldn't be that way."

Game notes
Johnson failed to win his 100th game with the franchise in
his third try since pitching into the ninth in a 2-0 shutout win
over the New York Mets on Aug. 15. ... He has 29 career games with
at least 15 strikeouts, including 15 with that number. ... Weaver
has allowed three runs or fewer in 15 consecutive starts. ... The
crowd of 39,167 was the biggest in Phoenix since June 17, when the
New York Yankees attracted 48,252. ... Before the game, the
Diamondbacks claimed RHP Chad Durbin off waivers from Cleveland and
said he would be in the bullpen Wednesday. ... Choi got to second
on Bruney's throwing error, the team's franchise-record 108th this
season.