LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Los Angeles Dodgers aren't just beating
teams lately, they're humiliating them.
Kenny Lofton hit a two-run triple, J.D. Drew tripled home
another run and the Dodgers extended their winning streak to a
season-high six games with an 8-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies
on Tuesday night.
Only twice in their last 16 games have the Dodgers scored fewer
than five runs. They are averaging 7.1 runs during that stretch,
and have outscored their opponents 45-9 over their last five games.
"It's nice to know that we're going to put up some runs out
there," starter Brad Penny said. "You knew Jeff Kent and Rafael
Furcal were going to come around and start hitting the ball,
because they're too good not to. Our defense is playing real good
right now. We're not making the stupid mistakes we were earlier,
and we're not making the stupid mistakes as pitchers that we were
earlier when the team wasn't hitting."
Penny (5-1) allowed five hits over five scoreless innings and
struck out five, helping the Dodgers win for the 14th time in 17
games. The right-hander threw 104 pitches and was replaced by Tim
Hamulack, who gave up a leadoff home run to Garrett Atkins in the
"It's nice to have the good numbers, but I'd like to have more
innings," Penny said. "Guys have been fouling off a lot of
pitches right now and I've been getting into deep pitch counts, but
I'm pleased with the way things are going."
Jason Jennings (2-5) was charged with six runs -- five earned --
and 11 hits in six-plus innings. The right-hander has lost his last
three starts against the Dodgers, including a 3-2 decision last
Wednesday, when he took a shutout into the seventh and gave up
"I was facing Penny in back-to-back starts, and he's been hot
all year. So I didn't really expect us to go out and score five or
six runs," Jennings said. "If we don't score we don't win. And if
I don't pitch good, we don't win. So it's a bad combination right
Jennings, the 2002 NL rookie of the year, has only one victory
in his last eight starts overall -- a shutout against Houston. He
has received no more than two runs of support in any of his last
"His record says he's 2-5, but he's pitched a lot better than
that. And that's what he needs to focus on and hold onto," manager
Clint Hurdle said. "We always talk about controlling things that
are in your control. And what he can control is how he pitches. He
can't control how many runs we're going to score. That's a trap
that young players fall into and one he's got to stay away from."
Hurdle gave Jennings every opportunity to pick up a win, letting
him pitch into the seventh. But right fielder Brad Hawpe dropped
Lofton's flyball on the warning track for a two-base error and
Nomar Garciaparra chased Jennings with an RBI double on his 113th
pitch, increasing the Dodgers' lead to 5-1.
"I don't want to have only two wins in the middle of May,"
Jennings said. "I think I've pitched well enough to have four or
five right now. I want to start contributing a little bit more than
I am right now."
Drew opened the scoring in the first with an RBI triple into the
right field corner and came home on Willy Aybar's double over
Hawpe's head. Colorado has given up 38 runs in the first inning,
more than they have in any other. Jennings has surrendered 10
first-inning runs in his 10 starts.
The Dodgers made it 4-0 in the second with Lofton's fifth triple
of the season and 103rd of his career. It came after Jennings gave
up singles to Penny and Furcal and threw a wild pitch to Lofton
that allowed both runners to advance.
Both triples by Los Angeles were on grounders between first
baseman Todd Helton and the bag, but the three-time Gold Glove
winner had no chance on either. The Dodgers already have 16
triples, just five fewer than all last season.
"This team's greatest strength is the frame of mind that
they're coming to the park with every day," manager Grady Little
said. "Recently, I've seen everyone's faces when they walk in the
door. They come to the park knowing they've got a chance to win a
game. That's a big stepping stone in any season for any ballclub.
That hasn't been the case all season, but it's starting to look
like that every day."
Jennings is 1-5 with a 3.63 ERA in eight career starts at
Dodger Stadium, and has lost his last five decisions here. ...
Garciaparra, a five-time All-Star shortstop who was converted into
a first baseman during spring training, has handled 279 total
chances flawlessly through his first 28 games at that position. He
is the only 1B in the NL without a miscue and at least 100 total