Series: Game 2 of 3

LA Dodgers leads 2-0 (as of 8/2)

Game 1: Tuesday, August 1
LA Dodgers10Final
Game 2: Wednesday, August 2
LA Dodgers5Final
Game 3: Thursday, August 3
LA Dodgers3Final

Dodgers 5

(52-55, 21-31 away)

Reds 3

(55-52, 27-27 home)

    7:10 PM ET, August 2, 2006

    Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati, Ohio 

    123456789 R H E
    LA 004010000 5 7 1
    CIN 000200010 3 4 1

    W: B. Penny (11-5)

    L: E. Ramirez (4-7)

    S: T. Saito (10)

    Penny's arm, bat propel Dodgers to fifth straight win

    CINCINNATI (AP) -- Brad Penny has had a rough time since he started the All-Star game for the National League. He took a big step toward turning it around on Wednesday night.

    Penny pitched six sharp innings and drove in a run to help the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Cincinnati Reds 5-3 for their fifth straight victory.

    Penny (11-5) snapped his three-game losing streak and won for the first time since July 5 against Arizona. He allowed two runs and three hits, walked two and struck out six.

    It was his first win since he allowed one run in two innings in the All-Star game.

    "I threw the ball well the last couple of times, but the ball fell in," Penny said. "It was at people tonight."

    Elias Says
    Takashi Saito
    Takashi Saito earned a perfect save for the Dodgers, retiring all four Cincinnati batters he faced and striking out the side in the ninth inning. Only one other pitcher in the major leagues recorded a save this season in which he pitched more than one inning and struck out the side in order in the ninth inning: Seattle's J.J. Putz on April 6.

    • For more Elias Says, Click here

    Ken Griffey Jr., Royce Clayton and Scott Hatteberg homered for the Reds, who have lost four straight. It's the Reds' longest losing streak since they lost a season-high six straight from July 1 through July 6.

    Cincinnati's lead in the NL wild-card race has dwindled to a half-game over the Arizona Diamondbacks, who were rained out against the Cubs at Chicago.

    "He threw hard," Griffey said of Penny. "We couldn't get anything together. We couldn't keep the train moving."

    Takashi Saito got Griffey to fly out to the warning track in left field with a runner on first to end the eighth and struck out the side in the ninth for his 10th save in 10 chances.

    The Dodgers pushed across four runs with one out in the third against Elizardo Ramirez. James Loney walked and Penny followed with the Dodgers' first hit of the game, a run-scoring double to center.

    "I think that double took a lot out of him," manager Grady Little said. "He ran out of gas in the fifth or sixth inning. He's been handling the bat well for us."

    Penny bunted the first pitch foul and fouled off the second pitch when Little put on the hit-and-run.

    "I got a little tired," Penny said. "It was hot out there. I got lucky. I swung hard in case I hit it."

    Rafael Furcal singled in Penny and moved to second on Griffey's throw home. Kenny Lofton added an RBI triple to make it 3-0, and he scored on J.D. Drew's single to right.

    The inning was the third in the last two games in which the Reds have allowed four or more runs.

    "Right now, we just need to stay away from those crooked numbers," manager Jerry Narron said. "The last two games, we got beat by three innings, really."

    Griffey led off the fourth with his 22nd homer of the season and the 558th of his career. One out later, Hatteberg added his 10th homer.

    The Dodgers chased Ramirez (4-7) in the fifth when Andre Ethier doubled in Julio Lugo to make it 5-2. Ramirez lasted 4 2/3 innings, allowing five runs and five hits with a career-high four walks. He also struck out five.

    "When the pitcher got that hit, I think it got away from (Ramirez) mentally," Narron said.

    Clayton led off the eighth with a homer off former Red Elmer Dessens. It was his first home run since June 17, 2005, for Arizona at Cleveland.

    "You're not going to win a lot of games when you only get four hits," Narron said. "We had a couple of chances, but we didn't capitalize."

    Game notes

    The gametime temperature was 91 degrees. ... Griffey's home run left him with 1,595 career RBI, tied with Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt for 23rd on the career RBI list. George Brett, another Hall of Famer, is 22nd with 1,596. ... Penny's double was his second of the season, and the RBI was his third. ... Furcal extended his hitting streak to nine games (16-for-37, .432), one short of matching his season high. ... Penny picked Ryan Freel off first base in the fifth, the seventh time Freel has been picked off this season. ... Ethier, who went into the game leading NL rookies in hitting, extended his hitting streak to six games (8-for-24, .333). ... The Dodgers' winning streak is their longest since they won a season-high seven straight from May 17 through May 24.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press