MIAMI (AP) -- The streaky Los Angeles Dodgers have things going
in the right direction now.
The Dodgers' winning streak is their longest since April 12-20,
2005, and it comes immediately after they lost 13 of 14 following
the All-Star break.
"If I knew exactly what I did to pull this off, I would have
done it before we lost 13 of 14," manager Grady Little said.
Billingsley (3-3) gave up one run and three hits. The
21-year-old rookie has won three of his last four starts.
"I had really good command of my fastball and I got ahead of
the hitters," Billingsley said. "It was great to get those runs.
It gave me a cushion."
Josh Johnson (9-6) pitched three innings for the Marlins,
allowing five runs and eight hits. He struck out three in his
shortest outing in 17 starts this season. His ERA went from a
NL-leading 2.52 to 2.85, second behind Arizona's Brandon Webb.
"It was bad from the get-go," Johnson said. "I was battling
after the first batter, it was my location mainly, and I couldn't
get through it this time."
Andre Ethier hit a bases-loaded double in the fourth that drove
in two runs and stretched the Dodgers' lead to 7-1.
Los Angeles scored four runs in the second inning, when it sent
nine batters to the plate. After loading the bases with no outs,
Furcal hit a hard grounder just inside first base that rolled into
the right-field corner for a three-run triple. Furcal scored on
Kenny Lofton's single to make it 5-0.
Furcal finished 2-for-4 and extended his hitting streak to 12
games. Ethier was 3-for-3.
"When you're facing a good pitcher, you have to take advantage
of the scoring opportunities when you can," Furcal said. "He
didn't look like the same pitcher he has been."
Later in the second, Marlins manager Joe Girardi was ejected by
plate umpire Chris Guccione after arguing about a called ball on
"It wasn't a good game," Girardi said. "We didn't play good
defense and we didn't pitch well. You can't do that against a team
that's real hot. You can't do that against any team."
The only run allowed by Billingsley came when he walked Josh
Willingham with the bases loaded in the third.
Newly-acquired Julio Lugo scored the Dodgers' first run on J.D.
Drew's double in the first.
The Dodgers won their first series against Florida since
taking two of three from May 4-6, 2004. ... Girardi's ejection was
his second this season. He was ejected on May 19 in a 5-4 loss at
Tampa Bay. ... Catcher Paul Hoover made his Marlins debut in the
ninth. He is the 21st rookie used by the Marlins this season and
his single was his first hit in the major leagues since his last
appearance, which came for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays on Sept. 22,