• Summary: Hanley Ramirez had four hits, Miguel Cabrera and Josh Willingham homered in the fourth inning, and the Florida Marlins finally backed Sergio Mitre with enough offense for a 7-2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday night.
• Figure this: The Marlins' pitching staff has recorded the most walks in the majors (374) -- and their hitters have struck out the most times this season (736).
• Unsung hero: James Loney tied a career high with four hits for Los Angeles, which tied a season worst with its fourth straight loss.
• Quotable: "The team pretty much bailed me out all night long. I don't think I had my best stuff at all. My pitches were a little bit flatter than usual and I wasn't able to put innings away with two outs. But the guys put up runs and they played great defense. It feels good to get the 'W.' It was a battle all game long for me." -- Mitre
-- ESPN.com news services
Marlins 7, Dodgers 2
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Sergio Mitre and Derek Lowe both have been struggling to win games -- not because of their pitching, but the lack of run support they've been getting.The Marlins gave Mitre enough runs to work with Saturday night.Hanley Ramirez had four hits, Miguel Cabrera and Josh Willingham homered in the fourth inning and Florida beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-2."The team pretty much bailed me out all night long," Mitre said. "I don't think I had my best stuff at all. My pitches were a little bit flatter than usual and I wasn't able to put innings away with two outs. But the guys put up runs and they played great defense. It feels good to get the 'W.' It was a battle all game long for me."Mitre (3-4) won for the first time since May 20, allowing two runs and 11 hits over seven innings with a walk and two strikeouts. The right-hander was 0-2 over his previous seven outings, despite allowing only 16 earned runs in 41 1/3 innings."If he keeps pitching like he has been, those wins will come," Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "That kind of stuff sometimes runs in cycles a little bit."Lowe was matched up against Mitre for the second time this season. In the first meeting, Mitre gave up only three hits in eight scoreless innings and had to settle for a no-decision.Florida was averaging just 3.7 runs in Mitre's starts entering the game. He has allowed two earned runs or less in 11 of his 15 starts and has a 1.41 ERA in those games -- but only a 3-1 record to show for it."I felt it was going to turn around, and tonight it did," Mitre said. "Everything evens out, whether I put up zeros or I don't."Lowe (8-8) was charged with five runs and 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings after coming in with a tidy 2.98 ERA. The Dodgers have scored fewer than three runs in seven of Lowe's eight losses."That has to play on the mental side of it, because it's really tough to separate it," Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said. "There's not a whole lot you can do on that side, but sometimes that leaks into your thought process. That's when you try to make pitches better than they need to be."James Loney equaled a career high with four hits for Los Angeles, which tied a season worst with its fourth straight loss.Cabrera hit a solo drive and Willingham added a two-run shot to give Florida a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning. Cabrera has 18 homers and Willingham 11 -- including a game-winning, three-run shot against Lowe in the ninth inning of a 3-0 victory on May 10 at Miami. Those are Willingham's only two hits in nine career at-bats against the right-hander."The ball that Derek was really beating himself up on was the one to Willingham because it just stayed flat and came across the middle of the plate," Honeycutt said."We really haven't seen Derek quite as sharp his last few times out. I think he's battling a little bit with his mechanics -- not overthrowing, but just trying to be too fine with everything. He's got a great sinker, but sometimes he drops his arm level when he's trying to do a little too much, and it flattens out. He felt his release point wasn't the same tonight."One night after hitting two solo homers and driving in the eventual winning run with a bunt single in the 10th inning, Ramirez singled his first two times up and was thrown out on the basepaths both times. In the first, he was cut down at the plate on Cabrera's grounder to third baseman Nomar Garciaparra. In the second, Ramirez was nabbed trying to steal second by first-time All-Star Russell Martin.Pinch-hitter Todd Linden greeted Dodgers reliever D.J. Houlton with a leadoff homer in the ninth, and Cabrera ended the scoring with a sacrifice fly.
The Marlins' pitching staff has recorded the most walks in the majors (374) -- and their hitters have struck out the most times (736). "I don't even worry about that stuff -- or else I'd go crazy and start going bald," said Gonzalez, whose head is clean-shaven. ... Dodgers 3B Tony Abreu was not available to play because of abdominal pain.