PHOENIX (AP) -- With another big blast, Adrian Beltre closed in
on the major league record for most home runs in a season by a
Beltre hit his 43rd homer Thursday night in the Los Angeles
Dodgers' 8-4 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. That's five shy
of Mike Schmidt's third baseman record of 48 and six below Shawn
Green's club record of 49.
"To be honest, I would not have thought I'd ever be doing
something like this now," Beltre said, "but it's happened, and
I'm happy with it. I'm enjoying every minute of it."
The victory, combined with losses by San Francisco and San
Diego, put the Dodgers 6½ games ahead of the Giants and seven up on
the Padres in the NL West.
"That was a huge at-bat in the game right there," Dodgers
manager Jim Tracy said.
Bradley, who'll leave the team briefly Friday for his
grandfather's funeral, had been hitting .191 through the first nine
games of the Dodgers' 13-game road trip.
"I was just glad to get an RBI," Bradley said. "I can't
remember the last time I got one."
"When you fail to turn double plays and don't play good
defense, it's going to come back and hurt you," Arizona manager Al
Yhency Brazoban (1-0), being groomed for the set-up role, gave
up a run in two innings -- on Hairston's eighth-inning homer -- and
got his first major league victory. Eric Gagne came in with runners
on first and second and one out in the ninth, and got two outs for
his 37th save.
Beltre, tied with Albert Pujols for most homers in the majors,
hit a 418-foot shot to right-center leading off the second. Beltre
moved into a tie for second with Duke Snyder and Gary Sheffield on
the Dodgers' list for most homers in a season.
Gil's bases-loaded single with two outs in the first put Arizona
up 2-0. Andy Green reached on a bunt single, Shea Hillenbrand
singled with two outs, then Hairston walked to load the bases for
Los Angeles tied it in the second. Beltre's homer cut the lead
to 2-1, then Shawn Green walked. Jayson Werth singled to put
runners on first and third. Jose Hernandez's run-scoring double
play tied it.
Hernandez's opposite-field homer to right leading off the fifth
put the Dodgers up 3-2. Los Angeles starter Odalis Perez retired 10
in a row before Chris Snyder's homer -- his second since coming to
the majors -- made it 3-3 in the fifth.
The Diamondbacks committed four errors to boost their
team-record total for the season to 113 -- second only to the New
York Mets' 118 in the NL.
Perez left after five innings with tightness in his left
shoulder. He allowed three runs on five hits, striking out five and
"We don't think it's anything serious, but we'll re-evaluate
him tomorrow," Tracy said.
Arizona's Casey Fossum allowed three runs on four hits over
seven innings. He struck out eight and walked one.
"He threw the ball real good," Pedrique said. "We keep
wasting these quality starts. That's either eight or nine in a
Beltre's 99 RBI are the most by a Dodgers third baseman
since Pedro Guerrero's 103 in 1983. ... Bradley will leave Friday
morning for Los Angeles. He'll rejoin the team in St. Louis on
Saturday, but won't be back in the lineup until Sunday. ... OF Josh
Kroeger became the 16th rookie to play for Arizona this season, and
the 14th to start. ... Arizona is 3-13 against Los Angeles this