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Win over rival Dodgers puts Giants 1 1/2 up

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- With contempt and colorful language,
Michael Tucker and Jeff Weaver blamed each other for the collision
that led to a bases-clearing scuffle.

Jerome Williams simply blamed this classic rivalry.

Ray Durham hit a bases-loaded triple and Williams pitched six
strong innings in the San Francisco Giants' fifth straight victory,
3-2 over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

The Giants increased their NL West lead to 1½ games with their
third straight win over their longtime antagonists. San Francisco
has claimed the NL's second-best record largely on the strength of
14 wins in the last 15 home games.

Williams (7-5) mostly stayed out of trouble in his third victory
in four starts, yielding six hits and two walks over six innings.
He barely outpitched Weaver (5-8), who allowed just five hits in
six innings while retiring 10 of his last 11 hitters.

Williams is in just his second year with the Giants, but the
uncommon tension and drama of this series already seems normal --
even when it nearly leads to a fight in a one-run game when two
players seem determined to run over each other at first base.

"That's the name of the rivalry, right there," Williams said.
"That's what it's about. ... These two teams don't hold anything
back."

Both benches cleared in the fifth inning when Weaver and Tucker
collided while Weaver applied a tag in front of the bag. Weaver
charged toward Tucker, who poked his finger in Weaver's face -- but
no punches were thrown, and there were no ejections.

Weaver, who left with nothing to show for an impressive outing,
thought Tucker was too aggressive.

"He just tried to run me over at first base, and that's what
happens," Weaver said. "He was out by 20 feet. There was no
reason for him to go in like that [with arms raised], and then back
up 20 feet after it. ... I'm sure he doesn't like me. He wasn't
doing much else, so I guess his job was to do something to get me
out of my focus."

Tucker saw it differently.

"If you're going full speed down the line and somebody's in
front of you, you've got to brace yourself," he said. "If he
doesn't like it, he doesn't like it. We're not trying to get hurt
out there."

The Giants got their runs in the second inning on a
bases-clearing triple by Durham, who has missed half of the season
with several injuries and a minor-league stint. Durham then stood
on the base and applauded his sixth hit in 11 at-bats against the
Dodgers during the series.

"By going down to [Triple-A] Fresno, I got some games in," he
said. "I got into my groove, swung the bat well and played some
defense. I feel I'm better prepared now to go all-out. I really
don't know how to hold back, and so far the legs are holding up
fine."

The rally began when Weaver hit A.J. Pierzynski on the elbow
with a two-strike pitch -- but Weaver also was incensed by the San
Francisco catcher's strategy at the plate.

"I don't know how many times that guy takes it off that elbow
pad," Weaver said. "There's no incentive for him to get out of
the way. He's probably done it four or five times in his career
when I've faced him. That's all he's trying to do, is step into
it."

Wayne Franklin, Felix Rodriguez and Scott Eyre combined for two
scoreless innings of relief, and Matt Herges finished for his 19th
save in 24 chances.

Adrian Beltre had four hits for the Dodgers, who took their
fourth loss in five games. Los Angeles, which had a 2½-game
division lead Friday, finishes this disappointing four-game
series in San Francisco on Thursday.

The Dodgers scored two runs in the first inning on Dave Roberts'
leadoff triple and RBI singles by Cesar Izturis and Beltre. But Los
Angeles got just one runner to third base in the final eight
innings.

Deivi Cruz's unlikely streak of eight consecutive hits was
broken up in the fourth inning. Cruz, a backup shortstop who went a
career-best 5-for-5 Tuesday night, had the Giants' longest streak
of consecutive hits since Livan Hernandez also got eight straight
in 2001.

Game notes
Barry Bonds went 0-for-2 with two walks -- his 100th and
101st of the season. He has been walked at least 100 times in 12
seasons, one short of Babe Ruth's major league record of 13. ...
Dodgers CF Milton Bradley was a last-minute scratch with stiffness
in his right shoulder. He hit .387 in his last 10 games. ... After
the game, the Giants activated RHP Brett Tomko and sent reliever
David Aardsma back to Fresno.