Series: Game 1 of 4

LA Dodgers leads 1-0 (as of 7/15)

Game 1: Thursday, July 15
LA Dodgers4Final
Game 2: Friday, July 16
LA Dodgers6Final
Game 3: Saturday, July 17
LA Dodgers7Final
Game 4: Sunday, July 18
LA Dodgers10Final

Dodgers 4

(49-38, 20-21 away)

Diamondbacks 3

(31-59, 16-27 home)

    9:35 PM ET, July 15, 2004

    Chase Field, Phoenix, Arizona 

    123456789 R H E
    LA 000000040 4 7 0
    ARI 010002000 3 8 0

    W: W. Alvarez (4-3)

    L: R. Choate (1-1)

    S: E. Gagne (24)

    Green's grand slam provides all runs L.A. needs

    PHOENIX (AP) -- Once Randy Johnson was out of the game, Shawn Green and the Los Angeles Dodgers took over.

    Green hit a grand slam off Randy Choate in the eighth inning Thursday night, powering the Dodgers to a 4-3 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    "It's nice to get the big hit today," said Green, who had a single in three at-bats against Johnson. "The other guys had to load the bases to do it. It's nice to start the second half off like this. You've just got to move forward in this game."

    Once again, the Diamondbacks' bullpen wasted a superlative effort by Johnson, giving up all four runs after The Big Unit was taken out.

    Johnson, showing little wear from a scoreless inning in the All-Star Game two days earlier, struck out nine, allowed four hits and had an RBI single in seven scoreless innings.

    He increased his major league-leading strikeout total to 154 while coming up short by one of his 198th double-digit strikeout game.

    But manager Al Pedrique pulled Johnson between innings.

    "He threw 108 pitches," Pedrique said. "He pitched two days ago in the All-Star Game, he give up three hits in Houston. It was hot, and today was the same way. It was hot today, and we thought that was enough."

    Johnson said he was comfortable with the decision, but added he felt no after-effects from his 10th All-Star appearance and suggested this outing may have been his best since throwing a perfect game against the Atlanta Braves on May 18.

    "I felt probably as good tonight as I did in Atlanta," Johnson said.

    Brian Bruney got two outs while allowing hits to Cesar Izturis and Paul Lo Duca. Then Choate (1-1) walked pinch-hitter Milton Bradley, and Green followed with his seventh career grand slam, a 410-foot drive into the grandstand behind the swimming pool in right-center. It was just Green's 11th homer of the season.

    His last grand slam was Sept. 8, also in Phoenix off Stephen Randolph, another lefty.

    "It's disappointing," said Choate, who hadn't allowed a homer in 63 appearances. "A 1-2, hanging slider is just not going to get it done. It's the wrong time to make a bad pitch."

    Wilson Alvarez (4-3) pitched a scoreless seventh inning, Darren Dreifort worked the eighth and Eric Gagne struck out his four batters for his 24th save in 25 chances.

    Gagne's only blown save this season came in a 6-5 Dodgers win over Arizona in Los Angeles on July 5.

    Rookie Juan Brito, catching Johnson for the first time after preferred catcher Robby Hammock went on the disabled list, drove in two runs for the Diamondbacks with a single and sacrifice fly.

    But Arizona, which lost 19 of 23 games before the break, started the second half with a loss as the Dodgers maintained their NL West lead with their 12th victory in 15 games.

    "Randy Johnson was on his game tonight, there's no getting around that," Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said. "We had very little opportunity against him."

    Johnson protected a 1-0 lead until the Diamondbacks' two-run sixth.

    Dodgers starter Jeff Weaver issued a leadoff walk to Shea Hillenbrand to start the inning in trouble.

    Chad Tracy, the next batter, doubled off the fence in right-center to send Hillenbrand to third, and Weaver loaded the bases with one out with an intentional walk to Luis Terrero, who had hit two huge fouls into the grandstand.

    That set the stage for Brito's fly to center field, scoring Hillenbrand, and Johnson followed with a floater into right field, ending Weaver's outing.

    Roberto Alomar beat out a bunt single, reloading the bases, but Tom Martin got Steve Finley to pop up to the outfield for the last out.

    Weaver gave up six hits and three runs in 5 2-3 innings, striking out six and walking four.

    Jayson Werth tripled to lead off the second inning, and crossed the plate easily on Chin-Feng Chen's fly to center field. But third base umpire Ron Kulpa ruled that Werth left before the ball was caught, and an 8-2-5 double play erased the threat.

    Arizona took a 1-0 lead in its half when Alex Cintron doubled with two out and scored on Brito's bloop single to right.

    Game notes

    Hillenbrand kept a career-best, 14-game hitting streak alive with a single in the third. ... The Dodgers ended Arizona's first inning with a 2-6-3-4 double play when Luis Gonzalez struck out and Roberto Alomar was caught stealing. ... Choate's last homer was to Toronto's Vernon Wells on April 11, 2002, when he was with the New York Yankees.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press