Dodgers Fall In Opener With Rockies

A.J. Ellis has three hits in the loss for Los Angeles. For more information and Dodgers' news, please visit True Blue LA.

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Rockies 7, Dodgers 5: Postgame Notes: Broxton's Struggles, Mattingly's Experience, Etc

Here are some notes from tonight’s postgame meeting with Dodgers’ manager Joe Torre.

On tonight’s game perhaps being a microcosm of the Dodger season to date:

Where we are right now, we’ve pretty much earned this. We just haven’t played well enough to warrant being in the penant race.

On reliever Jonathan Broxton’s confidence:

It has to be low. He appears unsure of himself. He will be fine, he will get through this, and he’ll get back to being the dominant closer he was earlier this year. You talk about human beings playing this game, that’s what happens.

This is something he’s got to fight his way through. When it comes time to let the ball go, it’s that not necessarily knowing where it’s going. He’s just trying to overthrow it a lot of times.

It’s not like being a starting pitcher or everyday player. He’s got to wait for the time, and he’s not sure when that is, so I think that sort of compounds the problem on when to relax and when to gear up. It’s not easy when you don’t get the ball on a regular basis to get in a rhythm. He’s got a situation now where he has to earn his way back, just for his own good, but it will happen. It’s something to really learn from.

On grooming his successor as manager, Don Mattingly:

He has been hands on here. I confer with him often. This is not going to be anything different. Knowing at some point that it would be his job, at least I was hoping it would be, I have been doing this for a couple of years.

On Mattingly’s lack of managerial experience:

People really to experience being probably safer. I have no hesitation about Donnie’s ability, because I’ve been around him. Having never managed in the minor leagues myself, it’s just something I feel good about.

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Tulowitzki Homers Again As Dodgers Fall To Rockies

Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) – Todd Helton went 4-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI and Troy Tulowitzki continued his torrid September with a two-run homer, as the Rockies downed Los Angeles, 7-5, on the day Joe Torre announced he will step down as Dodgers manager following the season.

Melvin Mora had two hits and drove in a pair for Colorado, which has won two straight and pulled within 1 1/2 games of the NL West-leading Giants. The Rockies also trail Atlanta for the top spot in the wild card race by 2 1/2 games.

Ubaldo Jimenez (19-6) was credited with the win after allowing four runs on six hits and three walks over 6 1/3 innings.

A.J. Ellis went 3-for-4 with two doubles and two RBI for the Dodgers, who named hitting coach Don Mattingly as Torre’s successor next year.

LA pushed a run across in the ninth on Casey Blake’s RBI single and had the go-ahead run at the plate, but Huston Street struck out Matt Kemp to pick up his 20th save of the season.

Hiroki Kuroda (10-13) remains winless in seven career starts against Colorado, as he was charged with five runs — three earned — on seven hits in six innings in the club’s third straight setback.

Eric Young Jr. reached on Rafael Furcal’s error to lead off the game, and with two outs, Tulowitzki turned on a high fastball and sent it down the left-field line and over the wall for his 12th home run this month — half his season total.

LA tied it in the second when Kemp tripled home Jay Gibbons and scored on Ellis’ base hit to center.

Colorado put runners on the corners in the fourth, and Mora, Seth Smith and Miguel Olivo recorded consecutive run-scoring singles for a 5-2 game.

Ellis’ double plated Kemp in the home half, and Gibbons’ groundout an inning later knocked in Ryan Theriot, who was hit by a pitch to start the frame.

Despite Young getting picked off trying to steal third in the seventh, the Rockies managed to get two insurance runs off Jonathan Broxton.

With two outs and runners on first and second, Helton drove home Carlos Gonzalez with a line drive hit to right, and Mora’s blooper down the right- field line brought in Tulowitzki for a three-run cushion.

LA threatened by loading the bases with one out in the bottom half, but Matt Belisle struck out Blake and got Kemp on a routine grounder to short to end the inning.

The Dodgers have won five consecutive series with the Rockies at home and 10 of their last 11 series with Colorado overall…The Dodgers are the only team to have beaten Jimenez twice this season…Jimenez matched New York’s CC Sabathia and Philadelphia’s Roy Halladay as baseball’s only 19-game winners. He is 18-0 when the Rockies score three or more runs in a game…Ryan Spilborghs extended his hitting streak to 11 in the eighth inning with a pinch-hit single…LA’s Andre Ethier recorded a single and four walks in five plate appearances…Gibbons had three hits in the loss.

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Tonight's Dodgers-Rockies Lineups

Here are tonight’s lineups:

Rockies
Young 2B
Fowler CF
Gonzalez RF
Tulowitzki SS
Helton 1B
Mora 3B
Smith LF
Olivo C
Jomenez P

Dodgers
Furcal SS
Theriot 2B
Ethier RF
Loney 1B
Gibbons LF
Blake 3B
Kemp CF
Ellis C
Kuroda P

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Kuroda And Jimenez Face Off In Dodgers-Rockies Opener

(Sports Network) - If the Colorado Rockies clinch a playoff spot, they owe most of the credit to Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez. Two of the hottest hitters in the major leagues will try to push the club closer to that goal tonight in the opener of a three-game road series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Tulowitzki has been on a tear the last two weeks, batting .386 with 11 home runs and 27 RBI in his past 14 contests. The Rockies are 11-3 over that stretch. Gonzalez leads the National League with a .341 batting average and finished with two hits and two RBI in Wednesday's 9-6 win over San Diego to salvage the finale of a three-game series.

Colorado also received another impressive performance from Tulowitzki, who homered twice and drove in seven runs. Tulowitzki, Jonathan Herrera and Jay Payton all finished with three hits for the Rockies, who sit 2 1/2 games behind San Francisco for the NL West lead. They're also that many games back of Atlanta in the Wild Card race, while San Diego is a half-game off the lead in both.

"It feels great," Tulowitzki said of Wednesday's performance. "It feels even better when your team is coming down the stretch run and you're helping out."

Jorge De La Rosa earned the win over the Padres, despite permitting five runs and six hits in 7 1/3 innings. Huston Street later pitched the ninth for his 19th save of the season.

Rox ace Ubaldo Jimenez tries to become the third pitcher in the majors with 19 wins when he takes the mound Friday night in Hollywood. Jimenez is 18-6 with a 2.75 earned run average in 29 starts this season and 1-0 in his last two chances since dropping four straight decisions. Jimenez did not factor in the outcome of last Saturday's 2-1 win over Arizona, but fired six innings of one- run ball. He also struck out eight for the second straight outing.

Jimenez, who is trying to match CC Sabathia and Roy Halladay with 19 wins, lost to the Dodgers the last time he faced them on August 27 at Coors Field. He was reached for three runs and nine hits over seven innings in a 6-2 loss, falling to 5-5 with a 5.23 ERA in 14 career games (13 starts) in this series.

Los Angeles lost the last two portions of a three-game road series to the San Francisco Giants and suffered an embarrassing 10-2 loss on Thursday. Dodgers starter Ted Lilly lasted just 3 1/3 innings and surrendered six runs and seven hits in 3 1/3 innings, while Jeff Weaver and Jon Link both gave up two runs in relief.

"They're on a roll right now," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said of the Giants. "They're swinging the bats really well. They're pitching well."

Russ Mitchell homered to highlight the Dodgers' offense and Rafael Furcal scored in the first inning on a throwing error. Los Angeles went 3-7 on a 10- game road trip and will begin a six-game residency versus the Rockies and Padres tonight.

Slated to handle pitching duties tonight for Los Angeles will be Hiroki Kuroda, who is 10-12 in 28 starts this season to go along with a 3.32 ERA. Kuroda did not record a decision his previous time out in a 4-2 Dodgers' win at Houston last Friday, as he held the hosts to a run and four hits in six innings.

Kuroda, a right-hander, threw seven innings of two-run ball in a no-decision versus Colorado on August 18 and is 0-3 with a 6.55 earned run average through six career meetings -- all starts -- with the

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