DODGERS: FROM PARK TO REVERSE HE THROWS GEM THROUGH EIGHT, BUT SHAW BLOWS IT IN THE NINTH MONTREAL 4, DODGERS 1.
Manager Jim Tracy preached it before Tuesday's game against the Montreal Expos, the idea that even though the Dodgers' role players had largely led the team into a pennant race, now was the time for the stars to take over.
``We're at the point of the season where our core guys are going to have to step up and they're well aware of that,'' Tracy said.
Tracy's plea will need at least another day to take hold, because even though two lesser-known Dodgers batters did their share, the big-money hitters and closer faltered in a 4-1 loss to the Expos in front of 30,085 at Dodger Stadium.
The Dodgers, who lost their fifth consecutive game, took a 1-0 lead into the ninth, but Tracy pulled starting pitcher Chan Ho Park in favor of Jeff Shaw (3-3).
The Expos loaded the bases with one out on a single by Peter Bergeron, a double by Vladimir Guerrero and an intentional walk to Lee Stevens, and Orlando Cabrera drove all three home with a double to left field.
Mark Smith then singled and Cabrera scored on a fielder's-choice grounder by Michael Barrett. Graeme Lloyd (8-3) pitched the final 1 1/3 innings to earn the victory and drop the Dodgers three games behind Arizona and two behind San Francisco in the National League West.
``You don't want to lose games like that at this point in the season, especially when Chan Ho pitched such an excellent game,'' said catcher Chad Kreuter, who drove in the Dodgers' only run with a second-inning home run.
``He had them stifled and shut down. It bites you for sure.''
The Dodgers had a chance to pad their lead in the eighth off Lloyd, when Eric Karros, Kreuter and Dave Hansen all walked to load the bases with two outs, but Paul Lo Duca, hitting for Cora, struck out. The Dodgers stranded 12 runners total.
The loss wasted a brilliant effort from Park, who gave up three hits in eight innings, but the only offense came from Alex Cora, just promoted from the bottom of the lineup, and Kreuter, rarely promoted from the end of the bench.
Cora singled twice but didn't receive much support from the middle of the order.
Karros struck out with the bases loaded in the first inning and stranded a total of six runners in the game, Shawn Green grounded into a double play with two on in the fifth and Gary Sheffield stranded two runners in the seventh by flying out.
But Park, coming off one of his worst starts of the season, dominated the Expos. He erased a leadoff walk to Bergeron in the first when Guerrero grounded into a double play, and after he walked Smith in the second, Park retired the next 12 batters.
Park lost his bid for a no-hitter in the sixth, when with two outs, Bergeron lined a triple down the right-field line. Park escaped the jam when Geoff Blum grounded out to second.
Another scare came in the eighth, when with one out, Smith hit what seemed to be a fairly routine fly ball to right-center, but Green and Marquis Grissom crossed signals and the ball fell in and went to the wall.
Grissom made a strong relay to Cora, who threw Smith out at third base with a one-hop throw on a close play. Randy Knorr followed with a single, but Park retired Mike Mordecai and pinch-hitter Fernando Segiugnol.
NL WEST STANDINGS
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|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Date:||Aug 15, 2001|
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