Robles, playing in place of ailing leadoff hitter Cesar Izturis,
capped his five-hit night with the go-ahead RBI single in the 11th
inning to lift the Dodgers to a 4-3 victory over the Colorado
"He has a pretty darn good idea of how to hit leadoff,"
Dodgers manager Jim Tracy said. "He's not fast, he's not a base
stealer, but he knows how to play the game."
The Dodgers signed Robles from the Mexican League in the
offseason with the caveat that if he didn't make the 25-man roster
after spring training, he would go back to Mexico City. That's what
happened, but when injuries started creeping up in May, Los Angeles
went back to Mexico and purchased his contract.
It's proving to be a good move. He is 9-for-19 since starting in
place of Izturis, the All-Star shortstop who sat out his fourth
straight game with a hurting right hamstring that Tracy said isn't
getting any better.
"I knew that I could play with guys up here, and I just tried
to do everything right and learned to play the game," Robles said.
"I just try to put the ball in play, and that is working."
Izturis is one of many Dodgers who have spent ample time in the
trainer's room this season. Earlier on Monday, J.D. Drew became the
14th Dodgers player to go on the 15-day disabled list -- his season
in jeopardy after Arizona's Brad Halsey hit him with a pitch and
broke his left wrist Sunday.
"We all know what the circumstances are," Tracy said. "We've
talked about it as a group. We've got six more games between now
and the All-Star break. We picked up a game against everyone ahead
of us in our division tonight. We've just got to take it a day at a
time and deal with the circumstances as they confront us."
Jay Witasick (0-4) took the loss for Colorado.
Called up to replace Drew on the roster, Chin-Feng Chen had his
first major league hit and RBI with a two-run single in the
seventh to cut the Los Angeles deficit to 3-2. Robles then tied the
game with an RBI single off Bobby Seay. All three runs were charged
to David Cortes, who relieved Byung-Hyun Kim and failed to get an
out, leading to the bullpen's 15th blown save of the season, most
in the National League.
"Kim gave us a great start and we kicked it. We kicked his
start," Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said.
Kim, whose job is in jeopardy because of the pending return of
starter Shawn Chacon, allowed no runs and five hits over six
innings. He lowered his ERA to 4.29 as a starter this season, which
is lower than everyone in the Colorado rotation besides Chacon.
Kim plunked the third batter he faced, Jeff Kent, and Kent
stepped toward the mound, causing the benches and bullpens to
clear. No punches were thrown and the game settled into a pitcher's
Dodgers starter Jeff Weaver allowed just five hits over six
innings and got out of a number of jams. Wilson's RBI triple came
with no out in the fourth and Weaver didn't let him score. In the
fifth, the Rockies had the bases loaded with one out, but Weaver
struck out Wilson and got Garrett Atkins to pop out to end the
The Rockies, the worst team in the NL, left 10 on base and
batted 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
Relaford's run in the sixth put the Rockies ahead 3-0. It was
originally ruled a stolen base, but was later changed and ruled a
fielder's choice because the other runner, Eddy Garabito, was
thrown out at second after Relaford scored.
Kim had six strikeouts and bolstered his case to stay in the
rotation, which is where he says he feels more comfortable. Just a
few weeks ago, Hurdle had called him in to tell him he would be
released, not sent back to the bullpen, but the same day, Chacon's
injury got worse and Kim got his reprieve.
With Chacon about to return, Kim is on the bubble again,
although Joe Kennedy's start for Wednesday has been pushed back and
Kennedy has been the subject of trade talks.
Kim leads the majors with 11 hit batters. ... Umpires
warned both benches after Kim hit Kent and the Dodgers hit three
batters, but home plate umpire Doug Eddings didn't eject any of the
Los Angeles pitchers. ... Izturis was the last Dodger to collect
five hits -- on May 17 against the Marlins. ... The Rockies fell to
0-3 in extra innings. The Dodgers improved to 5-1.
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