Dodgers hit four HRs in 9th, Nomar beats Padres in 10th

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Heads were shaking in both clubhouses. Nobody

could believe what they had just seen.

Elias Says

Los Angeles Dodgers
With apologies to Jack Buck, we don't believe what we just saw at Dodger Stadium. Three other teams had hit four straight home runs in one inning, all of them in a four-year span. The Milwaukee Braves did it in the seventh inning at Cincinnati on June 8, 1961 (Eddie Mathews, Hank Aaron, Joe Adcock, Frank Thomas), the Indians did it in the sixth inning against the Angels on July 31, 1963 (Woodie Held, Pedro Ramos, Tito Francona and Larry Brown) and the Twins did it in the 11th inning at Kansas City on May 2, 1964 (Tony Oliva, Bob Allison, Jimmie Hall and Harmon Killebrew).

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And no wonder -- what they saw hadn't happened since 1964.

Los Angeles hit four consecutive homers in the bottom of the

ninth to tie the game, and Nomar Garciaparra's two-run homer in the

10th lifted the Dodgers to an 11-10 victory over the San Diego

Padres on Monday night and back into first place in the NL West.

"That was the greatest game I've ever seen. I've never seen

anything like that," Dodgers reliever Brett Tomko said.

"It was a great baseball game -- two good teams going at it.

They got the last big hit," said Brian Giles, who scored in the

top of the 10th to give the Padres a short-lived 10-9 lead.

After Los Angeles tied it in the ninth with four straight homers

-- just the fourth time that's happened in an inning in major league

history -- the Padres went ahead on Giles' double and Josh Bard's

two-out, single off Aaron Sele (8-6).

But Rudy Seanez (1-2) walked Kenny Lofton to begin the bottom

half, and Garciaparra followed by hitting his 18th homer deep into

the left field pavilion.

The capacity crowd of 55,831 at Dodger Stadium stood and cheered

for several minutes afterward.

Garciaparra had to talk his way back into the lineup after not

starting two games because of a strained left quad. Manager Grady

Little relented.

"I wanted to play. I was telling Grady: 'Let me play, let me

play,'" Garciaparra said. "I'm glad I was in the lineup. But you

know what won that game? It was that ninth inning. No one was

giving up."

Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew opened the ninth with homers off San

Diego's Jon Adkins. Russell Martin and Marlon Anderson then went

deep on the first two pitches thrown by Trevor Hoffman, who entered

with 475 career saves -- three shy of Lee Smith's major league


The last time a team hit four consecutive homers was on May 2,

1964, when the Minnesota Twins accomplished the feat against Kansas

City in the 11th inning.

Anderson, acquired by the Dodgers from the Washington Nationals

on Aug. 31, had a career-high five hits, and Kent had four as Los

Angeles moved a half-game ahead of the Padres.

"I can't explain it. It's absolutely the most wonderful night

of my career, for sure," Anderson said. "And to be able to do it

on this stage -- in a pennant race -- it was awesome. The guys pulled

together and stuck together. That was absolutely the most wonderful

game I've ever seen in my life at any level."

Fans who had left the game and were in the parking lot starting

streaming back into the ballpark during the long-ball display.

The Padres took a 9-5 lead in the top of the ninth by scoring

three runs off Takashi Saito on a wild pitch, Geoff Blum's

sacrifice fly and an RBI single by Josh Barfield.

Then came the stunning bottom of the ninth.

"You wouldn't expect anything different the way this division

has gone the last couple of years," Giles said. "There are a lot

of ups and downs in this game. This is going to go down to the

wire. It would be nice if both of us got in the playoffs."

The Padres have a 1½-game lead over Philadelphia in the

wild-card race.

Hoffman said he didn't remember giving up homers on back-to-back


"Marlon's been in a groove," Hoffman said. "You've got to tip

your cap. It was just a pretty impressive ballgame on both sides of

the field."

Hoffman would have started the ninth had the Padres not scored

three times to take a four-run lead, which took him out of a save


"It's something we've been done for the last 13 or 14 years. I

prepare to go in there when there are two guys on. Unfortunately,

there were two guys in," he said with a smile.

The Padres snapped a 4-4 tie in the eighth against Jonathan

Broxton on a run-scoring double by Barfield and an RBI single by

pinch-hitter Todd Walker.

The Dodgers made it 6-5 in the bottom of the inning when

Anderson tripled and scored on a single by Wilson Betemit. Scott

Linebrink struck out Garciaparra with runners at second and third

to end the inning.

The Padres took a 4-0 lead in the first after Brad Penny retired

the first two batters. Adrian Gonzalez singled and scored on Mike

Piazza's double. After Russell Branyan drew a walk, Mike Cameron

hit a two-run triple and Blum followed with an RBI single.

The Dodgers battled back against Jake Peavy to tie it on Jeff

Kent's RBI double in the first, solo homers by Anderson in the

second and Rafael Furcal in the third, and back-to-back doubles by

Kent and Drew later in the third.

Penny was lifted after allowing seven hits and four runs in five

innings. He walked three and struck out six. Peavy was also taken

out after five innings, giving up nine hits and four runs. He

walked one and struck out five.Game notes
The four-game series drew 219,124 -- the largest ever for a

four-game series at Dodger Stadium. ... Piazza, who played for the

Dodgers from 1992-98, went 1-for-2 with two walks, making him

9-for-36 with no homers and four RBI against his former team this

season. ... Penny made four starts against the Padres this season,

going 0-2 with two no-decisions and allowing 19 earned runs in 20

innings. ... Peavy made three starts against the Dodgers, going 2-0

with one no-decision. He and giving up six earned runs in 19

innings. ... Kent hit two doubles, giving him 499 in his career and

tying him for 45th place on baseball's career list with Rusty