Barry Zito Picks Up 1st Win of Season

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Barry Zito outpitched Chad Billingsley to record his first win of the season on his sixth attempt, and the San Francisco Giants beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-1 on Friday night.

The Dodgers have lost both games they've played since slugging left fielder Manny Ramirez was suspended for 50 games by Major League Baseball for using a banned drug. At the time of the suspension, they were a major league-best 21-8.

Zito (1-2) allowed a run and eight hits over six innings. He struck out five, walked two and escaped a bases-loaded jam in the fifth. The 2002 AL Cy Young winner was removed for a pinch-hitter in the seventh when his teammates broke a 1-all tie with Edgar Renteria's sacrifice fly and a run-scoring infield hit by Pablo Sandoval.

Brian Wilson, who hadn't pitched since last Sunday, worked 1 1-3 innings for his seventh save in eight chances after Merkin Valdez walked two batters with two out.

Wilson's last three saves have required four outs each. The right-hander ended the eighth inning by slipping a called third strike against Casey Blake, who fouled off six two-strike pitches during his 13-pitch at-bat.

Billingsley (5-1) gave up three runs and eight hits over seven innings, struck out five and walked four. The right-hander, who came in 4-0 with a 3.21 ERA against San Francisco, matched zeros with Zito through five innings before the Giants broke through with a run in the sixth.

Aaron Rowand lifted a flyball down the right-field line with runners at the corners and one out. Andre Ethier raced in and made a backhanded catch in foul territory and bounced off the short wall in front of the box seats as Renteria tagged up and scored.

The Dodgers tied it in the bottom half when Matt Kemp led off with a single and scored on a two-out double by Casey Blake, whose drive to the alley glanced off the glove of left-fielder Fred Lewis as he made a valiant diving attempt.

Billingsley overcame a temporary touch of wildness in the fourth, striking out Juan Uribe on a 3-2 pitch after walking two batters and hitting Travis Ishikawa on the leg. One of the walks was to Rowand, who was 0 for 2 and has one hit in 26 at-bats.

The victory was the second in a row for the Giants, who had alternated wins and losses over their previous 11 games following a
five-game winning streak. They're 13-0 when they score first.


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