PHOENIX -- Just because the Arizona Diamondbacks are out of it doesn't mean they are willing to be pushed around.
That was the attitude in the Arizona clubhouse after the Diamondbacks beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-1 on Friday night.Dan Haren had his best outing in a month, punctuating his night by plunking Andre Ethier with a pitch in the eighth inning."Good, aggressive baseball," Arizona manager A.J. Hinch said, "I love it."Manny Ramirez singled twice and doubled to improve to 13 for 24 in his career against Haren, but the rest of the Dodgers managed just three hits off the Arizona ace, including Matt Kemp's home run in the fifth.Haren (12-7) helped himself with an RBI single in Arizona's four-run second inning off Clayton Kershaw.After giving up 10 runs in his last two starts and 17 in his previous four, Haren held Los Angeles to a run on six hits in eighth innings, striking out eight, walking two, and hitting a batter.Haren and the Dodgers dugout drew a warning from home plate umpire Jerry Layne after Ethier was hit with two outs in the eighth."I tried to go in for effect. I'm not necessarily trying to drill the guy," Haren insisted, "but it got away from me and I got him. That's part of the game."Arizona slugger Mark Reynolds had been hit by reliever Ronald Belisario in the seventh."If he was protecting me, I appreciate it," Reynolds said of Haren. "That's what guys do, you protect your teammates. I think it definitely sets a tone that we're not going to back down. We may be 15 games out or 16 or whatever, but we're still here playing, we're out here to win and play the game the right way."Haren has 25 walks all season, and Ethier had a hard time believing he was hit by accident."That's what happens when I guess you go up there and he's afraid to pitch," Ethier said.Asked if he and Haren had any history, Ethier said, "No, but I guess we do now."Manager Joe Torre thought it was retaliation, too, "but that's the game of baseball," he said.Torre said Belisario wasn't trying to hit Reynolds."Belisario threw about three balls that almost got by Russell [Martin]," Torre said, "so I think it was just more his control than anything else."When Ethier got hit, that brought up Ramirez, who lined one deep to left, where Trent Oeltjen caught it at the wall to end the inning. It was the only time Haren got Ramirez out all night.In the ninth, Kemp doubled off Chad Qualls to put runners at second and third with one out, but Orlando Hudson struck out and pinch-hitter Mark Loretta flew out to right. Qualls got his 22nd save in 26 opportunities.The Dodgers had just won two of three in San Francisco but have lost five of seven overall to remain five games ahead of Colorado in the NL West.Kershaw (8-7) entered the game with a 1.06 ERA in his previous 10 starts but is winless in his last five outings. The Dodgers have lost all five of those starts. The four runs he allowed, all in the second inning, were the most he's given up since May 12, 18 outings ago."Just a bad inning," Kershaw said. "I could have controlled the damage a lot better than I did and I didn't do it."The 21-year-old right-hander struck out nine in just 4 1/3 innings but gave up six hits and walked four. He threw consecutive wild pitches to allow a run.Reynolds drew a leadoff walk in the second, then scored from first when Miguel Montero doubled down the left-field line.Kershaw walked Rusty Ryal, then Oeltjen singled to load the bases. Augie Ojeda beat out a double-play grounder as a run scored to make it 2-0.Haren got his eighth RBI of the season with a single up the middle, then consecutive wild pitches allowed Ojeda to advance to third, then home, and Arizona led 4-0.
Torre says RHP Chad Billingsley, who missed his last start with a left hamstring strain, had a good bullpen session on Thursday and could return to the rotation Monday or Tuesday. ... Arizona has the second-best record in the NL West since the All-Star break at 15-12; Los Angeles is 13-15. ... Kemp robbed Oeltjen with a diving catch in center in the eighth.
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PHOENIX - AUGUST 14: Relief pitcher Chad Qualls #50 of the Arizona Diamondbacks warms up before the major league...