LOS ANGELES (AP) -Andre Ethier wasn't hitting the ball, going 0 for 3 at the plate. He sure played game-saving defense, though.
Matt Kemp homered for the fourth consecutive game and Ethier drew a bases-loaded walk that forced in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning, sending the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 4-3 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.
Ethier prevented Arizona from scoring the tying and go-ahead runs with an outstanding catch of pinch-hitter Brandon Allen's drive in the eighth. Ethier jumped and snagged the ball at the top of the right-field wall before falling down and rolling over, the ball still snug in his glove.
``It was a combination of frustration and just saying, `I'm going to go for it,'' he said. ``I thought I had a shot the whole way off the bat. I kind of glanced over in the corner of my eye and saw that Kemp was going to wait back and play it off the wall. I half-jumped and ran through the wall at the same time and checked my body a little bit in the wall. I don't think I've had one that meaningful yet in my career.'
Ethier got up and found Kemp in his face ``trying to get me and rough me up a little bit.'
Kemp admitted he was more pumped up than Ethier.
``That was the play of the day right there,' Kemp said. ``I like to see that stuff. It excites me, man. I wanted to (rough him up), but I had to hold it in. We still had another inning to go.'
Allen didn't see the catch until watching the replay.
``I thought I hit it pretty high, so it didn't carry too much. I was booking it and I waited for the crowd's reaction,' he said. ``It was a great catch by Andre. O-Dog (Orlando Hudson) was running across the field with his hands up, so I saw him and kind of got the idea.'
Clay Zavada issued the key walk to Ethier, who tops the NL West leaders with a career-best 88 RBIs.
Ronald Belisario (3-0) earned the victory, allowing one hit in 1 1-3 innings. Jonathan Broxton pitched the ninth for his 30th save in 35 chances, ending Arizona's five-game winning streak.
Leo Rosales (1-1) took the loss, giving up one run and two hits in one-third of an inning. He also walked two.
``We battled and did our part to stay in the game, but the Ethier catch at the wall absolutely took the wind out of you,' Arizona manager A.J. Hinch said. ``It was the difference in the game. With the trajectory of the ball, off the bat I thought it was a homer. Then he kind of came out of nowhere. It was a big-time defensive play.'
Kemp went 2 for 3 with a walk and scored two runs for the Dodgers, who lost the series opener 5-3 in 10 innings Monday.
``I'm swinging the bat well and good things are happening,' he said. ``Hopefully, I can do that the rest of September and take it on into October and the playoffs.'
The Diamondbacks tied it at 3 with pinch-hit RBI singles by Rusty Ryal and John Hester in the sixth.
The Dodgers scored a run in the third on a throwing error by right fielder Justin Upton. Kemp led off with a single and stole second before Ethier flied out to right. Upton's throw to the infield glanced off Kemp between second and third as he was trying to get back to the bag and then bounced into foul territory behind third, allowing Kemp to score for a 3-1 lead.
``We should have had better backup on that play and been in position to at least keep him at third,' Hinch said, ``but you don't expect it to carom off him. It's a bad baseball play.'
Dodgers starter Vicente Padilla got his first RBI since 2005, giving the Dodgers a 2-1 lead in the second. The bloop single to short right field dropped behind the head of first baseman Chad Tracy. Second baseman Ryan Roberts grabbed it and fired to the plate. Russell Martin came diving in headfirst and rolled over as he narrowly avoided the tag of catcher Miguel Montero.
The Dodgers tied the score at 1 in the first on Kemp's 23rd homer. Arizona went ahead in the top half on Gerardo Parra's RBI single off Padilla's leg.
NOTES: The Dodgers recalled left-hander Scott Elbert, catcher A.J. Ellis and outfielder Jason Repko from Triple-A Albuquerque as active rosters expanded from 25 to 40. ... Arizona claimed RHP Kevin Mulvey off waivers from Minnesota. ... Dodgers RHP Hiroki Kuroda made a rehab start for Class-A Inland Empire, allowing five hits and one unearned run in five innings, with five strikeouts and one walk. ... The teams were distracted by a remote controlled airplane flying around in the top of the sixth. It finally crashed in front of Arizona's dugout, with infielder Augie Ojeda grabbing it and tearing it apart as the crowd booed.
The Associated Press News Service
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