Dodgers 12, Braves 5


ATLANTA (AP) – Ramon Martinez hit a three-run homer and finished with five RBIs to lead the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 12-5 win over the Atlanta Braves on Monday.

Los Angeles scored seven runs in the first two innings, knocking John Thomson out of the game early.

Thomson (2-4) recorded only four outs while giving up seven runs, five earned, and seven hits with three walks. It was Thomson’s shortest start since June 9, 2004, at Detroit, when he lasted only one inning for the Braves in a rain-delayed game.

Thomson has posted three straight poor starts. After leading the NL with a 1.88 ERA through his first eight games, including six starts, Thomson’s ERA is now 4.06. He has allowed 15 earned runs in his last three starts.

Joe Beimel (2-0) pitched 1 2-3 perfect innings in relief of Brad Penny to earn the win.

Thomson gave up singles to Rafael Furcal and Kenny Lofton to open the game and then the next five batters reached base without hitting the ball out of the infield. The defense hurt Thomson with throwing errors by Edgar Renteria, Chipper Jones and Jeff Francoeur, and two of the four runs in the first inning were unearned.

An infield single by Nomar Garciaparra drove in the first run, and J.D. Drew, Matt Kemp and Willy Aybar reached on fielder’s choice grounders. Renteria made a wild toss toward second base after fielding Drew’s grounder, allowing Lofton to score.

Garciaparra came around on Jones’ errant throw to the plate on Aybar’s grounder to make it 3-0, and Russell Martin added a sacrifice fly.

Furcal, the former Braves shortstop, had two hits and scored two runs in his first game in Atlanta with the Dodgers.

The Dodgers added three runs in the second on run-scoring singles by Garciaparra and Martinez and a sacrifice fly by Kemp.

Todd Pratt singled in Ryan Langerhans in the bottom of the second for Atlanta’s first run. Martinez pushed the Dodgers’ lead to 8-1 by driving in Kemp with a fourth-inning single.

Penny suffered a fifth-inning collapse, giving up six straight hits and four runs, as he couldn’t stay in the game long enough to qualify for the win.

Penny gave up three straight doubles to Pratt, Matt Diaz and Marcus Giles, followed by three straight singles to Renteria, Jones and Wilson Betemit. Pulled from the game after the Braves cut the lead to 8-5, Penny grabbed a bat and swung at the water cooler in the Dodgers’ dugout.

Penny gave up nine hits and a season-high five runs in 4 1-3 innings, his shortest start of the year.

Drew opened the sixth with a high infield popup that Giles and first baseman Adam LaRoche lost in the sun for an infield double. Kemp followed with a single to drive in Drew.

Martinez hit a three-run drive in the ninth inning for his first homer of the season.

The Braves had a four-game winning streak end.

Notes: Kemp had his first major league RBI with his second-inning sacrifice fly and his first stolen base following a fourth-inning walk. … Los Angeles 2B Jeff Kent was held out for the second straight day with a sprained left wrist, but Drew returned after missing two games with a sore shoulder. … The Braves wore red shirts that previously had been reserved for Sunday home games. … Playing their 51st game, the Braves played their major league-low 19th home game as they opened a 10-game homestand.

AP-ES-05-29-06 1607EDT