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Haren stings D-backs with bat to pick up win

Bases-clearing double fuels Dodgers' four-run fourth inning @kengurnick

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers found someone who can drive in runs with the bases loaded.

Dan Haren.

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LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers found someone who can drive in runs with the bases loaded.

Dan Haren.

View Full Game Coverage

The starting pitcher cleared the bases with a two-out double in a four-run fourth inning as the Dodgers beat the last-place D-backs on Saturday night, 6-4, trimming their National League West deficit behind the Giants to 6 1/2 games.

It was only the second extra-base hit in 43 at-bats with the bases loaded this year for the Dodgers, and the three RBIs with the bases loaded tied Haren for second-most on the club.

"I was a good hitter a few years ago. Not so much now," said Haren, a lifetime .208 batter who hit .364 in 2010 but came into this game at .115. "I was just trying to hit the ball hard. It felt really good, any time you can help yourself out. I got a pitch I could handle and went the other way."

Haren, who was with the D-backs in 2008-10, beat Josh Collmenter in a matchup that needed no radar gun. The starters combined for 186 pitches, not one registering as high as 90 mph.

Two of those pitches were turned around for two-run homers by hitters at the opposite end of the long-ball spectrum -- Paul Goldschmidt for Arizona and Dee Gordon for the Dodgers.

Kenley Jansen picked up a save for the second consecutive night, despite allowing a ninth-inning run for the second consecutive night, this time on Martin Prado's homer and 1,000th career hit. The Dodgers are 10-3 against Arizona this year.

Haren allowed three runs on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings. At 7-4, he is on pace for a 16-win season, which would match his career high.

But continuing a disturbing personal trend, Haren fell behind early, and it might have been worse except for a successful manager's challenge.

Didi Gregorius led off the game with a double. One out later, Goldschmidt hammered a 2-1 pitch for a two-run homer, his 14th. It was the ninth consecutive start that Haren has been scored upon in the first or second inning.

"I was talking to Zack [Greinke] about why I struggle early, and he said maybe my off-speed stuff isn't as crisp early in the game and I should establish it more," Haren said. "I should have listened to him today."

Despite a diving stop and throw by second baseman Gordon, Miguel Montero was ruled safe at first base by umpire Bob Davidson, who motioned that the throw pulled Adrian Gonzalez off the bag. The Dodgers challenged and the call was overturned.

"The challenge play helped erase a little bit of the momentum," Haren said.

The Dodgers tied the game on Gordon's two-out homer in the third inning. Miguel Rojas, starting at third base with Justin Turner healing and Chone Figgins on the disabled list, singled and was bunted to second by Haren before Gordon turned on an 86-mph fastball and lined it into the right-field box seats, his second of the season.

Arizona regained the lead in the fourth on consecutive singles by Montero, Aaron Hill and Prado, but it didn't last long.

A walk by Yasiel Puig, a hit-and-run single by Gonzalez and an RBI single by Matt Kemp tied it up again. After Goldschmidt robbed Andre Ethier of a hit for the second time, A.J. Ellis was walked intentionally to load the bases. Rojas flied out to right field, too shallow to score Gonzalez from third, but Haren tagged a 1-0 pitch to the right-center gap that cleared the bases for a 6-3 lead.

"You put yourself in a situation to come out of there with a tie," said Collmenter. "You get the eighth hitter to pop up, and now you've got to get the pitcher and you make a bad pitch and let him do that. It's the last thing that you want to have happen, and it was the worst thing that could happen. So it's just frustrating."

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for

Los Angeles Dodgers, Dee Gordon, Dan Haren, Kenley Jansen