LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kris Medlen took a three-hit shutout into the eighth inning and doubled home a run, Troy Glaus homered for the fourth time in five games, and Atlanta beat Los Angeles 4-3 on Thursday night for its ninth straight victory.
The Braves' streak is their best since a 15-game stretch during the 2000 season — which was the longest by an NL team since the 1951 New York Giants (16 straight) and the longest by the Braves' franchise since it moved from Milwaukee to Atlanta in 1966. The Dodgers ended it in the finale of a three-game series at Los Angeles.
Medlen (3-1) was charged with three runs — two earned — and six hits in a career-high 7 1-3 innings, striking out three and walking none in his ninth big league start. The right-hander departed with a 4-0 lead and the bases loaded before pinch-hitter Ronnie Belliard greeted Peter Moylan with an RBI single. Blake DeWitt followed James Loney to the plate after a wild throw by rookie right fielder Jason Heyward.
Jamey Carroll scored the third run on Rafael Furcal's groundout, and Matt Kemp walked before Eric O'Flaherty replaced Moylan and struck out Andre Ethier.
Former Dodger Takashi Saito, who had to close for Billy Wagner after four appearances in four days by the All-Star lefty, retired the first two batters in the ninth before injuring his left hamstring throwing an 0-1 strike to Russell Martin. Jonny Venters came on and strick out Martin with his first pitch for his first major league save.
Hiroki Kuroda (5-4) gave up four runs — three earned — and seven hits in six innings before he was removed for a pinch-hitter. Jeff Weaver was brought in to replace him in the sixth, but injured himself making his warmup tosses and was taken out with an undisclosed injury after a visit by trainer Stan Conte and manager Joe Torre.
Martin Prado opened the game with a double and scored on a two-out single by Glaus, ending a string of 31 consecutive scoreless innings by Dodgers pitchers — the team's longest since a 37-inning streak in July 1991. Glaus made it 2-0 in the fourth with a towering drive into the lower seats in the left field corner for his 10th home run, and Nate McLouth added an RBI double later in the inning.
Glaus is picking up right where he left off in May, when he had six homers and 28 RBIs to earn NL player of the month honors. The converted first baseman has homered in four of his last five games. He just missed one on Wednesday in Atlanta, when Philadelphia's Raul Ibanez kept his towering drive in play by reaching over the yellow line. The ball landed in the warning track, and Glaus had to settle for a double.
Heyward took the bat out of Glaus' hands in the fifth when he tried to steal second base with two out and was erased by Russell Martin.
But Medlen helped himself out at the plate in the sixth with a sinking liner to left field that Ramirez missed on a shoestring attempt before rolling over and having to run back for it. It was Medlen's third hit and first RBI in 25 big league at-bats.
Both teams played without their regular third baseman. Atlanta's Chipper Jones was sidelined because of inflammation in the ring finger on his right hand, which has bothered him since last weekend's series against Pittsburgh and forced him to leave Wednesday's game. Casey Blake was scratched from Torre's original lineup because of back spasms.
NOTES: Bobby Cox never got to play at Dodger Stadium when he was in the Dodgers' minor league system, having gotten as far as the Triple-A level. As a manager, he is 68-63) here during the regular season, and this four-game series will be his swan song at Chavez Ravine. "I came to my first game here in '64 after our season in Albuquerque," he recalled. "I dropped off Mickey Hartling, one of our catchers in Albuquerque who lived in L.A., and still does. In fact he's coming to the game tonight. I drove him home in a '53 Buick Roadmaster that I paid 350 bucks for. I wish I'd kept it." ... Saito had a career-high 39 saves for Los Angeles in 2007. ... Medlen made four relief appearances against the Dodgers as a rookie last year and got a victory in one of them with two hitless innings, striking out Ethier, Manny Ramirez and Kemp in succession.