Ryan Braun had a three-run homer among his four hits, and Milwaukee closer Trevor Hoffman got Manny Ramirez on a bases-loaded fly to right to finish the Brewers' 6-5 victory over the road-weary Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday night.
Manny Parra pitched eight outstanding innings, but Milwaukee nearly blew a four-run lead after he gave up two hits to open the ninth. James Loney hit Hoffman's first pitch for a two-run double, and Orlando Hudson drove him home to cut Milwaukee's lead to a run.
After the Dodgers loaded the bases on a swinging bunt and a hit batsman, Ramirez came up with the crowd remembering his dramatic pinch-hit grand slam last month. But he could only manage the fly ball, keeping him without an RBI in 10 straight games.
Hoffman earned his 24th save despite giving up three hits and a run for the Brewers, who climbed back to .500 by jumping on Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw (8-6), who hadn't lost since June 10.
Kershaw had an 0.79 ERA in his previous nine starts, but the 21-year-old left-hander issued a season-high six walks, including four straight in the fourth inning to bring in two of his three runs allowed. Braun connected in the sixth off reliever Jeff Weaver.
Parra (6-8) had the longest start of his career and the best outing yet in his surge since returning from the minors last month, yielding eight hits and four runs while improving to 3-0 in his last five outings. Parra even got his third hit of the season before scoring on Braun's 22nd homer.
Braun added three singles after going 2 for 13 in San Diego last weekend. Casey McGehee had two hits and scored two runs for Milwaukee, which has four wins in six games for the first time in a month.
The Brewers plummeted from first place to fourth in the NL Central during a dismal July, yet they're still just four games off the division lead in third place.
Thanks to a travel schedule that only ESPN could love, the Dodgers landed in California just before 3 a.m. after winning a Sunday evening game in Atlanta. Hudson drove in two runs for the Dodgers, whose major league-best record dropped to 65-41.
Kershaw lost his control in the fourth after Braun's leadoff single. Bill Hall walked on four pitches with the bases loaded, and catcher Mike Rivera drew a full-count walk for just his third RBI of the season.
Ramirez went 1 for 5 with a first-inning double, again failing to drive in a run since his pinch-hit grand slam against Cincinnati on July 22. Ramirez, who is in a 7-for-42 slump, had an early RBI chance with Kershaw on third base in the third, but grounded out.
NOTES: Dodgers manager Joe Torre said RHP Chad Billingsley is fine after cramping caused by dehydration forced him out of Sunday night's game after five innings. Billingsley, who earned his 11th win, did all his normal day-after work on Monday. ... Actor Henry Winkler, who played The Fonz on the Milwaukee-set "Happy Days," attended the game. There's a life-size bronze statue of Winkler in character in downtown Milwaukee.