Yes, I’m still alive …

… but no, I’m not at the game. Had airline problems getting here today, so we hired a guy named Paul Willis, whom I used to work with at the Rocky Mountain News back in the late ’90s, to cover the game for us tonight. I’ll be back at it tomorrow. The news on D-Lowe was no news at all, with the MRI results not known yet, apparently. And Randy Wolf was with the club, but no decision has been made yet on whether he’ll need a second rehab start. I have the game on in my hotel room. Dodgers are leading 5-3, bottom 7, but it is starting to smell like a game that might get away. Meanwhile, I’m going to relax the rest of the evening. See you tomorrow.

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My bad again — and my apologies to D-Lowe

Turns out he was NOT loafing it up the line on that 9-3 groundout. He was running as hard as he could run — on the left groin he had injured warming up for his relief appearance on Sunday against the Mets. Yet another example of the fallout of this team’s overworked bullpen. He’ll have an MRI tomorrow morning in Denver, after which more will be known about his condition. He says it only hurts when he lands while pitching. Meanwhile, the Dodgers have lost six of eight since winning their first four out of the break, and this would be a devastating loss if D-Lowe is out for a long period. We’ll see. Good night.

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Astros 2, Dodgers 1

We never did get an in-game medical report on D-Lowe, but it’s the first thing that will be asked after the game. Dodgers drop two of three to a team that was 14 games under .500 coming into this series and miss a golden opportunity to gain ground on the Pods, who remain a game back in the NL West. Dodgers fall to 56-46.

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Carlos Lee goes yard

The game stayed tied for about 7.5 seconds. As soon as the line dance ended, D.J. Houlton started Carlos Lee 2-0, and Lee put the next one on the railroad tracks. The guess here is this one is over. The way the Dodgers are hitting tonight, one run is about all they’re going to be able to muster. … After the home run, Grady pulled a double switch, bringing in Joe Beimel and Nomar at 3B. Betemit was taken out of the game. Now why would you want to take Wilson Betemit out of the game? … Astros 2, Dodgers 1, bottom 7

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Kent goes yard

He actually might have gone city block if the roof had been open. Well, not really, because the ball hit a beam supporting the light standard in left field. But he sure gave it quite a ride, to the point that Carlos Lee didn’t even turn around to watch it. Nice greeting for Stros reliever Chad Qualls, who had just come into the game and was facing his first batter. … By the way, since the last time we were here, way back in April of ’06, they have turned the foul poles into gigantic Chick-fil-A ads, with a picture of a cow’s head, clad in an Astros cap, with the words “Eat More Fowl” going vertically down each pole. Get it? Fowl. Hahahahahahahahaha. Real knee slapper there. The letters (and the cow’s head) all extend into fair territory, though, so at least there is no confusion on the part of the umpires if they have to make fair/foul — or, excuse me, fair/fowl — calls. … Betemit just grounded into a force play that was almost a GIDP. Loney then GIDP’d to end the inning. Betemit is 0 for 3 and hasn’t hit a ball out of the infield — and Grady says he is leaning toward starting him at 2B tomorrow night. … Seventh-inning stretch, time for them to play Deep in the Heart of Texas while the girls in the pink shirts, black shorts and black cowboy hats line dance on top of the dugout. … Dodgers 1, Astros 1, middle 7

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