Dodgers 14, Rockies 2 … and first place alone for the first time this season

Matt Kemp had a monster day, going 3 for 5 with a double and two HRs, one of them a grand slam. He is reaping the benefits of finally buying into the Torre/Mattingly approach to hitting, something Matty was resistant to for much of last season. This year, he has bought into it wholeheartedly, and the results are undeniable. He is hitting .383 with half of his 18 hits having gone for extra bases. He also has a .434 on-base percentage and a .723 slugging average. Orlando Hudson and Andre Ethier had big days, as well, the former going 3 for 4 with a double and three RBI, the latter 2 for 4 with a double, a sac fly and three RBI. And thanks to Scott Elbert, who was given the win by scorer’s discretion after J-Mac failed to go the requisite five, the Dodgers were able to get through what Joe Torre had said would be a “bullpen day” using just three pitchers. Two days after getting called up from Double-A, Elbert went 2 1/3, giving up solo homers to Brad Hawpe and Chris Iannetta (who was 1 for 21 before that blast) but not walking anybody. This was a big game for Elbert. … Dodgers scored 50 runs on a perfect, six-game homestand, with 77 hits. The winning streak is now eight, matching last year’s longest, and the record is 10-3. Dodgers lead the Pods by one game in the N.L. West. Off to Houston tomorrow morning, Clayton Kershaw vs. Russ Ortiz on Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park. Think the boys might score some runs in that yard?