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The Battle of the Claytons Goes to the Dodgers

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In the battle of Claytons, it wasn't Matt Kemp or Andre Ethier who both made their returns from the disabled list. It wasn't Clayton Kershaw who was coming off of his All Star Game triumph.

No, the decider of the game was Mark Ellis whose two-run homer in the sixth inning off of Padres starter Clayton Richard gave the Dodgers the 2-1 win.

"I knew I got it good," Ellis said. "It was just a matter of keeping it fair or not."

Through the first five innings, the Dodgers had no answers for Richard save for a single and double by Kemp and an infield double by Juan Uribe (with a huge assist to shortstop Everth Cabrera.)

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But after Tony Gwynn, Jr. led off the sixth inning with a pinch-hit single, Ellis' bomb to the left field box seats brought the anxious crowd to their feet.

"It was a hanging curveball I think — a slider maybe," Ellis commented. "Probably a pitch he would like to have back."

Clayton vs. Clayton. It was clear that Clayton Kershaw was having a harder time dealing with the Padres lineup than Clayon Richard was with the Dodgers. Which was surprising since the Padres came into the game with a National League-worst .234 batting average.

By the sixth inning, Kershaw had reached the 100-pitch count. Normally alarm bells would sound, but manager Don Mattingly didn't seem too perturbed.

"He was good," Mattingly said. "As you're watching, I know his pitch count was getting up there a little bit, and you're kind of wondering about the All Star Game and those pitches and stuff like that. But he just hung in there, made pitches when he had to."

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Kershaw didn't seem worse for the wear.

"I felt fine tonight," Kershaw commented. "I felt good. I threw more pitches than I would have liked in the All Star Game obviously, but I felt good tonight."

Thanks to Ellis' homer, Kershaw got the win.

As for Richard despite making that one mistake to Ellis he lasted into the eighth inning. It seemed like the Dodgers had no idea what was coming at them.

"His ball moves a lot," Ellis admitted. "He's got a lot of movement, a lot of deception. He's a big guy, kind of a little bit funky the way it comes at you. But the main thing is he changes speeds well. His ball moves all over the place."

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Ronald Beli-ain't-sorry-o There was no need for apologies from Ronald Belisario. Belisario missed workouts at Dodger Stadium on Thursday after being detained by customs officials in Miami on his way home from Venezuela. Belisario said that he was released after an hour and arrived in Los Angeles at 9:45 p.m.

Apparently Belisario didn't need a workout. He retired all three batters he faced in the eighth inning getting a strikeout.

Belisario is known for his travel issues. He missed the 2011 season being denied a visa after testing positive for cocaine.

Javy Guerra Out Indefinitely. After coming off the disabled list on July 6 with right knee inflammation, Guerra pitched a scoreless seventh inning giving up a leadoff single. It seemed to give some relief to Mattingly.

"I was a little nervous with Javy," Mattingly said. "He's got some stuff going on at home. So I was a little nervous about him."

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Guerra told reporters his father had a heart attack Friday morning and would require open-heart surgery. His father was taken to a hospital in Laredo, Mexico where Guerra will travel and be out indefinitely. Guerra said he was glad to come to the ballpark.

"I'm thankful I got to come out here," Guerra said. "It's good to see the guys. It just keeps you off your feet. You don't really think about it too much even though it's in the back of your mind."