Manager Dale Sveum had said he wanted to keep Dempster at 85-95 pitches. He stuck to his word, pulling Dempster after 89 pitches.
Happy days in L.A.
The Dodgers celebrated the return of their two big hitters with just enough offense to down the Padres, 2-1, Friday night in Los Angeles
Matt Kemp, who had missed 51 of the Dodgers' previous 53 games because of a left hamstring strain, was 2 for 4 with a double, while Andre Ethier, sidelined since June 28 with an oblique strain on his left side, was 0 for 2 and got hit by a pitch.
The Dodgers are 24-12 this season when Kemp and Ethier are in the starting lineup, and 24-28 the rest of the time. 'Nuff said.
Because of unfortunate circumstances, the Braves are being forced to give their former starting shortstop, Tyler Pastornicky, a second chance. Atlanta recalled Pastornicky from triple-A Gwinnett on Saturday after losing their second shortstop in a week.
On Friday night, Jack Wilson dislocated a joint in his right little finger and left in the fourth inning of Atlanta's 7-5 win over the Mets. Wilson has been filling in for starter Andrelton Simmons, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list after breaking the little finger on his right hand on a headfirst slide against the Phillies last Sunday.
Pastornicky began the season as Atlanta's starting shortstop, but poor fielding cost him the job after the Braves called up Simmons from the double-A Mississippi Braves on May 31.
Around the bigs
The St. Louis Cardinals activated first baseman Lance Berkman off the disabled list before the second game of their series against the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday. Berkman had been sidelined since he tore cartilage in his right knee while stretching for a throw May 19. He had surgery and returned ahead of schedule. . . .
The Arizona Diamondbacks activated lefthander Joe Saunders from the 15-day disabled list on Saturday, immediately started him against the Cubs, and saw him give up four runs (three earned) in six innings for this sixth loss. Understandable, inasmuch as Saunders had been sidelined since June 16 with a strain in his left shoulder. . . .
The Orioles have designated for assignment lefthander Dana Eveland after he went 0-1 with a 4.73 ERA in 14 appearances.
This report contains information from Inquirer wire services.