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Dodgers clinch NL west, playoff berth

Dodgers clinch NL west, playoff berth

Los Angeles Dodgers' Hyun-Jin Ryu, right, of South Korea, celebrates with teammates after the Dodgers clinched the NL West title with a 7-6 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in a baseball game Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013, in Phoenix. Photo: Associated Press/ AP Photo/Matt York

PHOENIX (AP) — The Los Angeles Dodgers became the first team to clinch a postseason berth, wrapping up their first NL West title since 2009 when they rallied past the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-6 on Thursday behind two homers from Hanley Ramirez.

Despite an NL-high payroll of $214 million-plus on opening day, the Dodgers got off to an 30-42 start and were last in the division, 9½ games behind the first-place Diamondbacks, before play on June 22. Los Angeles has gone 58-23 since.

The Dodgers trailed 6-3 in the sixth and A.J. Ellis hit a tiebreaking homer off Josh Collmenter (4-4) leading off the eighth.

J.P. Howell (2-1) got two outs for the victory.

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Jobless claims signal firmer labor market

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