Thursday's NL Capsules Print
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Thursday, 26 July 2007 19:01
MLB Headline News

 PHILADELPHIA (AP) -Jesus Flores hit a go-ahead, three-run homer in the eighth inning Thursday, lifting the Washington Nationals to a 7-6 win over the Philadelphia Phillies, who also lost All-Star second baseman Chase Utley to a broken hand.
Ryan Howard homered and Pat Burrell had three hits and two RBIs for the Phillies, who entered with a five-game winning streak, which had matched their season high.
Ryan Zimmerman grounded to third leading off the eighth but reached on a throwing error by Wes Helms. Jose Mesa (0-2), pitching in his 1,000th major league game, walked Austin Kearns with one out and Flores connected with two outs.
Jon Rauch (6-2) pitched two scoreless innings, and Chad Cordero finished for his 20th save in 27 chances. Chris Coste hit an RBI grounder, and a two-out walk to Carlos Ruiz put runners at the corners before Abraham Nunez grounded out.
Utley was hit in the fifth inning by John Lannan, who was making his major league debut. Utley finished the game, going 2-for-4, but X-rays afterward showed he broke a bone in the hand.
Utley planned to see a specialist on Friday but hopes to be back within a month.
Reds 6, Brewers 5
CINCINNATI (AP) - Ken Griffey Jr. hit his 588th homer, and the Reds rallied against All-Star closer Francisco Cordero.
After Scott Hatteberg's single off Cordero (0-3) tied it in the ninth, Javier Valentin's single in the 10th gave the Reds three victories in their four-game series against the fading NL Central leaders.
Jared Burton (2-1) got the win after the NL's worst bullpen blew a lead of its own.
Since they opened an 8 1/2-game lead on June 23, the Brewers have gone 13-15 and let the Cubs get back into the race. Their lineup has been the main problem, hitting an NL-low .225 since the All-Star break.
This loss came from an unlikely source. For only the fourth time this season, Cordero let the Brewers down in a save situation.
Pirates 8, Mets 4
NEW YORK (AP) - Josh Phelps capped a five-run sixth inning with a two-run homer, then added an RBI double in the seventh to help the Pirates win for just the second time in 12 games since the All-Star break.
Left-hander Paul Maholm (7-12) won for the third time in four starts, limiting the Mets to three runs and six hits over six-plus innings.
Mets starter Oliver Perez (9-7) protected a 1-0 lead for five innings, dominating a Pittsburgh team that is next-to-last in the NL in runs. He retired 11 straight batters over a stretch that included four consecutive strikeouts, but then made a big error that cost him.
He ran into trouble in the sixth when Nate McLouth opened with a broken-bat single. Maholm faked a bunt and then beat out a chopper to shortstop. Cesar Itzuris sacrificed, and when Perez threw the ball away, McLouth scored the tying run.
Dodgers 5, Rockies 4
DENVER (AP) - Brad Penny scattered five hits over six innings before leaving with an abdominal cramp and Rafael Furcal hit a two-run homer for the Dodgers.
Penny (13-1) was taken out of the game after hurting himself as he beat out an infield single in the seventh inning. He hunched over after he reached first base and the trainers sprinted out to examine him. Penny was led off the field.
Takashi Saito pitched the ninth for his 26th save in 29 chances, striking out Matt Holliday with a runner on to end it. Saito had missed the previous seven games because of a sore right shoulder.
Rodrigo Lopez (5-4) went 6 2-3 innings, giving up five hits and three earned runs. He was taken out after striking out Matt Kemp in the seventh with tightness in his right forearm.
Astros 7, Padres 1
HOUSTON (AP) - Carlos Lee, Morgan Ensberg and Craig Biggio hit home runs, and Wandy Rodriguez allowed one run in seven innings to send the Astros to their fifth win in seven games.
It was Biggio's second home run in three games since announcing his retirement.
Rodriguez (7-9) allowed a run and five hits to improve to 6-2 with a 1.76 ERA at home. The left-hander is 1-7 with a 7.43 ERA on the road.
Lance Berkman added two doubles four Houston, which has won 13 of its last 18 at home.
David Wells (5-7) lasted only three innings and gave up seven runs and seven hits with four walks. Wells matched his season high for runs allowed, previously set in his last start against Philadelphia.
Cardinals 11, Cubs 1
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Albert Pujols snapped an 0-for-11 slump with a three-run homer, Chris Duncan added a grand slam and the Cardinals routed the Cubs.
Pujols drove in five runs, tying his season high set June 10 against the Los Angeles Angels.
Chicago starter Jason Marquis (7-6) allowed six runs in five innings. He walked four and struck out just one. Marquis had beaten his former teammates in two earlier starts this season.
St. Louis scored five runs on two hits in the fifth for a 6-0 lead. Aaron Miles led off with a single and Marquis walked St. Louis starter Braden Looper, who was trying to bunt. After a sacrifice bunt advanced the runners, Marquis walked Jim Edmonds. With the bases loaded, Marquis hit Pujols to score Miles. Duncan followed, hitting a 2-2 pitch for his 20th homer and his second grand slam of the season.
Looper (8-8) gave up a run and five hits in seven innings to win for the second time in three starts.
Diamondbacks 7, Marlins 4
PHOENIX (AP) - Eric Byrnes hit a three-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning to give the Diamondbacks a four-game sweep of the Marlins.
Arizona won its sixth in a row to climb into second place in the NL West, 1 1/2 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Tony Pena (5-2) pitched two hitless innings for the victory.
Miguel Montero opened the Arizona ninth with a single up the middle off Armando Benitez (2-6). Montero went to second on Scott Hairston's pinch-hit sacrifice bunt, then took third on a wild pitch. After Orlando Hudson struck out, Byrnes hit an 0-2 pitch over the fence in left.
The odd game featured five hit batters.
Arizona starter Micah Owings and pinch hitter Conor Jackson each had a two-run home run, the Diamondbacks' only hits through the first seven innings. Still, it was tied 4-4.
 

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