CINCINNATI (AP) -Paul Lo Duca hit a pair of three-run homers and drove in a career-high seven runs Tuesday night, powering the New York Mets to their fifth straight victory, 11-7 over the Cincinnati Reds.
The NL East leaders have regained control of their division with their longest winning streak of the season. A balanced offense has led the way, piling up 46 runs in the last six games and reaching double-digits three times.
No matter who the Reds put on the mound, the Mets hit him. Hard.
Lo Duca got it started with his three-run homer in the second inning off Matt Belisle, a drive that was caught by a fan wearing a white Mets jersey in the front row behind the left-field wall.
After falling behind 5-3, the Mets sent nine batters to the plate for five runs in the sixth inning, a rally started by Carlos Beltran's two-run homer. Shawn Green added a two-run double off reliever Bill Bray (3-2) during the comeback, and Lo Duca finished it with an RBI single.
Oliver Perez (13-9) get the victory on an off-night. Perez lasted only five innings, walked five and gave up five runs.
Phillies 5, Braves 2
ATLANTA (AP) - Ryan Howard hit his 37th homer, and Kyle Lohse quieted the Braves' offense to help the Phillies end a three-game losing streak.
Howard, the 2006 NL MVP, made it 2-0 in the first with his 15th career homer off the Braves and sixth at Turner Field.
Chipper Jones hit his 23rd homer for Atlanta, which has lost four of five and 10 of 14.
With the win, the Phillies moved 3 1/2 games ahead of the Braves in the wild-card race and remained five games behind the New York Mets in the NL East after the Mets beat the Reds. Philadelphia began the day three games behind Arizona.
Lohse (8-12) improved to 2-0 with a 4.06 ERA in seven starts since the Phillies acquired him from Cincinnati on July 30.
Buddy Carlyle (8-6) lasted just 1 2-3 innings, giving up four hits, three runs and three walks in the shortest start of his career.
Nationals 4, Marlins 3
WASHINGTON (AP)- Jesus Flores' two-run, ninth-inning double gave the Nationals a win over the Marlins.
With the Nationals trailing 3-2 in the ninth inning, Dmitri Young led off with a walk off Kevin Gregg (0-5). With one out, Wily Mo Pena singled to third and pinch-runner Ryan Langerhans advanced to third. After Ronnie Belliard popped to first, Flores doubled to the left-field corner, scoring Langerhans and Pena.
It was Gregg's third blown save of the year.
A fifth-inning single gave Miguel Cabrera his 500th career RBI and the Marlins a 3-2 lead. Cabrera became the third-youngest player in major-league history to reach 500 RBIs.
Flores' hit spoiled Dontrelle Willis' opportunity to win just his second game in 18 starts. He has one win since May 29.
Chris Schroder (2-1) pitched a hitless inning for the victory.
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