NEW YORK Matt Morris pitched effectively into the eighth inning, and John Mabry homered and drove in three runs to lead the St. Louis Cardinals over the New York Mets 4-2 Sunday.
Subbing at first base to give All-Star slugger Albert Pujols his first day off this season, Mabry also turned two nifty double plays to snuff out potential rallies.
Reggie Sanders hit his 10th home run for the NL Central-leading Cardinals, who took two of three at Shea Stadium and improved to 12-4 on the road.
Mike Cameron homered, doubled and scored both runs for the Mets, who lost for the fifth time in seven games following a four-game winning streak.
Morris (3-0) got cleanup batter Cliff Floyd on a popup with runners at the corners to end the sixth.
Aaron Heilman (3-3) took the loss.
Nationals 5, Cubs 4
WASHINGTON Chicago second baseman Neifi Perez's two errors helped Washington score the go-ahead run in the sixth, and Nick Johnson hit a two-run homer to lead the Nationals.
Johnson's homer came in the fifth off Greg Maddux, who walked the preceding batter, Jose Guillen, and complained about the landing area on the pitcher's mound.
It was Johnson's fifth homer and put Washington ahead 4-3.
That was the last inning for Maddux, who allowed four runs and seven hits.
Pirates 4, Brewers 2
PITTSBURGH Daryle Ward homered and drove in two runs, and Dave Williams repeatedly pitched out of trouble to lift Pittsburgh to its ninth victory in 12 games.
Ward homered in the second inning and added a run-scoring single in the fifth after Matt Lawton's leadoff double against Gary Glover (2-2), who saw the Brewers win his last four starts.
Phillies 4, Reds 3
PHILADELPHIA Vicente Padilla pitched six scoreless innings for his first win of the season and was backed by solo homers from Chase Utley and Bobby Abreu.
Padilla (1-4) tossed four-hit ball in his longest outing of the season to earn his first win since last Sept. 29. Padilla tied a career high with six walks, but he worked out of a couple of jams to help the Phillies split the four-game series.
Billy Wagner pitched the final 1 1-3 innings for his ninth save in 10 chances. The Reds added two runs in the ninth on Sean Casey's RBI single and a sacrifice fly by Ken Griffey Jr., but Wagner struck out Adam Dunn to end the game with the tying run on first.
Elizardo Ramirez (0-1) worked six innings in his first career start.
Diamondbacks 5, Rockies 4
DENVER Craig Counsell hit his first homer since last July and Brian Bruney converted a rare save opportunity to lead Arizona.
Counsell homered off Jason Jennings (1-5) in the seventh for a 4-3 lead. Alex Cintron had an RBI double, one of his two hits, to make it 5-3 in the eighth.
Bruney allowed a walk and a single in the ninth inning but retired Clint Barmes and Aaron Miles to earn his second save in three tries this season. He closed in place of Brandon Lyon, who is tied for the NL saves lead but was given the day off.
Braves 5, Dodgers 2
LOS ANGELES Chipper and Andruw Jones each homered for the second straight game, Tim Hudson pitched six innings, and Atlanta knocked the Dodgers out of first place for the first time since April 28.
The NL East-leading Braves won for the 10th time in 14 games. The Dodgers lost their fourth in five to fall one game behind Arizona in the NL West.
Andruw Jones gave the Braves a 3-2 lead in the seventh by hitting a full-count pitch from Wilson Alvarez (1-1) into the lower seats in the left-field corner for his third homer in two games..
Padres 12, Marlins 4
SAN DIEGO Dave Roberts hit a three-run homer, and Brian Giles added a two-run single in a 10-run seventh.
The Padres won for the 12th time in 16 games and swept the Marlins for the first time in a three-game series in San Diego. Khalil Greene had three hits, while Roberts and Giles each had three RBIs.
The Padres sent 13 batters to the plate in the seventh against starter A.J. Burnett and two relievers.
Astros 9, Giants 0
HOUSTON Morgan Ensberg hit three home runs and Brandon Backe pitched a four-hitter for his first major league shutout, leading the Houston Astros to a 9-0 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Sunday night.
Backe (3-2) didn't allow an extra-base hit while throwing 114 pitches in the first shutout by a Houston pitcher since Roy Oswalt against Montreal last Aug. 6.
Peninsula Clarion ©2015. All Rights Reserved.