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Thome bashes homer No. 400

Posted: Tuesday, June 15, 2004

PHILADELPHIA (AP) While Ken Griffey Jr. decided to wait at least another day to try for a milestone homer, Jim Thome hit his 400th to help the Philadelphia Phillies to a 10-7 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night.

The game was stopped three times by rain, with delays totaling 3 hours, 54 minutes, and ended at 2:06 on Tuesday morning. The game was called with Billy Wagner taking warmup tosses in the ninth.

Ryan Madson (4-1) earned the win and John Riedling (4-1) lost both in relief. The Phillies used seven pitchers; the Reds six. There were 13 hits by each team.

A smattering of fans got soaked as they hung out near the dugouts during the final delay. Stadium workers draped in ponchos were already cleaning the aisles before the game was called.

It was an odd ending to a night that started with plenty of buzz over the chance for Thome and Griffey to both get milestone homers. Griffey, however, was out of the lineup, giving him a better chance to hit his 500th home run at home in Cincinnati.

The sellout crowd of 44,710 the largest ever at Philadelphia's new ballpark booed when they heard Ryan Freel introduced as Cincinnati's starting center fielder. Their disappointment didn't last long.

Flashbulbs popped all over the park on every pitch as Thome dug in against starter Jose Acevedo. Fans gasped on several foul balls, thinking each swing would be the one.

Thome battled back from an 0-2 count to get it to 3-2, then crushed a two-run blast in the first inning to become the 37th player to join the 400 club.

Thome pumped his right fist as he rounded first base and pointed to the crowd. He was mobbed by teammates when he reached home plate. The fans gave Thome a standing ovation and he emerged from the dugout for a curtain call shortly before Pat Burrell followed with a solo shot.

Cubs 7, Astros 2

HOUSTON Mark Prior pitched five shutout innings in his third start since coming off the DL and Todd Walker homered twice, ending Roger Clemens' unbeaten start with a win over the Houston Astros.

Prior (1-1) allowed only five hits and struck out eight, denying his childhood idol a chance to become the first pitcher in the big leagues with 10 wins.

Walker went 4-for-5 with homers in the sixth and ninth and a triple in the third. He also scored four runs. Aramis Ramirez and Moises Alou also homered.

American League

CLEVELAND Jake Westbrook pitched a four-hitter for his first major league shutout and the Cleveland Indians trounced the Baltimore Orioles 14-0 Monday for their fourth straight win.

Cleveland scored seven runs in the third inning and six more in the fifth to hand the Orioles their sixth loss in nine games.

John McDonald, getting a rare start and batting only .107, got a career-high four hits and Lou Merloni had two of the Indians' eight doubles.



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