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Castilla belts three homers as Pirates, Astros split doubleheader

Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2001

PITTSBURGH -- Brian Giles' grand slam capped a seven-run ninth inning that gave Pittsburgh a 9-8 win in the opener of a day-night doubleheader Saturday, but the Houston Astros rebounded to win the nightcap 12-3 behind Jeff Bagwell's three RBIs.

Vinny Castilla homered three times for Houston in the first game, and the Pirates trailed 8-2 with two outs and nobody on in the ninth before rallying for a stunning victory.

Castilla nearly tied a major league record with four homers, but Giles robbed him with a leaping catch at the left-field wall in the fourth inning.

Giles' grand slam came off Billy Wagner (2-4), who blew his second save in 26 chances -- snapping his streak of successful conversions at 18. Houston had been 49-0 when leading after eight innings.

Omar Olivares (5-7) got the win despite allowing four runs and five hits in two innings.

Bagwell went 3-for-4 with two doubles and scored three runs in the second game as the Astros roughed up Pirates starter Jimmy Anderson (6-10).

Tony McKnight (1-0), called up from the minors to make the start for Houston, held the Pirates to two runs on nine hits in seven innings.

Cardinals 7, Cubs 4

CHICAGO -- In shades of the 1998 home run race, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa both homered as St. Louis beat Chicago.

It was McGwire's 571st homer, leaving him two behind Harmon Killebrew for fifth place on the career list. He's homered in six of his last 10 games to give him 17 this season. Each of his last seven hits have been homers.

Sosa's homer off Dave Veres (1-1) was his 35th of the season and 392nd as a Cub, tying him for second place on the team's career list with Billy Williams.

Placido Polanco had a go-ahead RBI single in the eighth, and rookie Albert Pujols, who also hit his 25th homer, followed with a two-run double for the Cardinals.

Mike Fyhrie (0-2) took the loss. Cubs starter Kerry Wood gave up three runs and nine hits in six innings.

Mets 4, Phillies 3

NEW YORK -- Turk Wendell, pitching for Philadelphia one day after being traded by the Mets, gave up a game-winning homer to Robin Ventura in the ninth inning as New York beat the Phillies.

Wendell (4-4) and fellow reliever Dennis Cook were sent to the Phillies for minor league pitchers Bruce Chen and Adam Walker after Friday night's game, also won by the Mets.

Tomas Perez homered for Philadelphia, and Benny Agbayani went deep for New York.

Armando Benitez (4-3) pitched a scoreless ninth for the win.

Dodgers 10, Rockies 6

LOS ANGELES -- Jeff Reboulet and Shawn Green each homered and had three hits as Los Angeles sent Mike Hampton to his earliest exit of the season.

The Dodgers staked Chan Ho Park (11-6) to a 6-0 lead after two innings and increased the margin to 10-4 with a four-run third.

Reboulet drove in four runs, Green had three RBIs, and Marquis Grissom also homered for the NL West leaders, who have won 13 of 15. Jeff Shaw got his 32nd save.

Hampton (10-8) allowed nine runs, nine hits and two homers in 2 1-3 innings. The two-time All-Star is 1-5 with an 8.58 ERA in nine starts since June 10.

Colorado's Todd Helton reached the 30-homer mark for the third straight year.

Braves 10, Expos 5

MONTREAL -- Ken Caminiti homered twice and had four RBIs, and Tom Glavine won his fourth straight decision for Atlanta.

Caminiti homered for the third straight game, connecting off Javier Vazquez (9-10) to lead off the sixth and break a 3-all tie.

Caminiti chased Vazquez with a three-run shot in the seventh -- giving him four homers in three games, and five since joining the Braves on July 5 -- to cap a four-run inning.

Chipper Jones had four RBIs and three of Atlanta's 13 hits. He hit RBI singles in the third and seventh inning, and a two-run homer in the ninth.

Atlanta increased its lead in the NL East to two games over Philadelphia.

Glavine (10-5) allowed five hits and three runs in seven innings.

Reds 5, Marlins 0

CINCINNATI -- Ken Griffey Jr. homered, and Dmitri Young hit a grand slam for Cincinnati.

Elmer Dessens (7-8) pitched a six-hitter for his first career shutout as the Reds got a breakthrough win at Cinergy Field, where they've won only 15 of 52 this season.

The Reds got their first consecutive victories on a homestand and clinched only their second series win at home all season. They also won their opening series against Pittsburgh.

The Marlins have dropped 11 of 15 road games, falling to 20-33 overall away from Miami.

Brad Penny (7-5) lost his fourth consecutive start.

Padres 6, Brewers 2

MILWAUKEE -- Phil Nevin homered twice, including a grand slam, to back Woody Williams as San Diego snapped a three-game losing streak.

It was Nevin's second grand slam this season and third of his career. Nevin added a solo homer, his 29th, in the ninth. Bubba Trammell also homered for the Padres.

Williams (8-8) allowed two runs and five hits in 7 2-3 innings. Trevor Hoffman got four outs for his 24th save in 26 opportunities.

Allen Levrault (4-6) took the loss.

Diamondbacks 11, Giants 4

PHOENIX -- Rich Aurilia homered twice and tied his career-high with five RBIs as the San Francisco Giants routed the Arizona Diamondbacks for the third straight game, winning Saturday night.

Barry Bonds went 2-for-3 with two walks after hitting three homers in the first two games of the series. Bonds has matched Mark McGwire's record homer pace from 1998, hitting 45 in his team's first 105 games.

Aurilia hit a two-run shot in the fifth inning off Albie Lopez (0-1), who was making his first National League start after being acquired Wednesday from Tampa Bay.

Aurilia keyed a six-run sixth with a three-run blast off Greg Swindell.

Aurilia has four homers in the past three games giving him 20 homers for the third straight season -- a franchise record for a shortstop. Alvin Dark is the only other Giants shortstop to hit 20 in a season, getting 23 in 1953 and 20 in 1954.

Marvin Benard had five hits and Armando Rios also homered for the Giants, who won their fourth straight to remain 4 1/2 games behind Los Angeles in the NL West race.

The Diamondbacks, who led the division for 62 days until their 9-5 loss to the Giants on Friday, dropped 1 1/2 games behind the Dodgers.

Lopez held Bonds without a homer by walking him two of the three times he faced him. But Bonds tripled and scored on one of Andres Galarraga's two RBIs. Lopez allowed seven runs and 10 hits in 5 1-3 innings.

Russ Ortiz (12-6) won for the fourth time in his last five starts, baffling everyone in Arizona's lineup except David Dellucci.

Dellucci drove in four runs with a single and three-run homer, tying his career-high. Ortiz gave up four runs and eight hits in six innings.

Aurilia's first homer sent San Francisco to a 4-1 lead in the fifth. In the sixth, Ramon Martinez and Marvin Benard had RBIs before Aurilia homered into the swimming pool in right center.

Galarraga added a run-scoring double before Bret Prinz, the second Arizona reliever, got the third out.

Notes: The Giants have hit 11 homers in first three games of the series and lead the majors with 39 in July. The Dodgers are next with 37. ... Starting with a walk in his last at-bat Thursday, Bonds reached base nine consecutive times -- four hits and five walks -- until Swindell struck him out in the sixth inning. ... Aurilia has three career multihomer games. ... The first 15,000 fans got a Luis Gonzalez bobblehead doll, and the gimmick helped attract a season-high crowd of 47,570 to Bank One Ballpark. ... Lopez is the third Diamondbacks pitcher who attended high school in the Phoenix area, joining Curt Schilling and Prinz.



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