Sheets, Brewers defeat Astros

Posted: Friday, September 12, 2003

MILWAUKEE Ben Sheets once again beat Houston as the Milwaukee Brewers stopped a six-game losing streak, beating the NL Central-leading Astros 5-3.

The Astros stayed one game ahead of Chicago. St. Louis lost to Colorado 9-4 and remained 2 1/2 games behind Houston.

Houston had won three in a row and six of seven. The Astros finished 7-3 on their 11-day road trip.

Sheets (11-12) matched his career high for wins and defeated the Astros for the sixth straight time.

Sheets had lost five in a row overall, but stopped that skid by allowing three runs and eight hits in eight innings.

Dan Kolb pitched the ninth for his 17th save in 17 chances.

The Cubs' two-run rally in the ninth fell short. They stayed one game behind NL Central leader Houston.

The Expos won the series against Chicago 2-1 and finished their 22 ''home'' games in Hiram Bithorn Stadium with a 13-9 record.

Ohka (9-12) outpitched Mark Prior (15-6), and the Expos' bullpen barely held on.

Miguel Cairo hit a two-run homer for the Cardinals, who stayed 2 1/2 games behind Houston in the NL Central. St. Louis starts a three-game series at Houston on Friday night.

The Rockies are an NL-worst 17-33 since the All-Star break and have won only two of their last 11 games.

Jimenez, acquired by the Reds from the Chicago White Sox in July, followed bunt singles by Ray Olmedo and Tim Hummel with his sixth homer for Cincinnati and 13th this season.

The crowd of 20,479 joined several members of the Reds and Pirates in observing a moment of silence before the game as a tribute to the victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The Phillies pulled within a half-game of idle Florida in the NL wild-card race. Marlon Byrd finished 3-for-5, and Pat Burrell had two hits and two RBIs.

Brett Myers (14-7) went seven innings, allowing a two-run homer to pinch-hitter Matt Franco in the fifth. Myers won his third straight decision.

The 25-year-old left-hander struck out four, walked none and hit a batter in his fourth major league start. Capuano (2-3) was on the mound because Schilling has a sore neck.

Jose Valverde allowed one hit in the eighth, and Matt Mantei pitched a perfect ninth for his 23rd save as Los Angeles was held to just four hits.

Lockhart's hit off Tim Worrell helped the Padres avoid a three-game sweep against the NL West-leading Giants.

American League

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. Roy Halladay became the first 20-game winner in the majors this season, pitching a five-hitter that led the Toronto Blue Jays over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 3-1 Thursday.

Halladay (20-6) has seven complete games this year, including his past three starts. He beat the New York Yankees 8-1 on Sept. 1, then had a 10-inning, 1-0 shutout five days later over Detroit.

The 26-year-old righty's career-high streak of 23 scoreless innings ended when Tampa Bay scored an unearned run in the sixth.

Shannon Stewart and Denny Hocking each drove in two runs as the Twins salvaged a split of the key four-game series. The teams meet for a three-game set next week at the Metrodome.

Radke (12-10) gave up nine hits, walked none and struck out five in his third complete game this season. It was his fourth straight victory.

The Royals stayed 3 1/2 games back of first place in the AL Central.

Danys Baez (2-8) earned the win with a scoreless inning. Jason Grimsley (2-6) took the loss in a game delayed twice by rain.

Eric Byrnes and pinch-hitter Billy McMillon hit three-run homers, and Ramon Hernandez and Mark Ellis also homered as the A's wrapped up their next-to-last homestand of the regular season with an impressive power display in their 11th victory in 12 games at the Coliseum.

Nick Johnson and Bernie Williams added solo homers for the Yankees, who have won five straight to boost their AL East lead to four games.

The Mariners stayed 2 1/2 games behind first-place Oakland in the AL West and moved within 1 1/2 games of Boston for the wild card.

Meche (15-10) spent last season in the minors following two shoulder operations. The last major league pitcher to win more than 14 games after a two-year absence was Whitey Ford, who went 18-6 in 1953 for the New York Yankees.

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