Cardinals take back NL Central lead from Astros

Posted: Sunday, October 07, 2001

ST. LOUIS -- Jim Edmonds homered and had three RBIs as the St. Louis Cardinals regained the NL Central lead by defeating the Houston Astros 10-6 Saturday.

While both teams clinched postseason berths when San Francisco lost late Friday night, the division title will go down to the final day, with the winner of Sunday's game winning the Central.

St. Louis (93-68) took a one-game lead over Houston (92-69), which leads the season series 8-7. If the Astros win Sunday, when the Cardinals' Darryl Kile (16-10) pitches against Shane Reynolds (13-11), the teams would finish with identical records and Houston would win the division title because of a better head-to-head record.

The NL Central winner starts the playoffs at home Tuesday against Atlanta and the wild card opens Tuesday at Arizona.

Craig Biggio hit a three-run homer that put the Astros ahead 5-3 in the fourth inning.

Edmonds hit his 30th homer, a two-run shot in the eighth of Mike Williams.

Dodgers 6, Giants 2

SAN FRANCISCO -- With new home run king Barry Bonds out of the starting lineup, James Baldwin pitched seven shutout innings and added an RBI double as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants.

Bonds, who hit his record 71st and 72nd homers Friday night, singled as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning. He then left for a pinch-runner, and many fans also exited.

The Giants were eliminated from postseason contention Friday night with an 11-10 loss to the Dodgers. The 4-hour, 27-minute game, baseball's longest nine-inning contest, did not end until after midnight and was followed by a ceremony honoring Bonds that went on until nearly 1 a.m.

Baldwin (3-6), who gave up three hits, had lost his previous four decisions. His last win was Aug. 23 in Florida.

Jeff Shaw got one out for his 43rd save.

The Dodgers went up 1-0 in the first inning on Gary Sheffield's RBI grounder off Livan Hernandez (13-15).

Padres 10, Rockies 4

SAN DIEGO -- Rickey Henderson pulled within one hit of 3,000 with one day left in the season, and Phil Nevin had his first three-homer game, including a grand slam, as the San Diego Padres beat the Colorado Rockies.

Henderson, the Padres' flamboyant leadoff hitter, doubled down the left-field line on the first pitch of the first inning for No. 2,999, then made four straight outs.

Henderson is trying to become the 25th member of the 3,000-hit club.

Nevin has 41 homers, moving into second place on the Padres' single-season list.

Wiki Gonzalez added a two-run homer, chasing Scott Elarton (4-10), and Gwynn's double made it 8-4.

Brian Tollberg (10-4) joined Kevin Jarvis as the only Padres with double-digit wins this season.

Cubs 13, Pirates 2

CHICAGO -- Julian Tavarez took a no-hitter into the eighth inning, Sammy Sosa hit his 63rd homer and Roosevelt Brown had seven RBIs to lead the Chicago Cubs over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Tavarez (10-9) was five outs from the Cubs' first no-hitter in 29 years when Mendy Lopez hit a two-run single in the eighth. Tavarez allowed two runs, one hit and five walks in 7 1-3 innings, striking out a career-high nine and hitting two batters.

Sosa hit his first inside-the-park homer since May 26, 1997, a third-inning fly ball that right fielder Larry Mackowiak lost in the sun and allowed to fall behind him. Sosa also hit a two-run double, giving him 158 RBIs -- which matched his career high -- and 144 runs.

Fred McGriff added a solo shot for the Cubs, who dealt Pittsburgh its 100th loss of the year.

Brown's homer off Tony McKnight (3-6) gave the Cubs the lead in the first. Brown homered again in a six-run eighth.

Phillies 2, Reds 1, 1st game

Phillies 5, Reds 1, 2nd game

CINCINNATI -- Marlon Anderson went 5-for-5 with three doubles as the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Reds, completing a doubleheader sweep that pushed Cincinnati's home-field misery to record depths.

The Phillies won the opener behind Omar Daal, who pitched seven shutout innings while stewing that he didn't get to pitch in a more meaningful game.

The Phillies got their first sweep in Cincinnati since May 26, 1963.

It became an historic day for the Reds, finishing off their worst season since 1982. The sweep left them 27-53 at Cinergy Field, the most home losses in their 133-year history.

Anderson matched his career high with five hits in the second game, including doubles in each of his last three at-bats. David Coggin (6-7) gave up one run in seven innings.

Jimmy Rollins hit his 14th homer off Joey Hamilton (1-2) to tie it at 1 in the third.

In the opener, the Reds got only three hits in seven innings off Daal (13-7), who was still fuming that manager Larry Bowa skipped over him for a decisive series in Atlanta last week. Jose Mesa got his 41st save.

Elmer Dessens (10-14) took the loss.

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