NL roundup: Sheffield joins 500-homer club

NEW YORK (AP) " Gary Sheffield joined the 500-homer club, and Luis Castillo drove in the winning run with a two-out single in the ninth inning, giving the New York Mets a 5-4 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night.

Ryan Braun hit a three-run homer to give Milwaukee a 4-3 lead in the sixth before Sheffield connected off Mitch Stetter, who was facing his first batter in relief of Dave Bush. The nine-time All-Star was on as a pinch hitter and sent a full-count pitch an estimated 385 feet for his first hit of the season for the Mets.

After squandering a bases-loaded opportunity in the eighth, Carlos Delgado doubled off Seth McClung (0-1) to start the ninth. Delgado scored on Castillo's single to short, when a diving J.J. Hardy couldn't deliver the throw home in time.

New York's revamped bullpen gave up just one hit over the final four innings, with J.J. Putz (1-0) pitching a perfect ninth for his first win with the Mets.

Cubs 8, Cardinals 7

CHICAGO (AP) - After striking out three times earlier in the game, Alfonso Soriano hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning to rally Chicago past St. Louis.

It was the second game-winning homer in a week for Soriano, who sent a 1-2 pitch from Chris Perez (0-1) into the left-field bleachers.

The Cardinals, losing for the second time in nine games, couldn't score the tying run after Carlos Marmol walked Colby Rasmus and hit Albert Pujols with a pitch to start the ninth. Ryan Ludwick, who had hit two home runs, struck out, and pinch-hitter Khalil Greene grounded into a game-ending double play.

Aaron Heilman (2-0) got the victory with one scoreless inning of relief.

Pirates 3, Braves 0

PITTSBURGH (AP) " Paul Maholm combined with two relievers on a six-hitter and Pittsburgh handed Atlanta its fourth straight loss.

Maholm (2-0) pitched seven innings, allowing four hits. The left-hander, who worked around three walks, two hit batters and a balk, lowered his ERA to 0.87 in winning his first home start of the season.

John Grabow allowed two hits in the eighth inning, and Matt Capps pitched a perfect ninth for his third save.

Nate McLouth hit a two-run homer and Freddy Sanchez added two hits for Pittsburgh.

Jair Jurrjens (2-1) struck out seven in 6 2-3 innings for Atlanta, allowing one run and four hits.

Padres 8, Phillies 7

PHILADELPHIA (AP) " Scott Hairston homered and hit a go-ahead two-run double in the eighth inning, helping San Diego overcome a six-run deficit.

The World Series champion Phillies honored legendary broadcaster Harry Kalas in a moving ceremony before the game. The Hall of Fame announcer died Monday in Washington after collapsing in the broadcast booth before a game against the Nationals. He was 73.

Chase Utley, one of Kalas' favorite players, hit a three-run homer, but the Phillies got another shaky outing from Cole Hamels and setup man Ryan Madson (0-1) gave up three runs in the eighth.

Luis Rodriguez and Nick Hundley also homered for the Padres, who got a poor outing from Chris Young.

Cla Meredith (2-0) pitched a scoreless seventh to earn the win. Duaner Sanchez worked the eighth and Heath Bell finished for his sixth save.

Marlins 3, Nationals 2, 10 innings

WASHINGTON (AP) " Jeremy Hermida hit an RBI infield single in the 10th inning to lift Florida to its fifth straight win.

Florida's 9-1 record marks the best start in franchise history, topping the 1997 and 2004 Marlins who both opened 8-1.

Jorge Cantu got the decisive rally started with a two-out single off Saul Rivera (0-2) and moved to third on Dan Uggla's bloop hit to right. Hermida hit a grounder deep in the hole at shortstop, and Alberto Gonzalez's only play was a late throw to first.

Leo Nunez (1-0) pitched a scoreless ninth. Matt Lindstrom worked the 10th for his second save, getting three outs after allowing a leadoff double to Elijah Dukes.

Reds 2, Astros 1

HOUSTON (AP) " Ramon Hernandez hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning to lift Cincinnati.

Jose Valverde (0-1), who missed Thursday's game with a back strain, walked Edwin Encarnacion with one out in the ninth before Hernandez hit his first homer over the right-field fence. It was Valverde's first blown save of the year.

Nick Masset (1-0) pitched 1 1-3 scoreless innings to get the win and Francisco Cordero got three outs for his third save in three attempts.

Giants 2, Diamondbacks 0

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) " Jonathan Sanchez pitched 6 2-3 solid innings, Andres Torres homered and San Francisco snapped a six-game losing streak.

Sanchez (1-1) allowed just two hits and struck out four. He walked four but didn't allow a runner past second base.

Jeremy Affeldt, Bob Howry and Brian Wilson finished the three-hitter. Wilson recorded the final four outs for his first save of the season.

Dan Haren (0-3) struck out six and allowed just one run in six sharp innings, but remains winless in three starts. The Diamondbacks have been shut out twice this season, both times with the hard-luck right-hander on the mound.

Dodgers 4, Rockies 3

LOS ANGELES (AP) " Mark Loretta capped a four-run seventh inning with a go-ahead RBI single, and Los Angeles beat Colorado for its sixth straight victory.

Jorge De La Rosa pitched 5 1-3 scoreless innings for the Rockies, allowing five hits and departing with a 3-0 lead after walking two batters in the sixth. Glendon Rusch got pinch-hitter James Loney to ground into an inning-ending double play, but the defending NL West champions pulled ahead one inning later.

Alan Embree (0-1) gave up a run-scoring grounder to Matt Kemp and and RBI double to Andre Ethier.

Guillermo Mota (1-0) pitched a scoreless seventh inning for the victory. Jonathan Broxton got the last five outs for his fourth save.


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