National League roundup

Braves 9, Cardinals 2

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Javier Vazquez took a shutout into the ninth inning, and the Atlanta Braves roughed up Chris Carpenter in a 9-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

Vazquez allowed a leadoff single to Skip Schumaker and then retired the next 17 batters before Schumaker reached on an infield single in the sixth. It was the 25th complete game of Vazquez's career and his second of the season.

Vazquez (13-9) has won his last three decisions. He stuck out eight while walking none. He threw just 94 pitches.

Carpenter (16-4) had his worst outing of the season. He allowed seven earned runs on nine hits in six innings pitched.

Giants 7, Dodgers 2

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Brad Penny kept his emotions in check and pitched seven strong innings to beat his former club, Juan Uribe hit a two-run homer and the Giants avoided a sweep by with a victory over the first-place Dodgers.

Los Angeles' lead in the NL West remained at three over Colorado after the Rockies lost again at San Diego. The Giants moved within 41/2 games of Colorado in the NL wild-card race.

Uribe had three hits, as did Travis Ishikawa, who added an RBI double for San Francisco, which ended a four-game home losing streak.

Penny (3-0) has a perfect record since signing with the Giants on Aug. 31 - after he lost his final four decisions with the Red Sox before they released him.

Chad Billingsley (12-10) saw his winless stretch reach five starts, going 0-4 during that span since beating St. Louis on Aug. 18.

Phillies 5-4, 1st Game

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Kyle Kendrick pitched into the eighth inning and Shane Victorino and Ben Francisco each homered, leading the Phillies over the Mets in the opener of a day-night doubleheader.

Brad Lidge, who was temporarily demoted from his Phillies closer role this week, gave up two runs in the ninth but finished for his 29th save in 39 opportunities. Ryan Madson had blown the save in Saturday's loss to the Mets.

Making his first Phillies start of the season, Kendrick (1-1) lasted until surrendering a two-run homer to Anderson Hernandez with one out in the eighth inning.

New York right-hander John Maine (5-5) made his first start since June 6. He gave up an RBI double to Ryan Howard in the first of his three innings. He threw 57 pitches and gave up two hits.

Padres 7, Rockies 3

SAN DIEGO (AP) - Tony Gwynn drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in a three-run sixth inning, lifting San Diego to a win over Jason Marquis and the Rockies.

Marquis (15-11) carried a 3-2 lead into the sixth when San Diego rallied. Marquis walked four batters in the inning, including one with the bases loaded.

The Rockies lead in the wild-card race fell to 41/2 games after the Giants beat the Dodgers.

Adam Russell (1-0) pitched an inning of scoreless relief as five San Diego pitchers combined on five-hitter.

Marquis allowed five runs on eight hits in 5 2-3 innings.

Pirates 2, Astros 1

HOUSTON (AP) - Paul Maholm pitched eight shutout innings and Pittsburgh snapped a 13-game road losing streak.

Ryan Doumit homered and Garrett Jones had an RBI single for the last-place Pirates, who had dropped five in a row overall.

Maholm (8-8), who lost four of his previous five decisions, scattered six hits and two walks. He struck out two.

Matt Capps allowed Lance Berkman's leadoff homer in the ninth before earning his 25th save.

Felipe Paulino (2-9) lost his fifth straight decision. He went five innings and allowed one run on six hits and a walk. He struck out six.

Cubs 5, Reds 2

CHICAGO (AP) - Ted Lilly pitched six scoreless innings and Derrek Lee homered and singled twice, helping the Cubs beat the Reds.

Andres Blanco had three hits and two RBIs for the Cubs, who won the season series 10-5.

The Reds were officially eliminated from the NL Central race. They were 26-20 and 11/2 games out of first place on May 28 but are 38-58 since and have fallen 191/2 behind St. Louis.

Lilly (12-8) allowed six hits, walked two and struck out seven in winning his seventh consecutive home decision.

Homer Bailey (5-5) allowed three runs on nine hits in 5 1-3 innings, losing after a four-start stretch in which he went 3-0 with a 1.67 ERA.

Nationals 7, Marlins 2, 81/2 innings

MIAMI (AP) - John Lannan won for the first time in seven starts and Pete Orr hit his first home run of the season for Washington.

The game was called after a 53-minute delay in the bottom of the ninth inning. The Marlins had a runner on base with nobody out. Rain also halted play for 2 hours, 10 minutes in the sixth.

Lannan (9-11) allowed one run and six hits in five innings. He did not return after the first delay.

Florida starter Chris Volstad (9-12) gave up five runs - four earned - and five hits over three innings.

Brewers 5, Diamondbacks 3

PHOENIX (AP) - Prince Fielder homered to tie Milwaukee's single-season RBI record, Alcides Escobar had a two-run single in a four-run seventh inning and the Brewers completed a three-game sweep of Arizona.

Fielder's fourth-inning home run, his 39th of the season, gave him a major league-leading 126 RBIs and tied him with Cecil Cooper for the Brewers' franchise record. Cooper, Houston Astros' manager, set the mark in 1983.

Daniel Schlereth (0-4) was the loser.

Carlos Villanueva, the fourth of seven Milwaukee pitchers, retired all six batters he faced to improve to 3-10.

Trevor Hoffman got his 32nd save in 35 chances with a perfect ninth.


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