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NL: Rookie keeps Brewers grounded

By Associated Press
Published May 2, 2003

MILWAUKEE - Montreal manager Frank Robinson couldn't recall seeing anything like Zach Day's pitching performance Thursday.

The rookie right-hander pitched a three-hitter for his first career shutout and didn't allow a ball out of the infield until the seventh inning as the Expos completed a three-game sweep with a 5-0 victory over the Brewers on Thursday.

Two of the 31 batters who faced Day got the ball to the outfield. John Vander Wal flied out to left in the seventh and Keith Ginter singled to left in the ninth. Day recorded 21 groundball outs and five strikeouts.

Day went in getting nearly four groundball outs to every fly out, tops in the majors, but Robinson said he did not recall a pitcher having such a good ratio in a game.

"He didn't give up anything," said Robinson, a Hall of Fame player who broke into the majors with Cincinnati in 1956. "It was a dominating performance on his part. That's the only word I can put in there. He was in complete control of the game from start to finish."

The only other hits off Day were infield singles by pitcher Wayne Franklin in the third and Royce Clayton in the eighth. Day walked one in his eighth career start.

"As a sinkerball pitcher, that is one of the games you dream about," Day said.

The only runner to get past first for Milwaukee was Richie Sexson, who reached on Day's fielding error in the seventh and moved to second on a groundout. Day got Vander Wal to end the inning with a fly to leftfield.

CUBS 5, GIANTS 1 (10): Alex Gonzalez didn't need to hear that Chicago wanted to win for Dusty Baker; it was just known.

Gonzalez hit a three-run blast in the 10th for his second home run of the game, and Sammy Sosa followed with another shot as the visiting Cubs gave Baker a series win against his former team.

"Coming in, it was hard not to know," Gonzalez said. "We were aware of our surroundings. It was awesome."

After an error by third baseman Edgardo Alfonzo put two on with two outs in the 10th, Gonzalez connected off Tim Worrell for his second of the season. Sosa's 505th career homer made it 5-1.

BRAVES 8, ASTROS 7: Pinch-hitter Mark DeRosa came through with a two-run homer in the ninth and Atlanta completed a three-game sweep.

Andruw Jones also hit a two-run homer for the Braves, who have won five in a row, seven straight on the road and 14 of 16 overall after a 4-8 start.

Lance Berkman, breaking out of a seasonlong slump, tied a career high with six RBIs for Houston, including a three-run homer off former Astros pitcher Shane Reynolds in the first.

CARDINALS 6, METS 5 (10): Jim Edmonds homered off Scott Strickland with one out in the 10th as host St. Louis completed a three-game sweep.

The Central champion Cardinals, who won the first two games 13-3 and 13-4, moved two games above .500 for the first time since the opening week. New York has lost five in a row.

The Mets rallied from a 5-1 sixth-inning deficit with a run in the seventh and three in the eighth. Pinch-hitter Roberto Alomar tied it with a sacrifice fly off Dustin Hermanson.

PHILLIES 4, DODGERS 1: Bobby Abreu and Mike Lieberthal homered to back a solid outing by Brandon Duckworth for visiting Philadelphia.

Duckworth was charged with an unearned run and seven hits in five-plus innings, striking out seven and walking none.

Jose Mesa got three outs for his seventh save and 94th with the Phillies, tying Tug McGraw for third place on the team's career list.

REDS 7, ROCKIES 2: Jeff Austin took a shutout into the seventh in his second career start, and Aaron Boone and former Rays player Jose Guillen each hit two-run homers for visiting Cincinnati. The Reds won for the sixth time in eight games and posted their third straight series victory.

PIRATES 5, PADRES 2: Jack Wilson hit a three-run homer and Kip Wells pitched into the eighth as visiting Pittsburgh completed a three-game sweep. The Pirates went into the series having scored 11 in five straight losses, then outscored San Diego 20-9.

MARLINS 4, D'BACKS 3: Brian Banks homered leading off the eighth to lift visiting Florida. Banks, who entered in the seventh as a defensive replacement in leftfield, drove the second pitch from Oscar Villareal to center for his first home run.

[Last modified May 2, 2003, 02:31:39]


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