Roger Clemens, out of retirement, won his seventh straight decision and struck out a season-high 11, leading the Houston Astros over the visiting Florida Marlins and Brad Penny, 6-1, last night in a rematch of World Series Game 4 starters.
Clemens (7-0) allowed only three hits, including a solo homer to Ramon Castro, in seven innings to get his 317th win, one behind Phil Niekro for 14th on the career list.
Neither Clemens nor Penny got a decision in that World Series game. This time, Penny (3-2) took the loss, allowing two runs and five hits in 62/3 innings with five strikeouts.
"He never really went into retirement the way he threw," Marlins Manager Jack McKeon said of Clemens. "Thank goodness we won't see him again until the playoffs."
Clemens, who moved into second place on the career strikeout list when he beat Pittsburgh last week, raised his total to 4,151, second to Nolan Ryan's 5,714.
* CUBS 7, DODGERS 3: Chicago ace Kerry Wood gave up second-inning homers to Adrian Beltre and rookie Jason Grabowski before hurting his arm, and host Los Angeles went on to win its fifth straight.
Wood, who struck out more than 200 batters in each of the previous three seasons after undergoing reconstructive elbow surgery in April 1999, didn't come out for the third inning because of tightness in his triceps.
* CARDINALS 5, BRAVES 1: Woody Williams, an 18-game winner last year, won for the first time in seven starts this season with eight strong innings in St. Louis.
Mike Matheny drove in two runs without a hit, getting RBI on a bases-loaded groundout in the second and a squeeze bunt in the sixth. A third run scored for St. Louis when Williams's two-out grounder in the second scooted between first baseman Adam LaRoche's legs for an error.
* BREWERS 8, EXPOS 5: Milwaukee overcame a five-run deficit in the ninth inning at home, and Wes Helms hit a three-run homer off T.J. Tucker in the 14th.
Helms, who hadn't driven in a run since April 10, ended a 4-hour 20-minute game with a drive to left-center off Tucker (0-1).
Dave Burba (3-1) pitched one scoreless inning for the win.
With Milwaukee down to its last out in the ninth, six straight Brewers reached base to force extra innings.
* DIAMONDBACKS 9, METS 5: In Phoenix, Steve Finley hit a grand slam and Shea Hillenbrand went 3 for 5 with a home run and four RBI.
The two-out slam off Mike Stanton's 0-2 pitch was the ninth of Finley's 16-year career, and first in three seasons.
Hillenbrand fell a triple shy of the cycle. He hit a three-run home run off Al Leiter in the first, added an RBI double in the third and singled in the fifth.
* PHILLIES 10, GIANTS 4: Kevin Millwood shut down host San Francisco in his first start against the Giants since no-hitting them last year.
Chase Utley had two hits with a double and an RBI in his first start since being recalled from Class AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre on Saturday. Marlon Byrd hit a three-run triple and Pat Burrell had three hits, scored twice and drove in a run as the Phillies had 15 hits in their fourth straight win.
* REDS 6, PADRES 3: Adam Dunn tied for the major league lead with his 11th home run and Ken Griffey Jr. also connected to lead Cincinnati to a road victory.
San Diego native Aaron Harang (3-1) allowed three runs and five hits in six innings, beating David Wells (2-3).