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National League Game Capsules (Sunday, August 28th)
Final Score: Cincinnati 5, Washington 4 (14 innings)
Cincinnati, OH (Sports Network) - Joey Votto smacked his second solo homer of the game leading off the 14th inning, lifting the Reds to a 5-4 victory and three-game sweep of the Nationals on Sunday. Votto, who homered almost five hours earlier in the first inning, reached out to poke Collin Balester's 3-2 fastball over the left field wall for his 26th homer of the season. Earlier, Yonder Alonso homered to lead off the ninth inning, tying the game at 4-4 for the Reds after they had coughed up a lead by allowing the Nationals to score once in the eighth and ninth. Cincinnati swept the Nationals for the first time since taking four straight from July 3-6, 2008. Washington has lost a season high-tying six straight games. The Nationals were 4-for-20 with runners in scoring position and are just 6-for-54 in their last four games. Jay Bruce also had a solo homer for the Reds, who improved to 12-5 in their last 17 games and moved above .500 (67-66) for the first time since they were 43-42 on July 3.
Final Score: Milwaukee 3, Chicago 2
Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) - Zack Greinke allowed one run in 7 2/3 innings and Corey Hart belted a two-run homer, lifting the NL Central-leading Brewers over the Cubs, 3-2, to complete a three-game sweep. Greinke (13-5) was effective just six days after tying a season-high by allowing seven earned runs in a loss at Pittsburgh. He held Chicago to four hits, struck out seven and walked two while adding a single and a steal before scoring on Hart's blast to left field in the fifth. John Axford yielded a one-out, solo homer to Tyler Colvin in the ninth, then put the tying run in scoring position before holding on for his 40th save and the Brewers' 50th home win. Milwaukee improved to 21-5 in August, tying the franchise mark for most wins in a single month. The club can break the mark originally set in June of 1978 with a win in Tuesday's opener of a three-game set against the Cardinals. Casey Coleman (2-7) was touched for three runs on six hits over seven innings for Chicago, which has dropped four straight and seven of eight overall.
Final Score: St. Louis 7, Pittsburgh 4
St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - Skip Schumaker and Ryan Theriot both had two hits and drove in two, helping the Cardinals to a 7-4 victory and series win against the Pirates. Allen Craig's sacrifice fly in the fourth plated the go- ahead run, while Kyle Lohse (12-8) allowed four runs -- two earned -- in five innings to pick up his 100th major league victory. The Cardinals won three of the four games in the series, and rebounded from Saturday's 7-0 loss. Pirates starter Jeff Karstens (9-8) gave up five runs in 3 2/3 innings to take the loss, Pittsburgh's sixth in its last nine games.
Final Score: Houston 4, San Francisco 3 (11 innings)
San Francisco, CA (Sports Network) - Matt Downs drove in the game-winning run in the 11th inning, lifting the Astros over the Giants, 4-3, to earn a four- game series split. Mark Melancon blew a chance to finish off the win in the bottom of the 10th, and rookie David Carpenter plunked the leadoff hitter in the 11th before retiring three straight to earn his first career save. Aubrey Huff went 2-for-4 and drove in a run for the Giants, who were trying to win three straight for the first time since July 17-19. San Francisco fell four games behind NL West-leading Arizona. Jason Michael doubled in Jimmy Paredes in the 10th inning to break a 2-2 tie, but Melancon (7-4) couldn't hold the lead in the bottom half.
Final Score: Arizona 6, San Diego 1
Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Ian Kennedy went seven strong innings and received support from an unlikely duo, as the Arizona Diamondbacks downed the San Diego Padres, 6-1, to complete a three-game sweep. Kennedy (17-4) allowed one run on six hits while fanning seven to become the National League's first 17-game winner this season. Collin Cowgill went 4-for-4 and belted his first major league home run while Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer, his first since being acquired by Arizona on Tuesday. The Diamondbacks have won nine straight home games, six in a row overall and lead the Giants by four games atop the NL West. Cory Luebke (5-7) allowed three runs on six hits over 5 1/3 innings to suffer the loss. He walked three and struck out five. Orlando Hudson hit a home run for the Padres, who have dropped four in a row.
Final Score: Colorado 7, Los Angeles 6
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Kevin Kouzmanoff went 2-for-4 with four RBI, as the Colorado Rockies avoided a three-game sweep with a 7-6 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Rockies scored five first-inning runs for starter Jhoulys Chacin (11-10), who allowed four runs on six hits over five- plus innings to earn the win. He walked five and struck out six. Carlos Gonzalez extended his hitting streak to 15 games with three hits for the Rockies, who have won six of eight. Nathan Eovaldi (1-2) surrendered five runs on six hits over four frames to suffer the loss. Tony Gwynn and Justin Sellers each had two hits and an RBI for the Dodgers, who saw their five-game win streak come to an end.