Ortiz earns 100th major league win

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: Reliever Russ Ortiz of the Braves hit the century mark in a heated battle with the Pirates. Angel's Troy Percival got his 300th career save

AP , PITTSBURGHAP, CHICAGO

Fri, Jul 30, 2004 - Page 24

Russ Ortiz shut out Pittsburgh for seven innings to win his sixth in a row and Chipper Jones homered for Atlanta's only run off rookie Oliver Perez, leading the Braves past the Pirates 1-0 Wednesday.

The game matched two streaking pitchers in Ortiz and Perez, neither of whom had lost since June, and two of baseball's hottest teams -- the Braves have won 21 of 28, the Pirates 21 of 29.

Ortiz (12-6) earned his 100th major league victory and improved to 7-0 against Pittsburgh, despite allowing at least one baserunner in every inning.

"If you had told me I'd be able to get 100 wins in the big leagues, I didn't know how long I would even last," Ortiz said. "I just feel very fortunate."

The Pirates had nine hits off Ortiz and 11 overall, only to strand 11 runners after scoring 36 runs in their previous five games.

Perez (6-5) allowed Jones' 14th homer with one out in the fourth. He didn't allow a runner to reach second until Eli Marrero tripled in the ninth.

"When a guy's throwing as good as that kid [Perez] was, you hope for more but you know that may hold up," Braves manager Bobby Cox said. "I'm sure that was what Russ was thinking."

Expos 7, Mets 4

In Montreal, Tony Batista homered and drove in two runs, and Nick Johnson hit a go-ahead RBI double in the fifth inning to lift Montreal over New York.

Brian Schneider had two RBIs for the Expos, who have won six of seven.

T.J. Tucker (1-1) allowed one hit in a scoreless two-thirds of an inning, and Luis Ayala pitched a perfect eighth to extend his shutout streak to 23 1-3 innings. Chad Cordero got three outs for his 10th save in 11 opportunities.

Trailing 4-3 after blowing a three-run lead in the fifth, Montreal rallied in the fifth to chase Jae Seo (4-7).

Mike Piazza played first base and went 0-for-4 with a walk for the Mets in his first start since spraining his wrist on July 20.

Cardinals 11, Reds 10

In Cincinnati, Scott Rolen hit two of St. Louis' four homers, repeatedly blunting Cincinnati's comeback and sending the Reds to their eighth straight loss.

Jim Edmonds homered in all three games of the series sweep, which put the Cardinals 11 games up in the NL Central. St. Louis has gone 42-14 since May 27, digging out of a fifth-place hole.

The Cardinals have won 11 of 13 from the Reds -- including nine of 10 in July.

Cardinals right-hander Jeff Suppan, who hasn't lost on the road this season, walked a career-high 10 in 4 2-3 innings, helping the Reds recover from an 8-1 deficit.

Adam Dunn led off the fifth with his 28th homer, and Barry Larkin had a pinch-hit grand slam off Steve Kline that cut it to 8-7.

Cal Eldred (2-0) was awarded the victory for his two perfect innings. Jason Isringhausen allowed one run but got five outs for his 26th save.

St. Louis scored seven runs in 4 1-3 innings against Jose Acevedo (4-10), winless in six starts in July.

Rockies 5, Dodgers 4

In Denver, Aaron Miles hit a tiebreaking single off Guillermo Mota in the eighth inning and Jeromy Burnitz homered in his sixth straight home game to tie a team and leading Colorado over Los Angeles.

With the score tied at 4, Burnitz started off the winning rally against Mota (8-4) with a two-out double. Charles Johnson and pinch-hitter Mark Sweeney walked to load the bases before Miles punched a single between third base and shortstop for Colorado's fifth win in six games.

Steve Reed (2-2) allowed a run and two hits in two innings to earn the win. Los Angeles had a runner on second with one out after shortstop Royce Clayton's fielding error in the ninth, but Shawn Chacon got the final two outs for his 23rd save.

Adrian Beltre hit his 29th homer, and Olmedo Saenz hit a two-run shot for the NL West-leading Dodgers, who have lost consecutive games for the first time since June 25-26.

Jacque Jones hit a go-ahead single in the 10th inning right after Chicago shortstop Jose Valentin dropped his foul popup with two outs, and the Minnesota Twins beat the White Sox 5-4 to complete a three-game sweep on Wednesday.

The Twins won for the 10th time in 12 tries and moved 3 1/2 games ahead of the White Sox in the American League Central. Minnesota has won four in a row and Chicago has lost four straight.

Cristian Guzman drew a leadoff walk in the Twins 10th off Shingo Takatsu (4-2) and moved up on a sacrifice. After Justin Morneau was intentionally walked and Torii Hunter was thrown out trying to bunt, Jones hit a foul fly near the left-field stands.

Valentin ran down the ball and had plenty of time and room, but dropped a backhanded attempt. Two pitches later, Jones followed with a line drive single to left.

Terry Mulholland (3-3) got the win with a scoreless ninth and Joe Nathan closed for his 28th save.

Athletics 3, Mariners 2

In Oakland, California, Mark Mulder earned his 14th victory when pinch-hitter Mark Kotsay singled home the winning run in the ninth inning, as Oakland handed Seattle a team-record 15th straight road loss.

The A's won their fifth in a row as Mulder (14-3) pitched his fifth complete game of the season.

Eric Byrnes hit a tying solo homer in the eighth off Seattle reliever Shigetoshi Hasegawa, then Julio Mateo (1-2) gave up Kotsay's one-hit that scored Scott Hatteberg from second.

Mulder gave up eight hits in becoming the majors' top winner this season. Texas' Kenny Rogers was to try for his 14th victory later Wednesday in Anaheim.

Seattle starter Jamie Moyer struck out a season-high nine over seven innings, and allowed only five hits and a walk, but remained winless in his last eight starts.

Ichiro Suzuki extended his hitting streak to 20 games, the longest in the majors. He chopped a single to short in the third, just beating out the throw to first by Bobby Crosby. It is Suzuki's third career 20-game hitting streak. He has 43 hits this month after getting 50 in May.

Orioles 4, Red Sox 1

Dave Borkowski took a two-hitter into the eighth inning, and Javy Lopez hit two homers off Curt Schilling to lead Baltimore past Boston.

Facing a torrid-hitting club that scored 39 runs on 52 hits in its previous four games, Borkowski (2-2) allowed three hits in seven-plus innings. He struck out seven and walked none in a brilliant -- and unexpected -- performance.

Borkowski was lifted after Kevin Millar led off the eighth with a single. B.J. Ryan struck out Jason Varitek and Bill Mueller before retiring Gabe Kapler on a grounder.

Ryan completed the four-hitter, but gave up a solo homer to David Ortiz in the ninth.

Blue Jays 3, Yankees 2, 10 innings

In Toronto, Vernon Wells homered in the 10th inning and Carlos Delgado had a tying RBI double in the eighth to lead Toronto over New York.

Wells homered off Scott Proctor (1-1) with one out as Toronto avoided a three-game sweep. In the top of the 10th, Wells robbed Derek Jeter of extra bases with a running catch at the wall in center field.

A night after hitting his 400th career homer in Tuesday's victory, New York's Gary Sheffield reached the fifth deck of SkyDome with a first-inning homer off Miguel Batista.

Angels 2, Rangers 0

In Anaheim, California, Troy Percival earned his 300th career save, and John Lackey allowed three hits over 8 1-3 innings to lead Anaheim past Texas.

Percival became the 18th member of the 300-save club, getting Mark Teixeira to ground out to second to end the game. It was only his fourth opportunity to close a game since June 1. He spent two weeks on the disabled list because of inflammation in his elbow.

Lackey (9-9) won for the fifth time in six decisions, tying a season high with seven strikeouts, walking one and retiring 15 of his last 16 batters after losing his other two starts against Texas this season.