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Archive for Saturday, May 17, 2003

National League Roundup: Drew comes through for Cards

Outfielder’s two-run home run estimated at 514 feet in St. Louis’ victory

May 17, 2003

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— Ignoring a sore knee and ailing back, J.D. Drew hit one of the longest home runs ever at Busch Stadium.

Drew's mammoth two-run shot off the top of the right-field video board helped the St. Louis Cardinals end the Chicago Cubs' five-game winning streak with a 7-4 victory Friday night.

"It feels good to hit them like that," Drew said. "You never know where they're going to end up and it doesn't really matter once they go over, but it makes it interesting for everybody else, I guess."

Woody Williams (5-0) went eight innings for the Cardinals, who won for only the third time in 10 games. But they're 9-1 the last two seasons at home against the Cubs.

Chicago manager Dusty Baker let starter Matt Clement (2-5) bat in the sixth with runners at the corners even though he'd thrown 96 pitches and was trailing 5-4 -- Cubs relievers threw 10 innings in a 17-inning victory Thursday over the Brewers.

Clement surrendered a two-run single to Fernando Vina in the bottom of the sixth, and the Cardinals held on in the opener of a four-game series. Vina was 3-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.

"I needed some innings or else I'm doomed for tomorrow and the next day and the next day," Baker said. "Really, I had only two semi-fresh guys out there in (Mike) Remlinger and the kid, (Matt) Wellemeyer."

Drew missed the previous two games because of a sore back. His third homer off a belt-high fastball from Clement in the fifth was estimated at 514 feet, the fourth-longest at Busch Stadium since the team began estimating homers in 1988. It's the longest homer hit to right field in that time, and it put the Cardinals ahead, 5-3.

Giants 7, Mets 5

San Francisco -- Edgardo Alfonzo homered and drove in four runs against his former team, and Yorvit Torrealba hit a tiebreaking, two-run single in the eighth inning to lift San Francisco past New York. Mets catcher Mike Piazza left in the first inning because of a strained right groin after trying to avoid an inside pitch from Jason Schmidt. X-rays were inconclusive, and Piazza is expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list.

Dodgers 2, Marlins 1

Los Angeles -- Shawn Green hit a two-run double in the eighth inning against reliever Armando Almanza as Los Angeles beat Florida, spoiling a masterful effort by Carl Pavano. Pavano, obtained last August from Montreal in a trade for Cliff Floyd, allowed four hits and no walks over seven scoreless innings.

Pirates 8, D'backs 5 (12)

Phoenix -- Randall Simon hit a three-run homer off Matt Mantei in the 12th inning to give Pittsburgh a victory over Arizona. Mantei (3-2), pitching his second inning, walked Brian Giles with one out, then Aramis Ramirez singled just beyond the glove of third baseman Matt Williams. Simon hit Mantei's first pitch into the right-field seats for his fourth home run of the season.

Braves 6, Padres 4

San Diego -- Robert Fick doubled home the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, and Atlanta overcame an inside-the-park homer by Sean Burroughs to beat San Diego. Atlanta improved to 29-13, the best record in the majors, while the Padres (13-29) lost for the 15th time in 18 games and have the worst mark in the NL.

Expos 4, Rockies 1

Denver -- Michael Barrett hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning and Livan Hernandez came up with a quality start at Coors Field as Montreal beat Colorado. Montreal has won four of its past five games. Barrett homered off Nelson Cruz (3-4) to put the Expos ahead 3-1. Orlando Cabrera hit an RBI single later in the inning, but Rockies right fielder Larry Walker cut down Endy Chavez at the plate to prevent another run.

Brewers 12, Reds 3

Milwaukee -- Wes Helms went 4-for-5 with a grand slam and Geoff Jenkins also drove in four runs as Milwaukee snapped a five-game losing streak. The Brewers, who set an NL record for strikeouts with 24 in a 17-inning loss to the Chicago Cubs Thursday, whiffed seven times Friday night. Adam Dunn homered in his fifth straight game for the Reds.

Astros 4, Phillies 2

Houston -- Lance Berkman hit a go-ahead single in the eighth inning and the Houston bullpen was brilliant again as the Astros beat Philadelphia. Geoff Blum hit a two-run homer for the Astros.

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