Wright homers as Mets shut down Phillies: NL roundup
PHILADELPHIA — Jonathon Niese and two relievers combined on a six-hitter, David Wright homered despite a broken finger and the New York Mets beat the Philadelphia Phillies 5-0 on Saturday.
Niese (2-0) allowed five hits and struck out five in 6 2-3 innings. Bobby Parnell got four outs and Jon Rauch pitched the ninth.
Wright was 3 for 5, including a long homer on the first pitch he saw after missing three games with a broken right pinkie. Lucas Duda also connected for the Mets, who are off to a surprising 6-2 start.
The five-time defending NL East champion Phillies are 3-5 and struggling offensively without All-Stars Chase Utley and Ryan Howard in the middle of their lineup. They've scored two runs or less in five of their eight games.
Phillies starter Vance Worley (0-1) allowed four runs and eight hits in six innings.
Wright hurt his finger diving back to a base Monday night. He finally felt well enough to return on Saturday, and made an impact right away.
WASHINGTON — Edwin Jackson threw a two-hitter for his fifth career complete game and Adam LaRoche added to his unusually strong start with a tiebreaking two-run double Saturday, helping the Washington Nationals win their fifth game in a row, 4-1 over the Cincinnati Reds.
Other than a rocky second inning, Jackson (1-0) was as efficient and effective as can be, striking out nine. He retired 16 consecutive batters in one stretch, until walking Chris Heisey leading off the eighth. After a visit from pitching coach Steve McCatty, Jackson got back in gear, striking out the side. And he finished with the flourish of a 1-2-3 ninth.
As if all of that weren't enough, Jackson even singled off Reds starter Homer Bailey (0-2).
ST. LOUIS — Lance Lynn pitched effectively into the sixth inning and Yadier Molina had two hits and two RBIs, leading the St. Louis Cardinals to a 5-1 win over the Chicago Cubs on Saturday.
The Cardinals snapped a two-game skid with their fourth win in six games. Chicago, which lost five of its first six, had won two in a row.
Lynn (2-0) gave up four hits and one run in 5 1-3 innings. He struck out five, walked two and lowered his ERA to 1.50.
Lynn, the 39th overall pick in the 2008 draft, allowed one run over 6 2-3 innings in his first start, a 9-3 win at Milwaukee on Sunday. He began the season with a 1-1 career mark.
Jon Jay hit his second home run of the season in the seventh off Shawn Camp.
MIAMI — Carlos Lee drove in the tying run with a two-out single in the ninth inning, and an error by left fielder Logan Morrison allowed the go-ahead run to score Saturday night as the Houston Astros rallied to beat closer Heath Bell and the Miami Marlins 5-4.
Bell, one of the Marlins' All-Star acquisitions this off-season, took the mound with a 4-1 lead to start the ninth but had a shaky performance for the third time in as many outings this season.
The Astros had four hits in the inning and scored four times, taking advantage of three Miami errors.
The last miscue was by Morrison, who misjudged a slicing fly hit by Brian Bogusevic. Morrison staggered and fell as he tried to catch it, and the ball glanced off the heel of his glove, allowing a runner to score from third.
ATLANTA — Mike Minor pitched two-hit ball into the eighth inning to give Atlanta's rotation a lift and the Braves survived a ninth-inning scare to beat Shaun Marcum and the Milwaukee Brewers 2-1 on Saturday night for their fourth straight victory.
Craig Kimbrel pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth, striking out pinch-hitter George Kottaras and Mat Gamel for his fourth save.
Minor (1-1) recorded 18 consecutive outs after hitting Corey Hart with a pitch to open the second inning. The left-hander did not allow an earned run in 7 1-3 innings, becoming the first Braves starter this season to get an out after the fifth. He struck out four and walked one in the longest start of his career.
The Braves have won four straight after losing their first four games. Milwaukee has lost three straight.
DENVER — Todd Helton hit a two-run homer off closer J.J. Putz in the bottom of the ninth inning and the Colorado Rockies rallied for an 8-7 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on a rain-soaked Saturday night.
With two outs, Helton belted his first homer of the season down the right-field line and the towering shot stayed just fair. He raised his hands in the air as he rounded the bases and was mobbed by teammates at home plate.
Tyler Chatwood (1-0) pitched two innings and gave up a run to earn the win in relief.
The Diamondbacks were trailing 5-1 when the game was halted by a relentless downpour after four innings. But the 71-minute break energized their bats and they came out of the clubhouse swinging.
SAN FRANCISCO — Emmanuel Burriss scored on a throwing error by shortstop Clint Barmes in the ninth inning to give the San Francisco Giants a 4-3 win over the struggling Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday night.
With the bases loaded and nobody out, Melky Cabrera hit a sharp grounder to shortstop. Barmes, playing in at the edge of the infield grass, made a low throw home that bounced in front of catcher Rod Barajas. He tried to make a backhand stop, but the ball skipped away.
The Giants earned their second straight series victory, after Matt Cain tossed a one-hitter in a 5-0 win Friday.
Burriss hit a leadoff single in the ninth off Chris Resop (0-1) and pinch-hitter Ryan Theriot followed with a sharp single to right that moved Burriss to third.
LOS ANGELES — Ted Lilly pitched seven innings of two-hit ball in his season debut after coming off the disabled list, Matt Kemp hit a pair of two-run homers and Andre Ethier also went deep, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 6-1 victory over the San Diego Padres on Saturday night.
The Dodgers, who had to win 25 of their final 35 games last season just to finish three games above .500, are off to a major league-leading 8-1 start -- their best since beginning their 1981 World Series championship season 9-1.
Lilly, whose season was delayed because of neck stiffness, threw 79 pitches, struck out four and was charged with an unearned run. The 14-year veteran left-hander finished last season 12-14 with a 3.97 ERA after winning five of his final six starts.