MIAMI – A.J. Burnett won his seventh straight start and combined with Todd Jones on Florida’s third consecutive shutout, a 3-0 victory Friday night over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Paul Lo Duca’s two-run single broke up a scoreless tie in the seventh. Burnett (12-6) allowed six hits in eight-plus innings to set a Marlins record with his 49th career victory, surpassing former teammate Brad Penny, who will pitch for Los Angeles against Florida on Saturday.

Burnett’s career record is 49-44; Penny went 48-42 for the Marlins.

Burnett struck out nine, walked one and matched his career high for wins in a season. The Marlins, who blanked San Diego on Wednesday and Thursday, lead the major leagues with 15 shutouts.

Jones entered with two on in the ninth and struck out three batters in a row for his 27th save in 29 chances.

Cubs 5, Rockies 3

DENVER – Mark Prior struck out 10 in six strong innings, then got relief help from Kerry Wood again in the Chicago Cubs’ 5-3 victory over the Colorado Rockies.

Todd Walker homered and Jeromy Burnitz drove in two runs for the Cubs, who have won three straight.

Prior (9-4) allowed two runs, five hits and two walks, improving to 4-1 in his last eight starts. He threw 118 pitches and fanned Todd Helton twice in the 20th double-digit strikeout game of his career.

Reds 17, Diamondbacks 3

CINCINNATI – Austin Kearns hit three-run homers in consecutive innings and set a career high with six RBIs, leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 17-3 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Felipe Lopez added a three-run homer and Wily Mo Pena had a solo shot as the Reds set a season high for runs in a game and in one inning, scoring 10 in the fourth. The Reds had 15 hits while winning consecutive home games for the first time since beating Chicago on July 21 and Milwaukee on July 22.

Mets 1, Nationals 0

NEW YORK – Jae Seo allowed four hits in eight innings to outpitch John Patterson, and Victor Diaz drove in the only run as the New York Mets beat the Washington Nationals 1-0.

Jose Reyes tied career highs with four hits – all singles – and three stolen bases, helping the Mets take the opener of the three-game series between NL wild-card hopefuls. New York is 17-4 in series openers at home, tops in the majors.

Seo (5-1) improved to 3-0 since the Mets recalled him from Triple-A Norfolk earlier this month. He matched the longest outing of his career – last Saturday in a victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers – and has allowed one run and 13 hits in 23 1-3 innings since his return.

Pirates 11, Phillies 2

PHILADELPHIA – Kip Wells allowed three hits over seven innings, hit a two-run homer and snapped a career-high four-game losing streak in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ 11-2 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies.

The right-hander improved to 5-0 with a 1.26 ERA against Philadelphia for his career. In his last win before the streak, Wells shut out the Phillies and struck out 12 on July 5.

Cardinals 5, Giants 4

ST. LOUIS – Jim Edmonds’ two-run double with two outs in the bottom of the ninth capped a five-run rally that gave the St. Louis Cardinals a 5-4 victory over the San Francisco Giants.

Yadier Molina hit a three-run homer – his third hit of the game – earlier in the inning to help get 17-game winner Chris Carpenter a no-decision and keep his nine-game winning streak alive.

Julian Tavarez (2-2) allowed an inherited runner to score in the ninth but got three outs for the win.

Padres 12, Braves 7

ATLANTA – Joe Randa hit a three-run homer and the San Diego Padres matched their season high with 20 hits in a 12-7 victory over the Atlanta Braves.

The Padres improved to 4-0 this season against Atlanta, moved within a game of .500 (60-61) and pushed their lead in the NL West to four games over second-place Arizona. They swept a three-game series against the Braves in San Diego on May 16-18.

The Braves still lead the NL East by 41/2 games over Philadelphia and Florida, but they are only 5-5 on their 12-game homestand.

Mike Hampton (5-3) gave up 11 hits and seven runs – both season highs – in 3 1-3 innings, the second straight night Atlanta’s starter failed to get through four innings.

American League

Tigers 9, Blue Jays 5

DETROIT – Carlos Pena hit two long homers and drove in three runs in his first game back from the minors, sending the Detroit Tigers to a 9-5 win over the Toronto Blue Jays.

Dmitri Young, Chris Shelton and Ivan Rodriguez also connected as Detroit hit a season-high five homers to win for the fifth time in six games. Young and Shelton each drove in two runs. Vernon Wells and Eric Hinske homered for Toronto.

Tigers starter Mike Maroth (11-11) got the win. He allowed four runs and 10 hits in 6 2-3 innings, walking one and striking out six. Craig Dingman retired Wells with two on for his third save.

David Bush (2-7) lasted only 2 2-3 innings. He gave up four runs, two earned, and five hits.

Indians 5, Orioles 4

CLEVELAND – Ben Broussard homered leading off the 10th inning and the Cleveland Indians kept pace in the AL wild-card chase with a 5-4 win over the Baltimore Orioles.

Broussard, who had a signing engagement after the game at the House of Blues to promote his new CD, drove a 1-1 pitch from Steve Kline (2-4) over the right-field wall to cap the Indians’ comeback.

Cleveland was down 4-1 in the eighth but tied it on Casey Blake’s three-run homer.

After connecting for his 12th homer, Broussard pumped his fists as he rounded the bases and was mobbed at home plate by his teammates, who pounded him on the head all the way back to the dugout.

Devil Rays 2, Rangers 1

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Seth McClung allowed one run and three hits in seven innings, leading the Tampa Bay Devil Rays past the Texas Rangers 2-1.

McClung (4-7) struck out five and walked one as the Devil Rays improved to 21-12 since the All-Star break. Joe Borowski ran his scoreless stretch to 16 1-3 innings with a perfect eighth before Danys Baez got three outs for his 27th save in 34 opportunities.

Alex Gonzalez had an RBI single during a two-run sixth for Tampa Bay, which has won three straight and six of seven. Center fielder Joey Gathright made a leaping catch at the wall to take an extra-base hit away from Alfonso Soriano in the seventh.

Twins 7, Mariners 4

MINNEAPOLIS – Lew Ford hit a tiebreaking, three-run homer in the seventh inning, Carlos Silva won for the first time since July 4 and the surging Minnesota Twins rallied past the Seattle Mariners 7-4 for their sixth straight victory.

Joe Mauer also homered and drove in two runs for Minnesota, which has won nine of 10. The Twins began the day 31/2 games behind AL wild-card leader Oakland.

Yankees 3, White Sox 1

CHICAGO – Mike Mussina allowed five singles in seven innings and the New York Yankees sent the slumping Chicago White Sox to their season-worst sixth straight loss with a 3-1 victory.

Mussina (12-7) got stronger after escaping the first inning when the White Sox had three singles and scored their only run. He walked one and struck out seven while allowing just four baserunners after the opening inning.

Tom Gordon pitched the eighth and Mariano Rivera worked a perfect ninth for his 33rd save in 37 chances.

The Yankees closer had blown two of his last three saves, since converting 31 straight.

Trailing in both the AL East and in the wild-card race, the Yankees pushed across two runs in the fifth off Jon Garland, who failed to become the American League’s first 17-game winner. Garland (16-7) gave up seven hits and three runs – two earned – and lost for the third time in his last four starts as Chicago continued its horrid play at home where it has dropped 14 of 20.

The White Sox’s struggling offense got an even bigger blow when home run and RBI leader Paul Konerko was scratched from the lineup after straining his back in batting practice.

New York broke a 1-1 tie in the fifth as Tino Martinez and Robinson Cano singled with one out. Martinez took third on the play and Cano advanced to second when White Sox’s right fielder Jermaine Dye fumbled the ball for an error.


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