Krauss clout is not enough

AARON BRACY Associated Press Published:

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Houston Astros had the matchup they wanted, but didn't get the result they needed.

Ryan Howard hit a grand slam, capping a five-run rally in the eighth inning that lifted the Philadelphia Phillies over the Astros 6-5 on Thursday night.

Howard connected with two outs on a full-count pitch from Tony Sipp (2-2).

"The matchup was what we wanted," Astros manager Bo Porter said. "He beat the best guy we have down there."

Chris Carter hit two homers and drove in four runs for Houston, which lost its eighth straight in Philadelphia.

"This was a pretty tough loss," Porter said.

Carlos Ruiz and Ben Revere each had two hits as the Phillies completed a three-game sweep.

Mario Hollands (2-1) pitched two scoreless innings, and Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for his 27th save in 30 chances.

Marc Krauss also homered for Houston.

Philadelphia trailed 5-1 entering the eighth after Colin McHugh threw seven strong innings for the Astros.

Houston reliever Josh Fields gave up hits to three of the four batters he faced, including Cody Asche's RBI single that made it 5-2.

Sipp allowed a single to Jimmy Rollins to load the bases with one out. After Chase Utley flied out, Howard homered into the seats in left-center field.

"I hold myself to a high standard, so I have to make sure it doesn't happen again," Sipp said. "I was trying to go up, but the pitch went down and in. He put a pretty good swing on it.

"I didn't think it was going out. I knew it was high enough, but he didn't drive it like he usually does."

The Philadelphia slugger thought he caught enough of it off the bat but wasn't sure it would clear the wall as he was rounding the bases.

"I hit it pretty flush," Howard said. "I got it pretty good. Off the bat, yeah, I pretty much knew. But that wind started kicking up a little bit. I was happy it was enough."

Howard was ready for Sipp to throw him strikes.

"I knew going in he was going to bury some sliders and I had to keep off the sliders," Howard said. "Bases loaded, I knew at some point he had to give me something to hit. He's got to give me a strike."

Howard pointed to his family after crossing home plate and then took a curtain call. It was the third homer and 11th RBI in 12 games since manager Ryne Sandberg benched the struggling slugger for three games, July 23-25.

Howard has endured boos and some negative reaction to comments he made regarding the treatment he has been getting.

Carter hit his second homer of the game and 24th of the season, a two-run drive in the third. He leads the majors with 11 home runs since the start of July.


Astros: Reliever Josh Zeid had the first of two operations on his right foot on Wednesday, and the Astros deemed it successful. Zeid will have the same operation on his left foot in six weeks. The right-hander appeared in 23 games this season with a 6.79 ERA in 20 2/3 innings. He last pitched on July 24. ... Outfielder George Springer will rejoin the Astros in Houston on Friday, but his status will be evaluated before the game. He was on pace to be activated from the DL (quadriceps), but his return is in question after he left Wednesday's rehab start at Single-A Quad Cities because of discomfort.

Phillies: Cliff Lee's season officially is over. That was the indication on Wednesday when his locker was cleaned out, and the Phillies made the announcement on Thursday that Lee won't pitch again in 2014 due to a Grade 2 strain of his left elbow. Lee will require rest but not surgery and will begin a throwing program in September or October with the hope that he will be healthy for spring training.


Astros: Houston returns home to host intrastate rival Texas on Friday night in a matchup of the teams with the worst records in the AL West. Astros left-hander Brett Oberholtzer (4-7, 4.17) faces right-hander Miles Mikolas (1-4, 7.29). Oberholtzer, in his fourth stint in the big leagues this season, is 4-1 with a 3.08 ERA in his last eight starts.

Phillies: Philadelphia hosts the Mets for the first of four on Friday night. Right-hander A.J. Burnett (6-11, 4.16) opposes New York righty Bartolo Colon (10-9, 4.12) in a meeting of veterans who are a combined 78 years old. Two-time Cy Young winner and eight-time All-Star Roy Halladay also will be on the mound for the Phillies, but in a ceremonial capacity. Halladay will throw out the first pitch as the Phillies welcome back former players on alumni weekend.


McHugh was in line for his first victory since June 3 after allowing one run and five hits, striking out eight, and walking none. He is 0-6 in his last nine starts and has a 1.86 ERA on the road overall.

"McHugh did a great job but our bullpen wasn't able to hold it together," Porter said.


Phillies starter Sean O'Sullivan gave up three homers in six innings. He was summoned from Toledo, Ohio, where the Phillies' Triple-A team was playing, after Philadelphia traded pitcher Roberto Hernandez to the Los Angeles Dodgers earlier Thursday.

O'Sullivan had started the second game of a doubleheader on June 28 against Atlanta in his only other big league appearance this season.

He was just about to take a nap around 1:00 Thursday afternoon when he got the call to catch a plane to Philadelphia. He arrived at the airport around 5:30, but it took him 30 minutes to take the short trip to the ballpark due to rush-hour traffic, giving him about an hour to get ready for the start.

"I could have shown up at 7:02 and I would have been ready to go," he said. "I'm just happy to be here, happy for the opportunity."


Philadelphia's Grady Sizemore was involved in an unusual 6-5-6 double play in the second inning. Asche hit a soft liner behind second base where shortstop Marvin Gonzalez was positioned. Sizemore held up at second base to see if Gonzalez would catch the ball, but when it dropped in front of Gonzalez he was caught in no man's land. Gonzalez stepped on second to force out Carlos Ruiz, who was on first, and then got Sizemore out in a rundown.

That twin killing was one of six double plays in the game, four of which were converted by Philadelphia to tie a season high.


The Phillies brought out three recipients of the Purple Heart to change the bases after the third inning. Purple Heart recipients Shawn Lees, Bryon Yoder and Carol Eggert changed the bases while receiving a standing ovation from the crowd of 26,609 fans and applause from the Astros and Phillies players.


ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Hyun-Jin Ryu yielded two hits over seven dominant innings, Hanley Ramirez had a two-run single and the Los Angeles Dodgers wrapped up the Freeway Series with their third straight win, 7-0 over the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday night.

Angel Stadium was filled with its biggest crowd in 16 years, but the blue-clad fans had all the fun as the Dodgers won the Freeway Series for the first time since 2006.

Ryu (13-5) was brilliant in his fourth victory in five starts, striking out four and allowing just two runners to reach third base.

Adrian Gonzalez added a late two-run single for the NL-leading Dodgers (66-50), who thoroughly shut down their Southern California neighbors.

The Angels (67-47) managed just two runs on eight hits in the final 24 innings of the series, falling three games behind Oakland atop the overall major league standings.

C.J. Wilson (8-8) had another rough outing in his second start back from the disabled list. He yielded six hits and four walks in his fifth straight winless start, throwing just 54 of his 100 pitches for strikes.


OAKLAND, Calif. -- Jon Lester pitched a three-hitter for his fourth career shutout, leading Oakland to the win.

The All-Star left-hander struck out eight, walked two and only allowed two runners past first base in his 11th career complete game.

Lester (12-7) was making second start since being acquired at the trade deadline as part of the blockbuster deal that sent Cuban slugger Yoenis Cespedes to Boston.

Stephen Vogt homered to help Oakland become the first team in the majors to reach 70 wins.

Minnesota's Yohan Pino (1-4) allowed three runs in 5 2/3 innings.


TORONTO -- Caleb Joseph homered for the fourth consecutive game, Miguel Gonzalez won for the first time in three starts and the Orioles won for the fourth time in five games.

The Orioles lead the AL East by five games over Toronto and the New York Yankees. It was the AL-best 35th road victory for Baltimore, which has won six consecutive series, extending a season-best streak.

Gonzalez (6-6) allowed four hits in six innings, including Anthony Gose's leadoff homer in the fifth. The right-hander improved to 2-1 with a 2.78 ERA in his last seven starts.

Zach Britton pitched the ninth for his 24th save in 27 chances.

Blue Jays left-hander J.A. Happ (8-6) struck out a career-high 12 in a season-best eight innings. He allowed two runs and five hits.


MILWAUKEE -- Wily Peralta became the majors' first 14-game winner, earning his fifth straight victory for Milwaukee.

Peralta (14-6) struck out a career-high nine in 6 2/3 innings. He gave up one run and seven hits while improving to 10-1 with a 4.06 ERA in his last 12 starts.

Francisco Rodriguez pitched the ninth for his 34th save.

Jake Peavy (0-3) allowed three runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings for San Francisco. The veteran right-hander is 0-12 in 18 outings since winning at Toronto while with Boston on April 25.

Milwaukee jumped in front with two runs in the sixth. Khris Davis doubled in Aramis Ramirez, and Mark Reynolds had a sacrifice fly.


ST. LOUIS -- Adam Wainwright pitched seven innings for his 14th win, matching Milwaukee's Wily Peralta for the major league lead, and rookie Kolten Wong homered twice for St. Louis.

Jhonny Peralta's two-run double keyed a three-run first off Brandon Workman (1-5) and Wong had his first multihomer game. The Cardinals took two of three from their stripped-down opponents, who beat them in the World Series last fall but are in last place in the AL East.

Wainwright (14-6) allowed two runs and seven hits. Pat Neshek got three outs for his third save.

Mike Napoli and Christian Vasquez each drove in a run for Boston in the third.


WASHINGTON -- Bryce Harper's two-run homer in the 13th inning lifted Washington to a season-high 4 1/2-game lead in the NL East.

The Nationals take that margin over the reeling second-place Braves into a three-game series that opens Friday at Atlanta. The Braves were off Thursday after an 0-8 road trip against the Dodgers, Padres and Mariners.

Harper's shot to left against Carlos Torres (5-5) was only the fourth homer of an injury-plagued season for the 2012 NL Rookie of the Year.

The teams used a total of 15 pitchers, eight by New York.

Washington's Craig Stammen (2-4) gave up one hit in three innings for the win.


SEATTLE -- Roenis Elias took a no-hitter into the fifth inning, and Dustin Ackley led a potent Seattle offense with a home run and four RBIs.

Elias (9-9) allowed only one walk before Conor Gillaspie hit a one-out double in the fifth. The rookie stranded Gillaspie, but left the game after giving up a two-run home run to Dayan Viciedo with two outs in the sixth.

Ackley gave the Mariners an early lead with a solo home run, and Endy Chavez, Robinson Cano, and Kyle Seager each hit a two-run shot.

Scott Carroll (4-7) pitched five-plus innings for Chicago, allowing seven runs and seven hits.


PHOENIX -- Jeremy Guthrie retired the final 19 batters in Kansas City's first complete game this season, and the Royals completed a three-game interleague sweep.

Guthrie (8-9) allowed seven hits, struck out four and walked none in his eighth career complete game.

Alex Gordon hit a two-run homer for the Royals, who have won four in a row and 12 of 15 to pull within 2 1/2 games of first-place Detroit in the AL Central.

Vidal Nuno (2-8) lasted just four innings for Arizona, allowing five runs and seven hits.


PITTSBURGH -- Edinson Volquez pitched one-hit ball for seven innings for the Pirates, and rookie Gregory Polanco drove in four runs.

Marlins reliever Dan Jennings was hit in the head by a line drive off the bat of Jordy Mercer in the seventh. Manager Mike Redmond said Jennings had his eyes open and was responding to questions as he was taken to a hospital.

Jennings momentarily stumbled before going to his knees after the play. He stood up to get in a cart and held up a hand to acknowledge the crowd as he was driven off the field.

Volquez (9-7) didn't allow a hit until the fifth, when Donovan Solano singled with one out.

Rookie Brian Flynn (0-1) was chased before he got an out in the fifth.

Giancarlo Stanton hit his 27th homer of the season, a two-run drive in the Miami ninth.


DENVER -- Javier Baez hit two more homers and drove in four runs, leading the Cubs to the win.

Baez also had an RBI single, and fellow rookie Kyle Hendricks (3-1) pitched a career-high eight innings after the start of the game was delayed 39 minutes because of rain.

The 21-year-old Baez also homered in his debut Tuesday, hitting a game-deciding shot in the 12th inning on the day he was promoted from the minors.

Justin Morneau and Wilin Rosario had two hits apiece for the Rockies (45-69), who have lost six of seven. Rookie Yohan Flande (0-4) gave up four runs and seven hits in six innings.

The Cubs (49-64) closed out a six-game trip by taking two of three in the series between last-place teams.

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