Originally created 08/27/99

MLB roundup: Sosa continues hot streak by hitting No. 53



CHICAGO -- Sammy Sosa hit his major league-leading 53rd home run, and the Cubs rallied from five runs down to beat the Giants 11-10 on Mickey Morandini's ninth-inning RBI double.

The Cubs trailed 7-2 after three innings before rallying behind Sosa and Mark Grace, who hit consecutive solo homers in the fifth inning. Sosa has 10 homers in the last 12 games for the Cubs, who are just 5-20 in August.

Sosa, who has nearly one-third of the Cubs 160 homers, connected on a 1-1 pitch from Livan Hernandez in the fifth. Sosa is nine games ahead of last year's pace, when he hit No. 53 in the Cubs' 135th game and ended with 66.

The Cubs won the game in the ninth. Jeff Reed hit a leadoff double off Robb Nen (3-7) and two outs later Morandini doubled to left-center to give the Cubs their first win in eight games against the Giants.

Grace added a pair of two-run singles for his seventh career five-RBI game. His second two-run single tied the game in the eighth inning.

PIRATES 8, ROCKIES 4:

In Pittsburgh, Brian Giles drove in four runs, as the Pirates roughed up Colorado ace Pedro Astacio for six runs in the first two innings en route to victory.

Al Martin had three hits and two RBI to back rookie left-hander Jimmy Anderson (2-1), who retired the first 10 hitters before being lifted after 5 2/3 innings in his third career start.

Astacio (14-10) had won four consecutive decisions and lasted at least seven innings in his last eight starts, only to yield six runs and seven hits in two innings.

PADRES 4, BREWERS 3:

In San Diego, Reggie Sanders hit a go-ahead, two-run triple in the seventh inning to back Andy Ashby and lift the Padres past the Brewers.

The Padres, who were outscored 33-3 by the Phillies in the last two games of their six-game road trip, got a strong start from Ashby in their return home.

Ashby (12-7) allowed three runs -- one earned -- on eight hits in seven innings. The right-hander struck out six and did not walk a batter.

DEVIL RAYS 9, WHITE SOX 7:

In St. Petersburg, Fla., Bubba Trammell hit a three-run homer and Jose Guillen had a two-run shot, as the Devil Rays beat the White Sox.

Trammell homered during a four-run, fifth-inning that put the Devil Rays ahead 8-1. Guillen, acquired from the Pirates in a four-player trade on July 23, hit his first homer in the fourth.

Wade Boggs went 2-for-4, raising his hits total to 3,010 with an an RBI double in the fifth and an infield single in the eighth.

Tampa Bay has won nine of 12 and improved to 14-10 in August. The Rays need just one win in their next four games to record their first winning month.