Originally created 09/17/06

NL Roundup



WASHINGTON - Alfonso Soriano entered the elite 40-40 club as the Washington Nationals defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 8-5 on Saturday night.

Soriano became the fourth player in major league history to record 40 home runs and 40 stolen bases in a single season when he swiped second base in the first inning. Soriano has 40 steals to go along with 45 home runs.

Soriano led off the bottom of the first with a single to left field. On a 2-0 count to the next batter, Felipe Lopez, Soriano raced for second base. Brewers catcher Mike Rivera double-clutched but did not attempt a throw.

After the steal, Soriano called time, removed the base and handed it to a groundskeeper. The game was delayed for a moment while the RFK Stadium crowd of 24,252 rose for a standing ovation, and Soriano tipped his helmet to the crowd.

CARDINALS 6, GIANTS 1

In St. Louis, Chris Carpenter carried a shutout into the eighth for his 100th career win, outpitching Matt Morris in his return to St. Louis and leading the Cardinals to a win.

Juan Encarnacion's three-run homer capped a four-run first for the Cardinals, who cut their magic number for clinching the NL Central to nine. Albert Pujols was 4-for-4 with an RBI.

Carpenter (15-6) gave up five hits and one run. He also struck out nine to improve to 5-0 in his last eight starts.

Morris (10-14), a former 20-game winner with the Cardinals, yielded five runs and seven hits in six innings.

PHILLIES 7, ASTROS 2

In Houston, Cole Hamels pitched hitless ball for 6w innings and Philadelphia beat Houston to keep close in the wild card race.

The Phillies began the day 1 games behind San Diego for the wild card. Their win prevented the New York Mets from clinching the NL East title.

Hamels (8-8) did not allow a hit until Adam Everett lined an RBI double with two outs in the seventh.

Hamels gave up three hits and struck out 11 in 7w innings. He left after singles by Willy Taveras and Lance Berkman.

PIRATES 3, METS 2

In Pittsburgh, the Piratesagain prevented New York from clinching the NL East when Ronny Paulino hit an RBI double with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning.

The Mets' magic number for clinching their first division title since 1988 remained at one. New York could've won it Friday night, too, but lost to Pittsburgh 5-3.

CUBS 4, REDS 0

In Chicago, Rich Hill pitched a two-hitter for his first major league shutout and Jacque Jones homered for the Cubs.

Hill (6-6) struck out 10, fanning Edwin Encarnacion to end the Cubs' first complete game of the season.

Hill walked one and hit a batter in his first career complete game and third consecutive win. The 26-year-old has allowed just four earned runs in his past five starts for an 0.97 ERA.