Brewers 5, Astros 3
Both teams did it.
Ben Sheets once again beat Houston as the Brewers stopped a six-game losing streak, downing the NL Central-leading Astros 5-3.
“We didn’t want to make it seven,” Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said. “Benny came up huge.”
The Astros stayed one game ahead of Chicago, which lost 3-2 to Montreal. St. Louis lost to Colorado 9-4 and remained 2 1/2 games behind Houston.
“We try to take care of our own,” Houston manager Jimy Williams said. “We’ve got our own schedule. Now we have to go home and get ready to play the Cardinals.”
Houston had won three in a row and six of seven. The Astros finished 7-3 on the their 11-day road trip.
“We just have to keep winning series,” Houston star Jeff Bagwell said. “If that’s not good enough, it wasn’t meant to be. But this was a very good road trip.”
Sheets (11-12) matched his career high for wins and defeated the Astros for the sixth straight time.
Sheets had lost five in a row overall, but stopped that skid by allowing three runs and eight hits in eight innings.
“I wasn’t down on myself,” Sheets said. “Every time I get the ball I think I’m going to win.”
Dan Kolb pitched the ninth for his 17th save in 17 chances.
Ron Villone (6-4) pitched six innings for Houston. He allowed three earned runs on five hits.
After Houston took a 2-1 lead with two runs in the fourth, Villone gave the two runs back in the bottom half.
“That’s everything,” Yost said. “It takes the wind out of your sails when we bring the lead back to our side of the table.”
Lance Berkman’s single scored Bagwell to cut the Milwaukee lead to 5-3 in the eighth.
Podsednik’s leadoff home run gave Milwaukee a 1-0 lead. In the fourth, Houston tied it at 1 on a throwing error by catcher Osik and Geoff Blum followed with an RBI single.
Sheets’ last victory was July 29 at New York against the Mets. … Blum has 14 RBIs in his last 23 games. … Osik equaled a career high with three hits. … Podsednik’s 38 stolen bases are a Brewers’ NL record. … Milwaukee hasn’t been swept in a four-game series by Houston since April 10-13, 1998, as the Astrodome. … These two teams will play the final four games of the season at Minute Maid Park. … Milwaukee went 3-7 on its 10-game homestand. The Brewers visit San Francisco (0-3) next and then St. Louis (2-8). … Milwaukee will present its first Robin Yount Minor League Performance Awards on Sept. 20 at Miller Park. Yount, who played his entire career with the Brewers, was theclub’s first inductee in the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999.