Big Unit Gets Back On Track

Diamondbacks' Randy Johnson fires a pitch. Brewers AP


Randy Johnson knew what to do with some rare offensive support.

Johnson was staked to a big lead early and threw seven scoreless innings in the Arizona Diamondbacks' 9-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night.

"I'll never complain when your team goes out and gets you five runs," said Johnson (8-1), who joined teammate Todd Stottlemyre as the only eight-game winners in the NL.

"The biggest thing is as a pitcher you have to stay focused, because if a team goes out and scores right away, sometimes you can lose focus a little bit."

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Game Summary

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  • Johnson went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run, scoring after going from first to third on Tony Womack's single to right in the sixth inning.

    Johnson allowed three hits and struck out eight, just the second time in 11 starts that he didn't reach double figures in strikeouts. The left-hander leads the majors with 121 strikeouts in 88 innings and his 2,814 career Ks are five shy of Cy Young for 14th place.

    Since his last win May 5 against San Diego, Johnson had a no-decision in a 2-1 Diamondbacks loss to Los Angeles, a 2-0 loss at Montreal and another no-decision against the New York Mets on Sunday.

    In the last game, Johnson gave up eight hits all for extra bases during a 7-6 loss to the Mets. His ERA, which was 0.97 before the loss to New York, rose to 1.44, but dropped to an NL-leading 1.33 with this start.

    Manager Buck Showalter pulled Johnson after seven innings and 83 pitches, depriving him of his sixth complete game this season. Johnson didn't mind.

    "The pitches that I didn't throw tonight because I came out are pitches that I can throw another game when Buck feels I need to be ou there," he said.

    "I was trying to save some bullets," Showalter said.

    Kelly Stinnett tied his career high with four RBIs all in the first three innings as the Diamondbacks built an 8-0 lead.

    "I've had my moments," said Stinnett, who got the green light to swing on a 3-0 pitch when he hit a two-run homer. "I haven't been really consistent like I'd like it to be."

    Womack went 2-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to 21 games, longest in the majors this season.

    The Diamondbacks won their franchise-record 10th straight home game and fourth straight overall.

    Johnson walked Ron Belliard to start the fourth inning, but did not give up a hit until Lyle Mouton sent a sharp grounder between first and second with one out in the fifth.

    Rookie reliever Hector Ramirez, who came on for starter John Snyder (0-1) to start the fourth, got his first major league hit in the sixth with a bloop single, and James Mouton beat out a bunt single in the seventh.

    The Diamondbacks scored six runs in the first inning after two were out.

    Snyder walked four of the first six batters, issuing an intentional walk to Erubiel Durazo after nearly hitting him with a wild pitch that allowed Jay Bell to score from third.

    That loaded the bases for Turner Ward, who was called up from Triple-A Tucson earlier in the day. Ward beat out an RBI infield hit with a headfirst slide to make it 2-0.

    "He was all over the place just like last time," manager Davey Lopes said about Snyder's second start with Milwaukee. "He can't find the strike zone. He didn't throw strikes, and that's a serious problem."

    Stinnett followed with a two-run single, and Johnson and Womack added run-scoring singles.

    "It's a confidence thing," said Snyder, who has lost his last seven decisions six with the White Sox last year. "I've got to just go out and build more confidence."

    Stinnett homered in the third, and Bell hit an RBI single in the sixth.

    Mark Loretta had an RBI single off Greg Swindell in the eghth for Milwaukee.

    Notes

  • Brewers OF Geoff Jenkins, expected to come off the DL this weekend, will be out at least three more games. Jenkins broke the middle finger of his right hand while batting May 5.
  • The Diamondbacks placed OF Travis Lee on the DL because of a groin strain he experienced Wednesday.
  • In the last two games of a sweep of Pittsburgh, the Diamondbacks went homerless for the first time since a two-game outage against San Diego last Oct. 1-2.

    ©2000 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed
    • CBSNews.com staff CBSNews.com staff

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