Ricky Gutierrez wasn't offended when the Milwaukee Brewers intentionally walked Craig Biggio for the second straight time to get to him. But he certainly was inspired.
Biggio was intentionally walked with two outs and a runner on second in the second inning, but Gutierrez grounded out to end the inning.
In the fourth, the Brewers gave Biggio another free pass to load the bases with two outs. This time, however, Gutierrez lined a shot into deep right-center to give the Astros a 4-2 lead and help them sweep the four-game series.
"I wasn't thinking about (the intentional walks). I was just trying to get a good pitch to hit," Gutierrez said. "I'd probably do the same thing if I were them. Craig is a .300 hitter and I'm only hitting .270, so it was probably the right thing to do."
The usually reserved Gutierrez couldn't contain his excitement as he rounded first base.
"I wasn't saying anything," said Gutierrez, whose hit gave him a career high 36 RBI for the season . "I was just running around screaming. It was just emotion. It was a big lift for me."
Biggio understood why Gutierrez was so excited.
"I've been the guy on the other side of that, the one they were trying to get to when they walked somebody else," Biggio said. "It's just the strategy opposing managers use but it makes you want to prove them wrong and Ricky did. He came through with a huge ht."
Jose Lima (11-6), who pitched eight strong innings for the victory, couldn't contain his emotions after watching Gutierrez's triple.
"I think I hit my head on the top of the dugout," Lima said. "I was so excited I jumped too high."
Brewers starter Steve Woodard (9-7) didn't regret the intentional walk to Biggio.
"I'd do the same thing again," he said. "I'm not about to second-guess myself because he could have hit it right at someone."
His teammates agreed.
"Biggio's been the guy for them," Jeff Cirillo said. "(Manager) Phil Garner said we weren't going to let him beat us. Gutierrez failed the first time. The second time he got the big hit."
Lima allowed two runs and five hits, struck out six and walked two for his third straight victory. He retired 13 in a row from the third through seventh innings.
Woodard went seven innings, allowed four runs on six hits.
Moises Alou singled home Gutierrez to give the Astros a 1-0 lead in the first. Gutierrez had singled and stolen second.
The Brewers tied it in the second when Jeromy Burnitz doubled, went to third on a fly by Dave Nilsson and scored on John Jaha's single.
Milwaukee took a 2-1 lead in the third when Fernando Vina drew a two-out walk, moved to second on Mark Loretta's single and scored on Jeff Cirillo's single.
Pete Incaviglia, making his first appearance for the Astros since getting called up from Triple-A New Orleans on Monday, hit a two-run double in the eighth.
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