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Bagwell & Rookie Blast Padres

Jeff Bagwell hit two home runs and rookie Lance Berkman hit his first two major league homers as the Houston Astros beat San Diego 8-5 Saturday night, extending the Padres' losing streak to nine games.

The Astros are 8-0 against the Padres this season and can complete the season sweep on Sunday. Houston lost to San Diego in the first round of last year's playoffs.

Bagwell, third in the majors in homers behind Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa with 35, hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the seventh off Dan Miceli and a solo shot off Carlos Reyes with two outs in the ninth. Both were just left of dead center field, giving Bagwell his fourth multiple-homer game of the year.

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Game Summary

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  • With one out in the seventh, the game tied 4-4 and Bill Spiers aboard on a fielder's choice, Bagwell hit the first pitch he saw from Miceli (4-3) to straightaway center field, his 34th. With two outs, Berkman lined the first pitch he saw from Miceli who had been the subject of trade rumors into the right-field seats.

    Berkman, promoted from Triple-A New Orleans on July 16, hit a two-run shot in the fourth off Padres ace Andy Ashby for his first big league homer.

    Tony Gwynn went hitless for the second straight night to remain nine short of 3,000 for his career. He went 0-for-3 with two walks. Gwynn has just nine hits in 11 games since coming off the disabled list on July 19.

    Doug Henry (1-1) allowed one hit in 1 1-3 innings for the win.

    A href="">Billy Wagner got Reggie Sanders to foul out to right field with the bases loaded to end it.

    Houston took a 4-0 lead on Berkman's first homer and Derek Bell's two-run double in the fifth.

    But converted reliever Scott Elarton, who opened with 4 1-3 perfect innings, faded quickly in the sixth, when the Padres scored four runs on two hits, three walks, Craig Biggio's fielding error and a hit batsman.

    Gwynn drew a bases-loaded walk for San Diego's first run and Reggie Sanders followed with a two-run single. Pinch-hitter Dave Magadan also drew a bases-loaded walk, off Doug Henry, to force in the tying run.

    Elarton had his fifth straight no-decision. He allowed four runs, two earned, and three hits in 5 2-3 innings.

    Ashby gave up four runs and six hits in six innings.


  • The Padres weren't able to trade for a third baseman before Saturday night's non-waiver deadline. Phil Nevin, taken by the Astros as the No. 1 pick overall in the June 1992 draft, made his sixth start at third for the Padres.
  • Bagwell's homer was his 23rd on the road, setting an Astros record.
  • Elarton moved into the rotation after Sean Bergman, a former Padres pitcher, was sidelined by elbow tendinitis and eventually put on the disabled list.
  • The last time the Padres were swept in a season series was 1994, when they lost 12 straight to Montreal.

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