Final

Series: Game 1 of 4

Arizona leads 1-0 (as of 7/26)

Game 1: Monday, July 26
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Houston1
Game 2: Tuesday, July 27
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Game 3: Wednesday, July 28
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Game 4: Thursday, July 29
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Diamondbacks 4

(32-69, 16-32 away)

Astros 1

(49-50, 25-26 home)

    8:05 PM ET, July 26, 2004

    Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas 

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    W: B. Webb (4-11)

    L: A. Pettitte (6-4)

    S: G. Aquino (1)

    Pettitte leaves early as Arizona wins at last

    HOUSTON (AP) -- Luis Gonzalez and the Arizona Diamondbacks finally have something to feel good about.

    The Houston Astros, however, are worried about Andy Pettitte's elbow again.

    The Diamondbacks snapped their club-record 14-game losing streak Monday night, beating Houston 4-1 behind Brandon Webb's pitching and Scott Hairston's hitting.

    "It's been stressful. We're major leaguers, and we don't like being embarrassed. It's been a long time," Gonzalez said. "Anytime you lose 14 games in a row, it's not fun. We all made mistakes, and we all shared in the frustration. None of us wanted to be embarrassed by losing any more games."

    Pettitte came out after the fifth inning because of his troublesome left elbow, which has sent him to the disabled list twice this season.

    "I aggravated it again a little bit. We're going to see how it feels the next couple of days and hopefully I'll be able to make my next start," Pettitte said. "It's the same thing, the flexor tendon in my elbow, but it's not as bad as it was before. I threw a backdoor cutter to [Alex] Cintron in the fourth, and that is when I first felt it."

    Pettitte (6-4) gave up three hits, including consecutive homers to Hairston and Gonzalez in the first inning. The left-hander struck out four and walked none before leaving with a sore elbow.

    Pettitte was on the disabled list April 7-29 with a left elbow strain and again May 27-June 28 with a left forearm strain. He has been limited to just 13 starts since signing with Houston in the offseason.

    "I really felt good after those home runs. I was really putting it where I wanted to. I think I'll be able to make my next start. We are at a point where I need to pitch," Pettitte said.

    Pettitte will be examined by a doctor Tuesday to determine the extent of the injury.

    "He said that he felt something when we came out to talk to him in the fifth, but he said he thought he could get through the inning. We didn't want him to push it. He probably could have gone back out," Houston manager Phil Garner said. "I know he has had trouble with it in the past, but let's wait and see what the doctor says."

    The Diamondbacks won for the first time since beating San Francisco on July 8. Arizona, which went 0-11 on a homestand that ended Sunday, improved to 5-30 since June 18.

    "Everybody has been playing hard. It would be different if we had just been throwing our gloves out there," Hairston said. "It's tough to swallow losing 14 in a row, but tonight we put it all together."

    Webb (4-11) ended his six-game losing streak, holding Houston to one run and six hits in 7 1/3 innings. He threw a season-high 124 pitches, striking out five and walking four.

    "Tonight it seemed like I got stronger each inning. Now maybe we can get back on track," Webb said.

    Webb earned the respect of Garner.

    "The kid has got good stuff. His ball does funny things. I'm not even sure that he knows what it's going to do," Garner said. "You can't get in a pattern with him. We would get a runner on base but we couldn't get a lock on him."

    Stephen Randolph got two outs in the eighth, and Greg Aquino pitched a perfect ninth for his first career save.

    The Diamondbacks took a 2-0 lead in the first when Hairston and Gonzalez hit back-to-back homers. It was the sixth of the season for Hairston and the 17th for Gonzalez.

    Hairston finished 4-for-4, a career high for hits. Danny Bautista added a two-run single off Dan Miceli in the ninth.

    "This is the first time as a professional that I've gotten four hits, even in the minors. Tonight was special. I'll never forget tonight," Hairston said.

    Houston cut its deficit to 2-1 in the fifth when Carlos Beltran singled, stole second, moved to third on a groundball and scored on a single by Jeff Kent.

    Game notes


    Houston's Lance Berkman reached base in 10 consecutive at-bats before grounding out in the fifth inning. ... Arizona is 7-28 against left-handed starters. ... The Diamondbacks hit back-to-back home runs for the fourth time this season.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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