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

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.