Beckett pitches solid six, drives in run

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- With the way Josh Beckett was pitching, Jack
McKeon had no intention of taking him out for a pinch hitter in the
sixth inning.

Beckett pitched six strong innings for his first victory in over
three months and drove in his first run of the season with an RBI
double, leading the Marlins to an 8-2 victory over the San Diego
Padres on Saturday night.

"I just had a feeling that he'd get a hit. That's why I let him
bat," McKeon said. "Even if we didn't score then, I figured we'd
still get two more good innings out of him."

Beckett (5-7) allowed two runs on six hits, struck out six and
walked three in his first win since May 20.

"It's nice to get a win," Beckett said. "But I'm worried more
about us getting wins as a team."

The Marlins' biggest star during last year's World Series run
has had a tough season. He was 0-4 in his previous eight starts,
and went on the disabled list during that span for the third time
this season -- from July 6-29 -- with a skin tear on his middle right

"I pitched well enough to win my last three starts," Beckett
said. "But I wasn't fortunate in that things happened. I made a
couple of mistakes that cost us runs."

McKeon credited Beckett with a line of strong starts.

"He's pitched good even when he's been beat," McKeon said.
"He's kept the score down and given us a chance. He's been pretty
much consistent."

Juan Pierre and Jeff Conine homered and Miguel Cabrera tied his
career high with four hits for the Marlins.

"To extend the lead in these kind of games is very important
right now," said Conine, who hit a three-run blast in the seventh
for his 10th homer. "We've got to win them all. That's got to be
our attitude."

The Marlins took a 4-2 lead in the sixth. Juan Encarnacion led
off with his second double of the game. Adam Eaton struck out the
next two batters before Beckett doubled.

"He hit my bat (with the pitch)," Beckett said. "I don't
claim to be a good hitter. I got lucky and put it where they

Pierre followed with his third homer of the season.

"With Beckett, it was a cutter that didn't move too much,"
Eaton said. "And obviously an inside fastball to Pierre, and I
didn't get it in at all."

Eaton (8-11) gave up five runs -- four earned -- and 11 hits in
six-plus innings for his third straight loss to the Marlins.

"When you're going against Beckett, you're going to have to
play your best ball and pitch well," Padres manager Bruce Bochy
said. "We just let it get away there."

Conine added a three-run homer off Blaine Neal in the seventh to
make it 7-2.

Paul Lo Duca's RBI single in the eighth gave Florida an 8-2

The Marlins scored an unearned run in the third to go up 1-0.

After a one-out single by Lo Duca, center fielder Freddy Guzman
misplayed a single by Cabrera, who went 4-for-5, to put runners at
second and third. Lo Duca then scored on a groundout by Mike

Guzman responded by scoring the tying run in the bottom of the
third, when he hit his second single of the game and came home on a
two-out double by Brian Giles.

Khalil Greene's 10th homer of the season put the Padres ahead
2-1 in the fourth.

Game notes
Eaton has given up a team-high 24 homers on the season,
including nine in his last five starts. ... Guzman singled in the
first inning to extend his hitting streak to four games, dating to
when he was promoted on Tuesday from Triple-A Portland. ... The
Padres' Mark Loretta was hit near his left elbow by the first pitch
that he faced. He remained in the game after being examined by
assistant trainer Jim Daniel. ... The Padres set a Petco Park
record for single-game attendance with a crowd of 44,149, their
20th sellout of the season. ... RHP Steve Watkins made his major
league debut for the Padres in the eighth.