Clemens suffers groin injury

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, May 25, 2005

With Roger Clemens forced from the game by a groin injury, theHouston Astros’ bullpen blew the lead.

Jeromy Burnitz hit a two-run, bases-loaded single with two outsin the eighth inning off Brad Lidge, and the Chicago Cubs beatHouston 4-2 on Tuesday night to send the last-place Astros to theirseventh straight loss.

Clemens shut out Chicago for five innings on two hits beforeleaving with tightness in his groin. He struck out six and walkedone at Wrigley Field, lowering his major league-best ERA to1.19.

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”It’s more than a mild strain, but I know my body and I didn’ttear it,” Clemens said. ”I’m OK. It’s iced down and numb andwe’ll start treating it tomorrow.”

Houston, 2-21 on the road this year, has scored two runs orfewer in seven of 10 starts this season by the seven-time Cy YoungAward winner, who has pitched 26 consecutive scoreless innings onthe road. The Astros dropped 14 games back of NL Central-leadingSt. Louis.

”Right now, as starters, we have to approach every situationlike it’s the bottom of the ninth,” Clemens said.

In other NL games, it was: Cincinnati 4, Washington 3 in 14innings; St. Louis 2, Pittsburgh 1 in 12 innings; Florida 4,Philadelphia 3 in 10 innings; Atlanta 4, New York 0; San Francisco5, Los Angeles 3; San Diego 9, Arizona 5; and Milwaukee 6, Colorado1.

At Chicago, Michael Wuertz (3-2) got the win by striking out twoto end Houston’s scoring threat in the eighth, and Ryan Dempsterpitched the ninth for his fourth save.

Lidge (1-2) threw two wild pitches and walked two in blowing thesave.

Braves 4, Mets 0

Pitching on three days’ rest, Tim Hudson (5-3) allowed six hitsin eight innings. Johnny Estrada had three hits for the Braves, wholed 1-0 before scoring three runs in the seventh.

At Turner Field, Tom Glavine (3-5) dropped to 1-8 against hisformer team, giving up four runs and seven hits in 6 2-3innings.

Reds 4, Nationals 3, 14 innings

Randy Keisler (1-0) pitched two innings and lifted the Reds inthe 14th with his first career hit and RBI.

Keisler, called up from the minors Monday, had to bat withrunners at second and third and one out because the Reds had runout of position players in a game that lasted 4 hours, 20 minutes.With the infield in, Keisler got a grounder past shortstop JameyCarroll to drive in the game-winning run.

Luis Ayala (2-3) allowed three hits in 2 1-3 innings forvisiting Washington.

Cardinals 2, Pirates 1, 12 innings

Yadier Molina hit a game-winning single in the 12th off JoseMesa (0-4), and St. Louis won its 11th straight against visitingPittsburgh.

Manager Tony La Russa won his 823rd game with the Cardinals,passing Whitey Herzog for second place on the franchise list. LaRussa is 218 victories behind franchise leader RedSchoendienst.

Al Reyes (2-0) had two strikeouts and a walk in 1 2-3 inningsfor the Cardinals, who lost Albert Pujols in the sixth when theslugger was ejected for arguing a called third strike.

Marlins 4, Phillies 3, 10 innings

Damion Easley hit a tying homer off Billy Wagner with two outsin the ninth, and Carlos Delgado had a winning RBI double againstAmaury Telemaco (0-1) in the 10th as Florida rallied from a 3-0deficit against visiting Philadelphia. The Marlins have won sixstraight.

John Riedling (2-0), the fourth Florida pitcher, got thewin.

Giants 5, Dodgers 3

Jason Schmidt (2-2), sidelined since May 10 with a strainedright shoulder, allowed three runs and five hits in five inningsand homered.

Mike Matheny added a three-run homer after failing to get down abunt attempt and Edgardo Alfonzo had three hits and drove in a runas San Francisco won its third straight. Tyler Walker got two outsin the ninth for his seventh save.

Jeff Weaver (4-4) gave up five runs and eight hits in threeinnings for visiting Los Angeles.

Padres 9, Diamondbacks 5

Phil Nevin homered and San Diego’s Adam Eaton (7-1) extended hiscareer-best winning streak to six games, allowing three runs andnine hits in 5 2-3 innings.

Ramon Hernandez had a two-run double, Robert Fick homered andDave Roberts hit two triples for the Padres. Trevor Hoffman got oneout for his 14th save.

Russ Ortiz (4-3) allowed four runs, four hits and six walks insix innings for visiting Arizona.

Brewers 6, Rockies 1

Carlos Lee homered and drove in four runs for the Brewers, andVictor Santos (2-4) stopped his four-game losing streak by allowingone run and six hits in six innings for his first win at Milwaukeesince Sept. 21.

Jeff Francis (4-2) allowed six runs and nine hits in 5 1-3innings.