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Schilling Gets to 18th Win in a Hurry

July 28, 2002|From Associated Press

Starting in spring training, Curt Schilling wanted to bring maximum focus into every start.

He has done that, and more.

Schilling became the fastest pitcher to reach 18 victories in 26 years when he defeated the San Diego Padres, 4-3, Saturday at Phoenix, leading the Arizona Diamondbacks to their sixth consecutive victory.

Randy Jones was the last pitcher to win 18 games before Aug. 1, doing it for San Diego in 1976 en route to winning the Cy Young Award.

"I've said it all year and I'm going to keep saying it: We're playing fantastic baseball on the days that I pitch," Schilling said. "Today we played some unbelievable defense."

Erubiel Durazo, activated from the disabled list hours earlier, homered in his first game this month and was in on several strong fielding plays.

Luis Gonzalez drove in his 77th run with a groundout before Durazo hit his ninth homer in 94 at-bats this year, a three-run drive during a four-run fifth.

Schilling (18-3) gave up one run and eight hits in eight innings, earning his 12th consecutive victory over a division opponent and improving to 16-1 against NL teams.

He has won six consecutive starts, giving him 150 career victories.

The right-hander struck out seven and has 212, best in the majors. He did not walk a batter, leaving him with only 18 walks in 169 2/3 innings.

Schilling has a 2.86 earned-run average and four more victories than any other pitcher in the majors.

"It's just phenomenal," Arizona Manager Bob Brenly said. "He doesn't beat himself, he doesn't walk anybody, he's extremely quick to the plate--you can't run on him. Depending on what he's got working on a given day, he can go at you in a variety of ways."

Atlanta 5, Philadelphia 3--Chipper Jones hit a home run at Atlanta, and Greg Maddux bounced back from his first loss in nearly three months.

Maddux (10-3) gave up one earned run in 5 2/3 innings to end Philadelphia's four-game winning streak and hand Joe Roa (0-1) his first defeat this season at any level. Roa had a 14-0 record at triple-A.

It was Maddux's 267th victory, giving him sole possession of 31st place on the all-time list.

Chicago 7, St. Louis 3--Kerry Wood gave up one unearned run in six innings at St. Louis and Moises Alou had three runs batted in to help the Cubs end a four-game skid.

Wood (9-5) gave up four hits, walked one and struck out three before leaving after 87 pitches in the 95-degree heat.

The Cubs scored four runs against Jason Simontacchi (7-2) in the third inning, with the help of a hit batter, two walks and Todd Hundley's 10th homer.

Cincinnati 2, New York 1--Pinch-hitter Todd Walker hit a one-out run-scoring single in the top of the 11th inning to lift the Reds.

Walker lined a 2-and-2 pitch from rookie Jaime Cerda to center to score Austin Kearns, who had doubled against Mark Corey (0-3) to start the inning.

Florida 7, Montreal 2--Charles Johnson's three-run homer capped a five-run first inning at Montreal, and A.J. Burnett struck out a career-high 12 batters.

Burnett (10-7) gave up two runs and five hits in eight innings.

A crowd of 19,373, the fourth-largest Olympic Stadium crowd this season, showed up for discount tickets and a hot dog promotion.

Houston 3, Pittsburgh 0--Roy Oswalt pitched eight scoreless innings at Houston and the Astros shut out the Pirates for the second time in three games.

Oswalt (11-6) gave up four hits, struck out nine and walked one. Billy Wagner struck out the side in order in the ninth for his 20th save in 25 opportunities.

Milwaukee 6, Colorado 5--Alex Ochoa's run-scoring bloop single in the 10th inning at Milwaukee sent the Rockies to their fifth consecutive defeat.

Izzy Alcantara hit a one-out single against Jose Jimenez (2-7) in the 10th, and pinch-runner Eric Young moved to third on Jose Hernandez's single to right. Ochoa followed with a hit to right field.

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