A.J. Burnett pitched seven innings, Damion Easley drove in three runs, and the Florida Marlins took advantage of sloppy defense by St. Louis to win, 8-2, at Miami yesterday, ending the Cardinals' seven-game winning streak.
Burnett (3-5) allowed five hits and two runs, struck out seven, and reached 100 miles per hour at least once on the radar gun.
It was perhaps his best performance since returning in June after reconstructive elbow surgery forced him to miss the 2003 season.
Larry Walker hit his first home run since joining the Cardinals last week, and his seventh of the season.
But little else went right for the Central leaders, who lost for just the sixth time since the All-Star break.
Giants 7, Pirates 0 -- Jason Schmidt pitched a four-hitter with 11 strikeouts for his NL-leading 15th win, and visiting San Francisco defeated Pittsburgh.
Edgardo Alfonzo, Marquis Grissom, and Michael Tucker each drove in two runs to help the Giants avoid a season sweep by Pittsburgh. Barry Bonds had an RBI double.
Padres 5, Cubs 4 -- Khalil Greene singled home the go-ahead run in the 11th and visiting San Diego beat Chicago to move within a game of the wild-card lead.
The Padres tied the game at 4 in the eighth on Brian Giles's RBI single off Mike Remlinger after Nomar Garciaparra hit a two-run homer in the seventh to give Chicago the lead.
Reds 6, Dodgers 5 -- D'Angelo Jimenez singled in the go-ahead run in the eighth and Cincinnati rallied past visiting Los Angeles. The Reds scored three times in the eighth off Darren Dreifort (1-3), including a two-run homer by Wily Mo Pena, his 19th.
Braves 4, Brewers 2 -- Jaret Wright won his ninth straight decision and J.D. Drew hit a go-ahead homer to help host Atlanta beat Milwaukee.
Andruw Jones and Johnny Estrada also connected off Ben Sheets (9-9), who struck out 13 after fanning 18 Braves during a game in May. Atlanta improved to 20-6 since the All-Star break.
Rockies 3, Phillies 1 -- Shawn Estes allowed one run in six innings and Royce Clayton hit a two-run homer to lead visiting Colorado, which took three of four in the series, keeping the Phillies 3 1/2 games behind Chicago in the wild-card race.
Mets 2, Astros 1 -- Astros starter Andy Pettitte allowed just one run but struggled with his control and didn't make it out of the sixth as host New York beat Houston.
Expos 7, Diamondbacks 5 -- Tony Batista hit his 20th homer and drove in four runs, leading host Montreal over Arizona to complete a three-game sweep of the Diamondbacks.