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National League Roundup : Expos’ Mickey Mahler Stops Giants on One Hit in First Start Since 1979

Mickey Mahler, in his first major league start in six years, missed a no-hitter by the barest of margins Wednesday at San Francisco.

The only hit Mahler allowed was an infield single to Dan Gladden in the third inning while pitching the Montreal Expos to a 6-0 victory over the Giants.

Shortstop U. L. Washington fielded Gladden’s grounder in the hole between second and third, and his throw to first just failed to beat the Giant outfielder.

Mahler, 32, the older brother of Atlanta’s Rick Mahler, spent most of the last five seasons in the minors. The Expos brought him up last week from Indianapolis of the American Assn. after he compiled a 4-1 record. In three innings of relief Sunday against the Dodgers--his first appearance in the majors since late 1982, when he was a relief pitcher for the Angels--he gave up three unearned runs.

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In a National League career that began at Atlanta in 1977, Mahler had a 10-24 record and no shutouts. His last previous victory as a starter came at Candlestick Park on May 28, 1979.

“I owe a lot to the people in the Montreal organization who gave me the opportunity to pitch again in the majors,” Mahler said. “I felt I had a lot to prove to the clubs that didn’t keep me.

“No matter what I do from now on, they can’t take away the game I just pitched. It sure felt good to get back to wonderful Candlestick Park.”

Mahler walked two, struck out six and didn’t permit a runner past first base.

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“He sure made us look bad, didn’t he?” Gladden said.

Mahler went up against Mike Krukow, who had a 1.78 earned-run average going in and a 2.26 going out. In 3 innings, Krukow (4-4) gave up five runs and seven hits.

The Expos pounded out 12 hits. Terry Francona had three singles and drove in three runs. Tim Raines had two singles and scored three runs.

Atlanta 4, Chicago 2--Amid reports that Phil Niekro, currently pitching for the New York Yankees, will replace Eddie Haas as manager, the Braves are just trying to escape the cellar.

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At least, momentarily, the Braves are out of last place in the West because of the hitting of Rafael Ramirez. In this game at Chicago, Ramirez, not noted for his slugging, drove in all four runs, climaxing his effort with a two-run home run in the 11th inning.

“We don’t know what’s going on,” Ramirez said. “We just go out there and do the best we can.”

It was the second home run of the season for Ramirez, who doubled home two runs in the third. Ron Cey’s two-run home run tied it in the fifth. It was Cey’s 11th home run and sixth in the last 13 games.

San Diego 3, Philadelphia 1--Terry Kennedy doubled in two runs in the sixth inning at San Diego to bring the Padres from behind, and LaMarr Hoyt pitched a four-hitter for his fourth win in a row.

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Hoyt struck out a career-high nine and did not walk a batter. The only Phillie run was unearned.

Steve Garvey hit his ninth home run for the Padres’ final run.

Cincinnati 11, Pittsburgh 9--Alan Knicely hit a three-run home run in the sixth inning at Cincinnati to climax a comeback that gave the surprising Reds their fourth win in a row and their sixth in the last seven games.

New Pirate shortstop Johnnie LeMaster hit a two-run home run to highlight a six-run third inning that gave the Pirates an early 8-5 lead.

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Player-Manager Pete Rose had only one hit, but he also walked and reached first base on a fielder’s choice, and scored three runs.

Houston 8, St. Louis 3--The Astros kept the Cardinal speedsters, Vince Coleman and Willie McGee, off the bases at St. Louis and had little trouble winning.

On Tuesday night, the two swifties were on base nine times to spark the Cardinals. In this one, Coleman had a double in the three-run sixth inning, but that was the only time either was on base.

The Astros hammered Danny Cox out in the sixth and ended his five-game winning streak. Mark Bailey hit a two-run home run and Enos Cabell hit a two-run pinch double to lead the Astros.

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