National League Roundup : Hoyt Wins Fifth in Row for Padres
Wherever the San Diego Padres go on this trip, they run into a hot team that is talking about knocking them off the top rung of the National League West.
The defending league champions have shown the ability to rise to meet the challenge. Over the weekend, it was Cincinnati that had delusions of grandeur. The Padres put down that threat by winning three out of four.
Then, Monday night, they went into Houston to meet the Astros, who had won four in a row and moved into a tie for second place.
The Padres led with their new-found ace, LaMarr Hoyt, and it was strictly no contest. Hoyt gave the Astros 11 hits, but breezed, 9-1, for his fifth victory in a row.
Hoyt, who has gone the distance in four of those wins, continued to pitch with remarkable control. He walked one Astro and has walked 10 batters in 89 innings. The 30-year-old right-hander sees similarities with 1983, when he was a 24-game and a Cy Young Award winner.
“I feel even better than I did then,” Hoyt said after running his record to 7-4. “I’m in a lot better shape and I’m in command of more of my pitches. The way this team scores for me all I have to do is keep the score down.”
Hoyt was off to a slow start. He reached bottom May 15 against St. Louis when the Cardinals clubbed him for eight hits and eight runs in slightly more than an inning. That gave him a 3-4 record.
But, in his next start, five nights later, he outpitched Dwight Gooden with a four-hit shutout and has been hot ever since.
“I kept throwing a little better, a little better and a little better,” he said. “Now, I’m really in a groove.
“I don’t really like pitching inside, though. I can’t catch the air like when I’m outside. Tonight I got winded a couple of times in the third or fourth inning, but I got stronger as the game went along.”
Tony Gwynn and Terry Kennedy provided more than enough punch for Hoyt. Both of them had three hits and both drove in two runs in the five-run third that broke the game open.
Despite the 11 hits, the Astros scored only in the sixth inning when Jerry Mumphrey hit his fourth home run of the season.
Chicago 5, Montreal 4--Going into this game at Montreal, Jeff Reardon had 17 chances to save a game for the Expos and came through every time.
His string came to an abrupt end against the hot Cubbies.
Reardon replaced Dan Schatzeder with one on and one out in the eighth and the Expos leading, 3-1. A walk, another out and a passed ball put runners on second and third. Ryne Sandberg singled to drive in two runs and tie the game. On the throw to the plate, Sandberg took second and he came home with the winning run when Keith Moreland singled.
Schatzeder gave up only two hits and struck out 10.
The fifth win in a row enabled the Cubs to stretch their lead in the East to 2 1/2 games.
Atlanta 7, San Francisco 0--It figured that when the Braves finally received a complete game from one of their pitchers, it would be at the expense of the weak-hitting Giants.
In this game at Atlanta, the Braves’ 53rd game, rookie left-hander Zane Smith (3-4) pitched a seven-hitter and struck out six. It was the fifth loss in a row for the Giants, three of them shutouts. They scored one run in each of the other two.
The Giants are the worst hitting team in the majors with a .211 average. In their last five games they have 23 hits and a .148 average.
Bob Horner, a third baseman all his career, made his debut as a first baseman. He doubled to drive in a run and later scored in the five-run first inning that made it easy for Smith.
St. Louis 6, Pittsburgh 1--Danny Cox pitched a four-hitter and singled in two runs at Pittsburgh to run his record to 7-2.
Cox, winner of four of his last five starts, was batting .069 when he bounced a single over third baseman Bill Madlock’s head in the second inning following a single by Ozzie Smith and a double by Tom Nieto.
Jack Clark hit his 12th home run for the Cardinals in the fifth, while batting and RBI leader Tommy Herr singled in a run in the first, stole second and scored on a single by Andy Van Slyke.
Philadelphia 6, New York 4--Glenn Wilson’s hot bat and the sharp pitching of John Denny featured this game at Philadelphia.
Wilson, who hit a three-run home run in the first inning Sunday, came right back to torment Sid Fernandez and the Mets. He doubled, tripled, batted in three runs and scored twice.
Denny held the Mets to seven hits and a run in eight innings to win his third game.