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Another Day, Another Record for McGwire

<i> From Associated Press</i>

The fans got what they wanted and so did Mark McGwire.

McGwire hit a 449-foot home run into the Astrodome’s upper deck for his 33rd this season, setting the major league record for most homers hit through June as the visiting St. Louis Cardinals beat Houston, 7-6, Thursday night.

McGwire still has 11 games this month to add to the record, previously held by Ken Griffey Jr., who hit 32 through June in 1994.

“It’s a great honor but I can’t sit back and think about it,” McGwire said. “You’ve got to think about tomorrow. You don’t have time to think about what you’ve done.”

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Ron Gant drove in three runs to help the Cardinals take an early 5-2 lead. Ray Lankford and McGwire hit back-to-back homers in the fifth inning that chased Shane Reynolds (7-5), who lost for the first time in four home decisions.

Kent Bottenfield (2-3) got the victory and rookie Rick Croushore pitched the final two innings for his first major league save.

San Diego 7, San Francisco 6--The Padres won their 10th consecutive game when Chris Gomez tripled leading off the ninth inning and scored on Ruben Rivera’s sacrifice fly at San Francisco.

With their fourth consecutive victory within a week over the Giants, the Padres extended their longest winning streak in 20 years and opened a 4 1/2-game lead over San Francisco in the NL West. San Diego also won 10 in a row in 1978.

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Greg Vaughn hit two homers, including a game-tying, two-run shot in the eighth for San Diego. He has 24 homers.

Roberto Ramirez (1-0) pitched an inning of relief and Dan Miceli got two outs for his second save.

Chicago 12, Philadelphia 5--Brant Brown hit three home runs and drove in five runs, and Henry Rodriguez finally broke out of his slump with a two-run homer as the Cubs won at Chicago.

Jeremi Gonzalez (6-5) overcame a four-run, five-hit first inning. He gave up nine hits and five runs in six innings, and went three for three with an RBI.

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Mark Portugal (2-2) gave up 10 hits and seven runs over 5 2/3 innings for the loss.

Florida 3, Atlanta 2--Craig Counsell and Todd Zeile had run-scoring singles in the eighth inning at Atlanta and the Marlins broke an 11-game road losing streak.

Tom Glavine (9-3) failed to join teammate Greg Maddux as the NL’s second 10-game winner. He was knocked out with one out in the eighth when the Marlins strung together three singles to overcome a 2-1 deficit.

Kirt Ojala (1-0) pitched the seventh and Antonio Alfonseca got three outs for his second save.

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Arizona 4, Cincinnati 2--Arizona achieved its first three-game sweep at the expense of baseball’s oldest professional team at Cincinnati.

Brian Anderson (5-6), Arizona’s first pick in the expansion draft, gave up only two hits over seven shutout innings and scored twice with aggressive baserunning.

Scott Klingenbeck (1-2) took the loss.

Montreal 7, New York 6--Vladimir Guerrero homered, doubled, and scored twice and Rondell White homered for the second consecutive game as the Expos held on at Montreal.

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Shayne Bennett (2-3) relieved starter Javier Vazquez in the sixth and got the victory. Ugueth Urbina pitched the ninth for his 17th save.

Masato Yoshii (4-3) was the loser.

Pittsburgh 1, Milwaukee 0--Tony Womack’s bloop RBI single off Doug Jones (3-4) in the seventh inning lifted the Pirates to a victory over the Brewers at Milwaukee in a game delayed nearly three hours by rain.

Elmer Dessens (2-1) pitched three innings of one-hit ball after entering following the delay.

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