Greg Maddux and the Atlanta Braves are putting it all together at the same time.
Maddux pitched seven sharp innings to win his third consecutive decision and Gary Sheffield hit a two-run single, and the Braves defeated the Houston Astros, 3-1, Tuesday night at Houston.
The Braves have won 12 of 14 following a 4-8 start, and Maddux also has recovered nicely.
“I felt like I got away with a lot of mistakes the first couple of innings,” he said. “But I pitched better the last couple of innings. The first couple of games, it seemed like they whacked it pretty good. Since then I’ve been catching some breaks.”
The right-hander lost his first three starts for the first time in his career. But he held Houston to one run and five hits.
John Smoltz worked the ninth for his 10th save in as many tries and 26th in a row dating to last season. He struck out Brad Ausmus with two runners for the final out.
St. Louis 13, New York 3 -- Matt Morris (2-2) gave up two runs and five hits in six innings, and Scott Rolen and Edgar Renteria each drove in four runs at St. Louis.
Mike Piazza had three hits for the Mets, who have lost three in a row.
Montreal 3, Milwaukee 2 -- Brian Schneider hit a tiebreaking infield single with one out in the ninth inning at Milwaukee.
Brad Wilkerson homered and scored the go-ahead run and starter Javier Vazquez struck out 12 in seven innings for the Expos.
Colorado 10, Cincinnati 5 -- Jason Jennings (2-3) overcame a shaky fourth inning at Denver and Preston Wilson homered and drove in four runs for the Rockies.
Sean Casey homered twice and had three hits for the Reds, who had only four other hits.
Florida 7, Arizona 5 -- Mark Redman had a shutout for seven innings and Alex Gonzalez hit a three-run home run to lift the Marlins at Phoenix.
Pittsburgh 7, San Diego 2 -- Jeff D’Amico (2-2) gave up one run and five hits in six innings at San Diego, and the Pirates ended a five-game losing streak by scoring more than three runs for only the fourth time this season.