Phillies edge Astros to win sixth straight game


PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Randy Wolf got aggressive to try and
overcome a bad start to his season.

Pitching ahead in the count, Wolf allowed two hits in seven
innings and pinch-hitter Tomas Perez hit a two-run double in the
seventh to lead the Philadelphia Phillies to their sixth straight
win, 3-1 win over the Houston Astros on Wednesday night.

"I wanted to throw strikes tonight," said Wolf, who threw 19
first-pitch strikes to the 22 batters he faced. "I figured if I
was going to have a bad game I do it by getting ahead of the

Wolf, who went 1-1 with a 7.09 ERA in his first five starts,
helped the Phillies sweep Houston at home for the first time since
July 1985.

"I've really been disappointed with the way I've pitched
lately," Wolf said. "I didn't feel like I was that far away and
that was frustrating. I needed a game like tonight."

Wolf (2-1) retired the first 13 batters until Richard Hidalgo
singled with one out in the fifth inning. Hidalgo was then forced
out at second as the front end of a double play.

Wolf allowed one run, struck out four and didn't walk a batter.
The only run came on Jeff Bagwell's solo homer with two outs in the

"He made one mistake and it might not have been that big a
mistake," Phillies manager Larry Bowa said. "Everyone in the
organization tells me he's a slow starter. I hope he's gotten it
out of the way."

Jose Mesa pitched the ninth for his 11th save.

Mlicki (3-4) gave up three runs, six hits and three walks in 6
1-3 innings. He had allowed only one run before running into
trouble in the seventh.

Mike Lieberthal led off with a walk and Ricky Ledee followed
with an infield single that slammed off Mlicki's foot.

A sacrifice by Marlon Anderson moved the runners to second and
third. Perez then doubled down the right-field line to make it 3-1.

"Mlicki pitched well, we're just not swinging the bats," said
Astros manager Jimy Williams, who added that the team "will break
out of it. We've got too many good hitters."

The Phillies scored the game's first run in the third. Wolf led
off the inning with a walk and went to third on a double by Jimmy
Rollins and scored on a groundout by Bobby Abreu.

Game notes
Perez is 4-for-8 with five RBI this season with runners in
scoring position. ... Houston placed RHP Hipolito Pichardo on the
restricted list as the hurler plans to retire because of right
elbow problems. The Astros recalled outfielder Jason Lane from
Triple-A New Orleans. ... Houston's Craig Biggio singled in the
ninth inning to break an 0-for-20 stretch. ... Before this series,
the Astros were 12-4 in Philadelphia dating back to 1998. ... The
back-to-back sweep of three-game series with the Astros and
Colorado is the Phillies' first since 1998 when they swept
back-to-back three-game sets from Milwaukee and Pittsburgh.