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Rookie Robertson collects 14th win

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Jeriome Robertson took over after the Houston
Astros gave him an early lead.

Robertson won his 14th game, the most among rookies the season,
and the Astros regained sole possession of first place in the NL
Central by beating the Milwaukee Brewers 3-1 Wednesday night.

"He pitched well tonight," Jeff Bagwell said. "We needed it.
We got the three in the first, but didn't do anything else after
that."

Houston had been tied for the lead since Monday with the Chicago
Cubs, who lost 8-4 to the Montreal Expos.

Since July 8, the Astros have been either in alone or tied for
first place except for only four games when they slipped to second
place.

"You have to be concerned with what you do with your own
team," said Bagwell, who walked and scored the Astros' first run.
"You can't worry about what anybody else did. We go out and win
games. We're doing what we're supposed to be doing.

"It's good to be back in first place, but we got to keep
going."

Robertson (14-7) matched the Astros' rookie record for wins, set
when Roy Oswalt went 14-3 two years ago, and sent Milwaukee to its
sixth straight loss.

"I went out there and tried to locate my pitches, nothing
spectacular," Roberston said.

He worked out of bases-loaded jam in the second and allowed his
only run when Eddie Perez homered on his first pitch in the fifth
inning.

"Fortunately, we pitched good enough and played good enough
defense that those runs held up," Astros manager Jimmy Williams
said.

Houston turned two double plays to back up their pitchers.

Robertson left after walking Perez leading off the seventh. He
allowed six hits, struck out five and walked three, winning for the
fourth time in his last five starts.

Mike Gallo took over for Robertson and allowed just one hit in 1
1-3 innings of relief.

After Milwaukee had runners at first and second with one out in
the eighth, Kirk Bullinger took over and retired the last two
batters.

Billy Wagner pitched a perfect ninth for his 41st save in 44
chances, completing a seven-hitter.

"The bullpen did a nice job, and, of course, Wagner at the
end," Bagwell said.

Luis Martinez (0-1), making his second career start, gave up
three runs, five hits and seven walks in five innings. He made his
big league debut Sept. 3 against Cincinnati, giving up three runs,
six hits and five walks in four innings.

Martinez pitched well after the first inning, but the rocky
start was too much to overcome.

"He's not trying to be too fine, but when he misses (the
plate), he misses a long ways," Brewers manager Ned Yost said.
"He held them down after the first inning."

Bagwell walked with two outs in the first, and the Astros loaded
the bases when Jeff Kent hit his 400th career double and Richard
Hidalgo was walked intentionally.

Lance Berkman walked on a 3-1 pitch, forcing in a run, and Raul
Chavez followed with a two-run single. Martinez threw 31 pitches in
the inning, just 12 for strikes.

Game notes
Scott Podsednik was caught stealing in the first, snapping
his streak of 14 consecutive stolen bases. Geoff Jenkins had 14
straight stolen bases during a stretch of the 1999 and 2000
seasons. ... The Brewers are 2-7 during a 10-game homestand. ...
Perez's 10 homers are a career high. ... Richie Sexson had three
hits.