Beltran drove in three runs with two homers and Everett tied his
career high with four RBI to power the Astros to a 10-3 victory
over Arizona on Thursday, the Diamondbacks' second 11-game losing
streak this season.
"You have a good game, you feel good about yourself," Beltran
said. "I feel like I can hit, I feel like I can help the team.
Things aren't going our way right now, but we take two out of two
against Arizona, and we go home now and we look forward to winning
Everett had a two-run homer and a two-run single before getting
spiked in the eighth inning and having to leave the game. He said
he was only bruised and wouldn't miss any action.
The Astros won their second straight and third in seven games
since manager Phil Garner replaced Jimy Williams.
Arizona, winless since the All-Star break, also lost its eighth
consecutive at home -- extending a franchise record which never
exceeded five in a row until this week.
After a club-record 11-game skid from June 18-29, the
Diamondbacks rebounded with two wins but failed to save the job of
Bob Brenly, who was replaced by Al Pedrique on July 2. They have
lost 16 of 18 since then.
"We've had eight million meetings, and guys saying all kinds of
different things," said catcher Brent Mayne, who had three hits.
"I don't know how to get out of it. Nobody does. You've just got
to keep playing hard."
Roy Oswalt (9-8) picked up his fifth win in seven starts with a
five-hit, seven-inning effort. He allowed a two-run homer by Shea
Hillenbrand in the sixth and struck out seven.
"Early runs were probably the biggest thing," Oswalt said.
"Once you go ahead two or three runs, it takes a lot of pressure
Chad Qualls, called up from Triple-A New Orleans on Tuesday,
worked the eighth for Houston in his major league debut and gave up
an RBI double to Hillenbrand.
Everett homered into the left-field grandstand with two outs in
the third off Arizona rookie Edgar Gonzalez (0-2), who was making
his second start this year and fourth of his career. Beltran
followed with a shot into the right-field seats.
In the fifth, Everett singled with two outs, and Beltran made it
6-0 with a 390-foot shot to right.
Beltran, who was 3-for-4, has 10 homers in 23 games with the
Astros, and 25 overall. He had his third multihomer game this year
-- the last July 1 at the Chicago Cubs -- and has 11 in his career.
"He's going to have to come back next time and be stronger and
more aggressive with his fastball," Pedrique said about Gonzalez,
who will get another start. "He hung a couple pitches up front -- a
changeup, and then a slider, and when you're facing hitters like
(Beltran), you're going to pay."
Everett, 3-for-4, singled in the fifth and sixth, driving in two
runs against reliever Elmer Dessens with the second. His other
four-RBI game came July 9, 2003, against Cincinnati.
"The thing I liked right off the get-go today was Kent hits the
ball off the center-field wall," Garner said. "I think some of
our big guys were taking on a little too much burden, and when you
see him going toward the center of the diamond, you know he's going
to hit well."
Hillenbrand drove in Arizona's third run with a double in the
eighth. Hillenbrand spiked Everett in the knee on his slide into
second and the Astros shortstop had to leave the game.
"I was going for the ball and hit his spike and brought it
up," Everett said. "Shea and I played together, and I know he
wouldn't try to do that at all. I mean, Shea's a great dude."
Mike Lamb replaced Everett in the field, then hit a two-run
homer in the ninth to make it 10-3.
Beltran has 70 RBI, 51 with Kansas City. ... The Astros
(47-48) got within one game of .500. ... Oswalt has had a decision
in his last 14 starts (7-7). ... Edgar Gonzalez beat San Diego 10-4
in his debut June 1, 2003, lasting 5 2-3 innings and allowing three