WEAU | Eau Claire, Wisconsin | Sports

Sheets Shuts Down Stros

Ben Sheets won his fifth consecutive decision, Prince Fielder hit his NL-leading 27th homer and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Houston Astros 6-1 on Monday night.

The NL Central-leading Brewers have won 10 of 12 since being no-hit by the Tigers' Justin Verlander on June 12. The Astros, on the last leg of a nine-game road trip, have lost five of their last seven.

Sheets (9-3) allowed five hits and three walks in six innings. He's allowed three runs or fewer in each of his last 13 starts and has won five straight decisions for the first time since 2001, his rookie year.

The two-time All-Star is 4-0 with a 1.66 ERA in five June starts.
Fielder led off the eighth with a 434-foot shot to deep center field to give Milwaukee a 4-1 lead. It was Fielder's first home run in a week, and his eighth in June.

Sheets wasn't nearly as efficient as his last start, a complete game against the Giants, but still located his 94 mph fastball and big curve well enough to strike out five.

His lone mistake was to former teammate Carlos Lee, who hit his 13th homer over the Brewers' bullpen to cut Milwaukee's lead to 3-1 in the sixth.

Lee, who pumped his fist the dugout afterward, was booed loudly as he rounded the bases. He was dealt to Texas last season in a package that included Kevin Mench and Francisco Cordero, and signed a six-year, $100-million contract with Houston in the offseason.

Before Lee's homer, Sheets had allowed only one base runner to reach scoring position when counterpart Jason Jennings singled in the second to put runners on first and third with two outs.

But shortstop J.J. Hardy got Sheets out of trouble by bare-handing Mark Loretta's slow roller and making an accurate throw to first to end the inning.

In the third, the Brewers made it 3-0 with two runs off Jennings (1-2) on Corey Hart's RBI single that extended his career-best hitting streak to 12 games and Ryan Braun's run-scoring double.

Hardy returned to the lineup after missing the previous three games with stiffness in his lower back and hit a solo home run in the first, his 18th homer this season, but only his third in June.

Jennings, who has missed a majority of the season with elbow tendinitis, loaded the bases in the seventh, but got out of it to end his night. He allowed five hits, four walks and struck out five.

Johnny Estrada doubled in a run and Tony Graffanino added a sacrifice fly in the eighth to give Milwaukee a 5-1 lead.


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