Expos Vazquez Beats Phils Again In 3-1 Win

In his career, Javier Vazquez is an impressive 10-4 against the Phillies after notching his latest win - a complete game - against the Phillies Friday night at The Vet. With the Expos bullpen seemingly falling apart, manager Frank Robinson let Vazquez go the distance even though his pitch count was well over the 100 mark. It turned out to be the right move as the Expos beat the Phillies 3-1.

Javier Vazquez started the second half of the season much better than he ended the first.

Vazquez snapped a six-start winless skid with his first complete game of the season as the Montreal Expos posted a 3-1 victory over the Phillies.

Without a win since June 10, Vazquez (7-6) scattered nine hits - including a solo home run by Bobby Abreu - while throwing 82 of 116 pitches for strikes. The right-hander, who recorded his career-best tenth victory over the Phillies, struck out seven without a walk.

While going the distance for the 13th time in his career, Vazquez did not reach a three-ball count until the ninth, when he went full to both Jim Thome and Abreu to open the frame.

Orlando Cabrera extended his hitting streak to a team-high 13 games and Jose Vidro had three hits and an RBI for the Expos, who won for just the third time in 11 contests.

Randy Wolf (10-5) took the loss, yielding only two runs and nine hits in six innings. The All-Star lefthander, who had won five of his previous six decisions, struck out eight without a walk.

"I thought Wolf pitched good enough to win," Phillies manager Larry Bowa said. "But the other guy pitched better."

The Expos grabbed the lead against Wolf in the first inning. With one out, Vidro extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a single before scoring on Cabrera's double to deep left-center field.

Abreu launched a 2-2 offering from Vazquez over the fence in right-center for a one out homer in the fourth inning to tie the game. It was Abreu's 67th career blast at Veterans Stadium, tying Darren Daulton for fifth place on the all-time list.

Montreal moved ahead for good in the sixth. Wil Cordero and Joe Vitiello opened the inning with singles and Michael Barrett followed with an RBI double to left for a 2-1 lead.

On the ropes, Wolf wiggled his way out of further trouble. After getting Jose Macias to ground out, Wolf got two straight comebackers to end the inning.

Marlon Byrd, who is hitting .421 (16-for-38) since being moved into the leadoff spot on July 8, started the bottom of the sixth with a double. But Vazquez caught Placido Polanco's popup on a sacrifice attempt and doubled off Byrd before striking out Thome to escape unscathed.

After replacing Vitiello in left field to start the seventh, Brad Wilkerson kept the lead intact by scooping up Tomas Perez's two-out single and firing home to get Mike Lieberthal.

The Expos added an insurance run against Turk Wendell with two outs in the ninth. Vazquez drew a walk and moved to second on Jamey Carroll's single before scoring on a ground-rule double by Vidro for a 3-1 advantage.

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