In 41 straight save chances, Trevor Hoffman had been perfect. Then on one pitch, his streak ended and so did his bid to set a major league record.
The San Diego closer gave up a home run to Moises Alou on his first delivery in the ninth inning Sunday, tying the game. The Padres wound up beating Houston 5-4 in the 10th, but Hoffman blew his chance at history.Hoffman entered the game to the loud sounds of AC/DC's "Hell's Bells" playing over the public address system, just as he did Saturday when he matched the consecutive save record of 41 set by San Francisco's Rod Beck from 1993-95.
After the music, most of the 41,034 fans stood to cheer for Hoffman. There was just silence, however, after Alou connected for his 25th homer of the season to tie it at 4.
Hoffman, who had recorded 33 saves this season, had not blown a save chance since last Aug. 22.
The Padres won in the 10th on Andy Sheets' RBI single with two outs off Mike Magnante (3-5). Donne Wall (4-2) picked up the victory.
GIANTS 2, REDS 1 : Jeff Kent hit reliever Stan Belinda's second pitch for a home run in the 10th inning, giving the San Francisco Giants a victory over the Cincinnati Reds.
After Cincinnati's Brett Tomko two-hit the Giants over a career-best nine innings, Belinda (4-7) allowed Kent's fourth homer in three games and 13th of the year, a drive into the left-field bleachers.
Jose Mesa (1-0) struck out the side in the 10th for his first victory since joining San Francisco on Friday. It also marked the first series the slumping Giants have won since the All-Star break.
CUBS 3, METS 1: Sammy Sosa hit his 38th homer and Kerry Wood remained unbeaten at Wrigley Field as the Chicago Cubs downed the New York Mets, giving them a 31/2-game lead in the NL wild-card race.
With the Cubs trailing 1-0 in the sixth, Sosa drove a 2-2 pitch from Rick Reed (11-7) into the shrubbery beyond the center-field wall, following a one-out walk to Jose Hernandez.
Wood (10-5) allowed four hits in seven innings and ran his home record to 7-0 in nine career starts at Wrigley. The rookie walked three, struck out six and gave up Brian McRae's 15th homer in the third.
PHILLIES 10, MARLINS 9: Rico Brogna hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth inning and the Philadelphia Phillies rallied from an early seven-run deficit to beat the Florida Marlins.
Todd Zeile's two-run homer and RBI single helped the Marlins take a 7-0 in the third inning. But the Phillies struck for their 32nd comeback win of the season, including their second victory after trailing by seven runs.
Philadelphia won three of four games in the series, all three by comeback. Scott Rolen homered and drove in four runs for the Phillies.
BRAVES 2, PIRATES 1: Greg Maddux extended his four-year winning streak against Pittsburgh, repeatedly squirming out of jams before Andres Galarraga's go-ahead single in the eighth inning gave the Atlanta Braves a victory.
Maddux (14-4), who had lost two of his previous three decisions, made certain he didn't lose consecutive starts for the first time this season by limiting the Pirates to a run on four hits in 7 2-3 innings.
Maddux improved to 5-0 in nine starts since last losing to Pittsburgh on April 30, 1994.
BREWERS 6, EXPOS 5: Bob Hamelin and Jeff Cirillo hit home runs and Darrin Jackson doubled home the tiebreaking run in the eighth inning, lifting the Milwaukee Brewers over the Montreal Expos.
The Brewers overcame an injury to starting pitcher Cal Eldred. He left the game because of a strained right arm after throwing one warmup pitch before the second inning.
With the score 5-all in the eighth, Jeromy Burnitz drew a one-out walk from Shayne Bennett (3-4), moved up on a groundout and scored on Jackson's drive to right-center field.
RED SOX 6, BLUE JAYS 3: Nomar Garciaparra hit a three-run inside-the-park homer, and Pedro Martinez pitched seven scoreless innings Sunday to lead the Boston Red Sox over the Toronto Blue Jays.
Martinez (14-3) gave up six hits and one walk, he struck out six and allowed only two batters as far as third base before leaving with a 5-0 lead. He won for the eighth time in nine starts.
Pat Hentgen (9-8) allowed five runs on 10 hits and two walks in seven innings. He lost his fourth straight decision.
ROYALS 9, ANGELS 4: Jose Offerman extended his hitting streak to a career-high 15 games with a single during a five-run first inning and the Kansas City Royals beat the Anaheim Angels.
Offerman doubled, singled twice, walked and scored twice. He has reached base in 16 of his last 22 plate appearances. Dean Palmer and Jeff Conine each drove in two runs for the Royals.
The AL West-leading Angels fell to 7-15 in July. Anaheim's Garret Anderson stretched his career-high hitting streak to 23 games - one behind Boston's Nomar Garciaparra for the longest in the AL this season.
TWINS 11, RANGERS 3: Todd Walker kept up his tear with four more hits, including a three-run homer, and the Minnesota Twins beat the Texas Rangers for their first three-game sweep of the season.
Walker, who has reached base in his last 10 plate appearances, finished the six-game homestand 15-for-20 and raised his average to .352.
Marty Cordova homered and drove in four runs for Minnesota.
Juan Gonzalez hit his 31st homer, a two-run shot in the Texas sixth. His only hit of the series increased his major league-leading RBIs total to 116.
LaTroy Hawkins (7-9) was the winner and Rick Helling (13-6) took the loss.
YANKEES 6, WHITE SOX 3: Bernie Williams' tiebreaking solo homer triggered a three-run sixth inning that carried the New York Yankees over the Chicago White Sox.
David Wells (12-2) allowed three runs and seven hits with 10 strikeouts in 7 2-3 innings, improving to 8-0 in 10 starts at home. New York is 73-26, the best 99-game start ever for a Yankees team. They are one win off the pace of the 1902 Pittsburgh Pirates for the best start this century.
Scott Brosius added a two-run single in the sixth to make it 6-3 and finish off White Sox right-hander Jamie Navarro (8-12).
Albert Belle hit his 31st home run for the White Sox. Jorge Posada hit a two-run homer for New York.
MARINERS 10, ORIOLES 4: Ken Griffey Jr. stole a career-high three bases and scored three runs as the Seattle Mariners handed the Baltimore Orioles their second straight loss.
Griffey went 1-for-2 with three walks but did not homer for a third straight game and remained at 40 for the season. He had 10 steals in 12 attempts before having a perfect day against Baltimore catcher Lenny Webster.
David Segui went 4-for-5 with two RBIs and the Mariners scored five unearned runs en route to their ninth win in 12 games. Seattle won the series 2-1 to end the Orioles' string of five straight series wins.
B.J. Surhoff homered for the Orioles, who won 14 of 15 before losing successive games for the first time since the All-Star break.
TIGERS 8, INDIANS 1: Switch-hitter Tony Clark hit home runs from both sides of the plate to help Brian Moehler earn a rare road victory as the Detroit Tigers beat the Cleveland Indians.
Moehler (11-7) allowed one run in 6 2-3 innings. The right-hander, 9-0 at home, improved to 2-7 on the road.
Dwight Gooden (3-6) lost his third straight start.
DEVIL RAYS 3, ATHLETICS 1: Wilson Alvarez won for the first time in over two months and Fred McGriff hit a two-run homer as the Tampa Bay Devil Rays equaled a season-best four-game winning streak with a victory over the Oakland Athletics.
McGriff's third-inning shot off Tom Candiotti (5-13) broke a 1-1 tie. Alvarez (5-8) allowed one run and three hits in seven innings.
Mike Blowers snapped an 0-for-27 slump with a second-inning homer as the A's matched a season-worst six-game losing skid.
Esteban Yan pitched two perfect innings for his first career save.