Loss to Houston costs D-backs NL West leadPosted: Updated:
HOUSTON -- Roy Oswalt allowed one hit in eight innings and struck out 10, outpitching Randy Johnson in the Houston Astros' 3-0 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.
Ty Wigginton hit a three-run homer off Johnson in the first inning, sending the Astros to their ninth victory in 11 games.
Arizona, which had won three straight, began the day with one-game lead in the NL West over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Astros retired Craig Biggio's No. 7 before the game, and the seven-time All-Star waved to fans and touched his heart during a lively ceremony.
Then, Oswalt went to work.
The right-hander, who is 5-0 in his last seven starts, walked two and matched a season high for strikeouts. He improved to 7-1 in his career against Arizona.
Oswalt (11-8) gave up a single to Stephen Drew in the third inning. But Chris Snyder, who had walked and been sacrificed to second, tried to score on the hit to shallow right and was thrown out at the plate by Hunter Pence to end the inning.
From there, Oswalt retired 15 straight batters before he was taken out of the game. Jose Valverde finished the two-hitter, allowing only Drew's single in the ninth before earning his 31st save in 37 tries.
Trying for his 295th win, Johnson (10-9) allowed eight hits and a walk in seven innings. He struck out five but lost for the first time in seven career starts against Houston. The Big Unit entered 4-0 with a 3.60 ERA against the Astros.
Johnson was 6-1 with a 1.77 ERA in his previous seven starts, but Wigginton's shot put him in an early hole.
Wigginton's 15th homer of the season stretched his career-long hitting streak to 14 games. During the streak, he has six homers, five doubles, a triple and 16 RBIs.
The D-backs are off Monday. They'll open a three-game series Tuesday night at home against the Padres.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)