Sabathia pitches Brewers past Astros
Sabathia also hit a two-run single in a five-run fourth inning. He is 8-0 with a 1.60 ERA and five complete games in nine starts for the Brewers since they acquired him from Cleveland in a July 7 trade.
Last year's AL Cy Young Award winner has won 11 straight decisions overall.
Sabathia threw 130 pitches. The big lefty struck out nine, walked two and gave up 11 hits as the Brewers pulled 2 1/2 games ahead of idle St. Louis in the NL wild-card race. They also moved within five games of the first-place Chicago Cubs in the NL Central.
Houston, which had won nine of 11, dropped to 14-4 in August.
Corey Hart singled, doubled and homered for Milwaukee, and Ray Durham had three hits and three RBIs.
Randy Wolf (2-1) took the loss, giving up six earned runs and five hits in four innings, his shortest outing in five starts since joining the Astros on July 22. He walked three and struck out five.
The Brewers got a run in the first on Hart's two-out RBI double and put the game away with five more in the fourth, two on Sabathia's two-out single.
Milwaukee batted around in the fourth. Prince Fielder walked to lead off the inning, and Hart singled. Both advanced on a deep fly to center by Bill Hall but had to stay at second and third as Mike Cameron hit a short fly to right.
Wolf intentionally walked Jason Kendall, bringing up Sabathia, who came into the game hitting .246 in his career with nine RBIs, three this season. On the first pitch, Sabathia lined a single between shortstop and third base to score Fielder and Hart.
Durham then doubled home Kendall, as Sabathia narrowly avoided the tag at third with a feet-first slide.
Durham and Sabathia scored on J.J. Hardy's single.
That was all Sabathia needed. He gave up solo home runs to pinch-hitter Reggie Abercrombie in the fifth and Ty Wigginton in the sixth.
Wigginton's homer extended his career-best hitting streak to 15 games. He has seven home runs since the streak began Aug. 3.
Durham singled home Kendall in the sixth and doubled home Kendall in the eighth. Hart hit a solo homer in the seventh, his 19th.
Sabathia came in leading the NL in wins, ERA, complete games, shutouts and innings pitched since joining the Brewers but has often said he also enjoys hitting. He added a single in the sixth and a sacrifice bunt in the eighth to move to 6-for-28 (.214) with Milwaukee.
Sabathia has two home runs this season, including one in his second start for the Brewers on July 13.
Milwaukee slugger Ryan Braun left in the sixth after apparently re-injuring his back on a swing. Braun missed seven starts last week with tightness in his lower back. He pinch hit Saturday and returned to the starting lineup Sunday against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks was out of the lineup after leaving Sunday's game with a sprained left thumb. Weeks saw team doctor William Raasch on Monday, and he confirmed the diagnosis, the team said. Weeks is day-to-day.
Durham, who came in 8-for-43 since being acquired from San Francisco on July 20, started in Weeks' place.
Last updated: 9:59 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012