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ORIOLES KEEP PACE WITH BLUE JAYS; BRAVES WIN

After his pitchers hurled 34 consecutive shutout innings, Baltimore manager Johnny Oates could be forgiven for getting a little greedy.

"It could have been better," Oates said after Bob Milacki scattered four hits over eight-plus innings in his first game since being recalled from the minors, helping the Orioles to a 5-1 victory over Oakland. "It could have been a shutout."The victory allowed the Orioles to keep pace in the AL East with Toronto, which they trail by 11/2 games. The Athletics saw their lead over Minnesota in the AL West slip to 51/2 games.

Milacki, 6-7, left after walking the leadoff hitter in the ninth. He was charged with one run and struck out three.

"My slider helped me out a lot," Milacki said. "I had the control on my fastball, but being able to throw something other than a fastball when I was behind in the count really helped me out."

Mike Devereaux had four hits and two RBI in the Orioles' fourth straight victory.

Oakland starter Joe Slusarski, 5-5, also just recalled from the minors, worked five innings, giving up four hits and two runs. He walked two and struck out five.

Oakland's run in the ninth ended the Orioles shutout streak at 37 innings, their longest since a 54-inning stretch in September 1974 that set an American League record.

Blue Jays 9, White Sox 3

At Toronto, Jack Morris held Chicago to four hits over eight innings for his club record-tying 18th win and Kelly Gruber hit a grand slam, helping the Blue Jays to their third straight victory. Morris, 18-5, allowed just one hit until the eighth, when he gave up a double to Dan Pasqua, a single to Vance Johnson and a three-run homer to Ron Karkovice, who had Chicago's only other hit. Morris struck out three and didn't walk a batter.

Twins 5, Tigers 4

At Detroit, Darren Reed's eighth-inning sacrifice fly in his first American League plate appearance broke a tie and lifted the Twins to their third straight victory.

Yankees 7, Brewers 1

At Milwaukee, Melido Perez scattered eight hits over eight innings to win his third straight start and Danny Tartabull and Pat Kelly both had three hits in New York's 16-hit barrage.

Royals 8, Rangers 3

At Kansas City, Mo., Gregg Jefferies drove in three runs and George Brett drove in two, powering the Royals.

Angels 7, Indians 6

At Anaheim, Calif., Gary Gaetti went 4-for-5 with two homers homers to drive in three runs, powering the Angels' comeback victory.

Mariners 4, Red Sox 3

At Seattle, Tino Martinez hit a solo home run in the eighth to lead the Mariners. Martinez hit a Greg Harris pitch 357 feet over the right-field fence to snap a 3-3 tie with his 13th homer of the season.

National League

Braves 4, Mets 1

At New York, David Justice hit a two-run homer in the first and rookie David Nied allowed just four hits over seven innings in his major-league debut to guide the Atlanta Braves to a triumph over the New York Mets. Nied, 1-0, surrendered just one earned run, struck out three and walked four, including two in the first inning.

Pirates 5, Giants 3

At Pittsburgh, Jay Bell ripped a two-run single to cap a three-run fifth inning that erased a 3-1 Pirate deficit. The Pirates have won three straight and five of their last six. Barry Bonds added a home run for Pittsburgh, which handed the Giants their seventh consecutive loss.

Expos 5, Reds 2

At Cincinnati, Dennis Martinez won his fifth straight game, John Wetteland notched his 30th save and Marquis Grissom opened the contest with a home run. The Expos have won four straight to remain three games in back of first-place Pittsburgh in the NL East. The Reds lost their sixth in a row.

Cardinals 2, Padres 0

At St. Louis, Donovan Osborne pitched seven shutout innings, while Geronimo Pena and Tom Pagnozzi hit solo home runs. Lee Smith a perfect ninth to complete the combined six-hit shutout and record his NL-leading 37th save. The win marked the Cardinals' fifth straight and moved them to the .500 mark for the first time since July 18. San Diego has dropped four straight.

Dodgers 5, Cubs 4

At Chicago, Heathcliff Slocumb walked Mike Sharperson with the bases loaded in the 13th inning, forcing in pitcher Roger McDowell with the go-ahead run. Lenny Harris drove in three runs and Eric Karros hit a solo homer for Los Angeles. Ryne Sandberg had two homers for Chicago. The loss snapped the Dodgers' six-game losing skid and the Cubs' four-game winning streak.

Astros 5, Phillies 3

At Houston, Ken Caminiti and Luis Gonzalez each hit a home run and drove in two runs. Caminiti's shot in the third was an inside-the-park homer. Houston has won nine of its last 11 games.