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Wakefield baffles Braves to tie Red Sox record

TIM Wakefield tied a franchise record for most games started and threw six shutout innings to lead the Boston Red Sox past the Atlanta Braves 1-0 on Saturday.

Wakefield allowed just three hits, striking out one and walking one, in his 382nd start for the Red Sox, which equalled Roger Clemens for most career starts in a Boston uniform.

"Just to be mentioned with the names that I'm mentioned with is pretty cool," Wakefield said. "It's a testament to not only longevity and perseverance, but also the organization for keeping me around and giving me a chance to still pitch in a Red Sox uniform."

The 42-year-old Wakefield (10-3) shows little sign of slowing down. He became the American League's third 10-game winner, allowing just three singles against the struggling Braves.

"It feels really good to have 10 wins before the All-Star break," Wakefield said.

"He continues to pitch his rear end off," said Boston manager Terry Francona. "He just keeps going out there and doing what he's supposed to do. It's fun to watch. I'm proud of him."

Mark Kotsay drove in the lone run of the game with a sixth inning single off loser Javier Vazquez (5-7), who allowed just one run on six hits over 7 2/3 innings with eight strikeouts.

"We've got to keep our heads up and keep battling," said Vazquez. "The guys are going to come out of this."

The Braves have now lost four straight games to slip to a season-worst six games under the .500 mark at 34-40.

Boston (46-28) has the best record in the AL and second best mark in the majors and have held the Braves to just one run in the first two games of this series.

In Los Angeles, Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki matched his career high with a seventh straight multi-hit game as the Mariners beat the majors-leading Los Angeles Dodgers 5-1.

In Toronto, J.A. Happ pitched a shutout as Philadelphia trounced Toronto 10-0.

In the first complete game of his career, Happ struck out four and didn't walk a batter, winning for the first time in four starts and helping the Phillies snap a three-game losing streak.

In other action, it was: Cardinals 5, Twins 3; Yankees 5, Mets 0; Rays 3, Marlins 2; Brewers 7, Giants 6; Astros 8, Tigers 1; White Sox 8, Cubs 7; Padres 7, Rangers 3; Angels 2, Diamondbacks 1; Rockies 11, Athletics 9; Pirates 6, Royals 2; Reds 7, Indians 3; and Orioles 6, Nationals 3.


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