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Astros Sweep Slumping Cards
HOUSTON (AP) -- Hunter Pence hit a three-run homer and the Houston Astros completed a sweep of St. Louis with a 5-2 victory Wednesday, handing the slumping Cardinals their fifth straight defeat.

The fading Cardinals, who have lost 13 of 16, began the day seven games behind first-place Cincinnati in the NL Central.

Nelson Figueroa (4-2) pitched out of two bases-loaded jams and lasted five innings for the win. Brandon Lyon worked a perfect ninth for his 11 save in 12 chances.

Shut out 3-0 the previous two nights, St. Louis snapped an 18-inning scoreless streak on Matt Holliday's 24th homer in the first inning for a 2-0 lead.

Jeff Suppan (1-7) was activated from the disabled list before the game and allowed only one hit until the Astros rallied in the fifth.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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