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Braves defeat Strasburg, Nationals

Stephen Strasburg said he "kind of battled myself" through the most difficult of his five big-league starts.

Host Atlanta scored four runs in the seventh inning against the Washington Nationals' star rookie to break open a scoreless game and Tim Hudson threw seven scoreless innings in the Braves' 5-0 victory last night.

Strasburg (2-2) said he abandoned his breaking ball too early in the game, leaving his fastball and changeup as his primary pitches. "I don't think I threw as many breaking balls as I have," he said. "You have to have that up here, because they square up on your fastball."

Strasburg's fastball reached 100 mph and he struck out seven, leaving him two shy of matching Herb Score's record of 50 in his first five starts. Strasburg has two losses and a no-decision after winning his first two starts. Said Braves manager Bobby Cox, "He's as advertised. He's dynamite. He's great. He's got maybe the best changeup for a first-year player I've ever seen."

Reds 7, Phillies 3

Scott Rolen hit his 300th career homer, a two-run shot, to back Johnny Cueto (8-2) for host Cincinnati.

Tigers 7, Twins 5

Brennan Boesch and Miguel Cabrera hit two-run doubles in the first inning as visiting Detroit moved into first place in the AL Central. Tigers reliever Joel Zumaya left the game in the eighth after falling to the ground in pain after throwing a pitch.

Pedroia out 6 weeks

Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia is expected to miss six weeks with a broken left foot, an injury suffered when he fouled a ball off the foot Friday. He was placed on the DL Saturday.

Zambrano restricted

Carlos Zambrano will be placed on the restricted list and the Cubs expect to be without the pitcher until at least the All-Star break. Zambrano has been suspended without pay for the past three games after his dugout tirade Friday. - AP

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