J.C. Romero walked off a big league mound for the first time since Game 5 of the World Series, pumped his fist and gazed skyward.
Romero returned from his 50-game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance and pitched 1 1-3 innings in Philadelphia's 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres, the Phillies' sixth straight win.
The left-hander allowed an unearned run on two hits, a walk and a passed ball by Chris Conte.
"I was disappointed with my outing, but I'm glad it's over and done with," Romero said.
Romero, who earned two wins in Philadelphia's World Series victory over Tampa Bay last year, retired left-hander Brian Giles opening the ninth, then made way for Ryan Madson. Romero pumped his fist and gazed skyward as he walked to the dugout, where he received handshakes from his teammates.
He came on to open the eighth with a 5-0 lead. He allowed David Eckstein's RBI single with one out. After walking Adrian Gonzalez, the major league home run leader with 22, Romero got Kevin Kouzmanoff to line out to shortstop Jimmy Rollins, who doubled Eckstein off second to end the inning.
"I really wanted to put hitters away when I could, but at least I found a groove, when I came out in the second inning, I did what I'm supposed to do, which is getting good left-handed hitters out. But I know with my stuff I should be able to put right-handers away when they're behind in the count."
Ryan Howard hit a two-run homer to straightaway center field off Chris Young with two outs in the first, his 16th. It was Howard's second homer of the series and the sixth for the Phillies, who swept the three-game series with 20 runs on 33 hits _ 15 for extra bases.
J.A. Happ (4-0) held the Padres to four hits in seven scoreless innings, the longest of his eight career starts over two seasons. He struck out four and walked two.
"I just tried to be aggressive. I mixed it up early in the game a little bit more and kept the off-balance, I guess," Happ said.
"He likes to throw inside and was able to hit the inside corner with it," Eckstein said.
Young (4-4) allowed three runs and five hits in six innings. The Padres lost for the fifth time in six games.
Cubs 3, Braves 2, 11 innings
At Atlanta, pinch-hitter Micah Hoffpauir blooped an RBI single to left field in the 11th inning to lift the Cubs.
Derrek Lee started the 11th by drawing a walk from Jeff Bennett (2-3), then caught Matt Diaz off guard on a routine fly to left by tagging up and just beating the throw.
Lee stopped at third on a single by Reed Johnson but came home when Hoffpauir looped a single just over the head of third baseman Chipper Jones.
Kevin Gregg bounced back from a blown save one night earlier to set down Atlanta in order, earning his ninth save.
Angel Guzman (2-0) earned the win with two scoreless innings. Both starters _ Chicago's Ted Lilly and Atlanta's Derek Lowe _ pitched seven strong innings.
Dodgers 1, Diamondbacks 0
At Los Angeles, Chad Billingsley (7-3) scattered four hits and struck out nine over six innings and Casey Blake hit a sacrifice fly to supply all the offense.
Ramon Troncoso escaped a first-and-third jam in the eighth by getting Miguel Montero to ground into an inning-ending double play. Jonathan Broxton pitched a perfect ninth for his 13th save.
Jon Garland (4-5) yielded one run and four hits and struck out six in his Dodger Stadium debut.
Reds 9, Cardinals 3
At St. Louis, Johnny Cueto beat the Cardinals for the second time in less than a month and Laynce Nix homered twice with four RBIs.
Cardinals starter Kyle Lohse (4-4) was taken out with none out in the third inning complaining of tightness in his right forearm, an injury from getting hit by a pitch that had forced him to skip a turn in the rotation.
Cueto (5-3) allowed one run in 6 1-3 innings.
Brandon Phillips was 3 for 5 with his 10th homer in the ninth, an RBI single and two steals for the Reds.
Brewers 9, Marlins 6
At Miami, Ryan Braun homered and Milwaukee scored three runs on walks to snap its five-game road losing streak.
The Brewers scored six runs in the fifth inning, three on bases-loaded walks by reliever Hayden Penn, who came in for rookie Sean West (0-3) with runners on first and second.
Seth McClung (3-1) pitched 3 1-3 innings of relief, allowing only an eighth-inning homer by Dan Uggla. Trevor Hoffman pitched a perfect ninth for his 14th save in 14 chances.
Astros 6, Rockies 4
At Houston, Hunter Pence had a solo homer and two RBI singles and the Astros won their fourth straight.
Chris Sampson held the Rockies scoreless in the eighth and ninth to earn his third save in four chances. Tim Byrdak (1-1) pitched a perfect seventh inning to get the win.
Ian Stewart hit a three-run homer for the Rockies. Starter Jason Marquis (7-4) allowed 10 hits and four earned runs in six innings.