Webb's streak ends but D-backs end three-game skid

Hero: He may have ended 17 innings shy of Orel Hershiser's record, but Webb did give up only two runs in seven innings to win his 14th game of the year.

Unsung hero: Jose Valverde pitched a scoreless ninth for his league-leading 38th save.

Figure this: The D-backs snapped a three-game skid to remain 3½ games ahead of second-place San Diego in the NL West.

Quotable: "It was fun while it lasted. I just hope we start a new one." -- Webb

-- ESPN.com news services

Dodgers 2, Diamondbacks 0

PHOENIX (AP) -- Brandon Webb felt relieved when his shutout streak ended at 42 innings Wednesday night.

The Arizona ace allowed a run in the first but won his sixth consecutive start to lead the Diamondbacks past the Milwaukee Brewers 3-2.

"I was feeling it a little earlier in the day with all the attention," said Webb, the reigning NL Cy Young winner. "It was fun while it lasted. I just hope we start a new one."

Webb seemed more concerned about ending another streak -- Arizona's three-game skid. The Diamondbacks' victory salvaged the third game of the series between division leaders and kept them 3½ games ahead of second-place San Diego in the NL West.

Chris Young hit his 26th homer as the Diamondbacks improved to 28-16 in one-run games, the most victories in the majors.

Webb (14-8) gave up two runs and five hits in seven innings. He struck out five and walked one.

"He was cooked after seven," Arizona manager Bob Melvin said. "I think all things considered, it was a pretty impressive outing today."

Jose Valverde pitched a scoreless ninth for his major league-leading 38th save in 44 chances. The save came with some drama: Valverde gave up a one-out double to Bill Hall, who moved to third on Johnny Estrada's flyout. Valverde retired J.J. Hardy on a routine fly to end it.

Webb's shutout streak ended when Prince Fielder singled home a run in the first. The right-hander fell 17 innings shy of Orel Hershiser's major league record of 59 straight scoreless innings set in 1988.

It was the fifth-longest streak since 1940, behind Hershiser's 59 innings, Don Drysdale's 58, Bob Gibson's 47 and Sal Maglie's 45.

The streak began on July 20 at Chicago, when Webb pitched a scoreless seventh inning after giving up two runs in the sixth. He had made five starts since then, including three straight shutouts, the first Arizona pitcher to accomplish the feat. The last big league pitcher to throw three consecutive shutouts was Roger Clemens for Toronto in August 1998.

"It was a streak that was amazing to me," Webb said. "It was a long time since I had given up a run, obviously."

Gabe Gross led off the game with a single to center field, stole second and went to third on a groundout by Craig Counsell, Webb's former teammate in Arizona.

Melvin played the infield in to try to cut off the run, but Fielder lined a curveball to left field for a single to drive in Gross. It was Fielder's 97th RBI, tied for second in the NL.

"Everybody knew what was going on and the streak he had, and we didn't want to leave here with us just being another number in the streak," Gross said. "I guess I'm happy we broke the streak but we needed a win."

The crowd responded with a long standing ovation for Webb and gave him another as he walked off the mound at the end of the inning.

The superstitious Melvin had been avoiding Webb during the streak. But he greeted his pitcher as he returned to the dugout after giving up the run.

"It's the first time in a month I've talked to him," Melvin said. "I said, 'Way to go, now move past it, will you?"

It didn't take the Diamondbacks long to answer against Jeff Suppan (8-11). Young hit a 345-foot shot down the left-field line for his seventh leadoff homer this season. Orlando Hudson followed with a triple and scored on Tony Clark's sacrifice fly to give Webb a 2-1 lead.

After Fielder's RBI single in the first, Webb retired 14 of his next 15 batters. Gross led off the sixth with a double and scored on Counsell's double off first baseman Clark's glove to tie the score at 2.

With one out in the seventh, Stephen Drew singled, went to third on Chris Snyder's single and scored on Jeff Cirillo's groundout.

Suppan allowed three runs and seven hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out one. The 2006 NLCS MVP hasn't won since June 22, a span of 11 starts.

"He made a couple of mistakes in the first inning but then he really locked in and did a great job," Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said.

Game notes
Webb improved to 31-24 with a 3.17 ERA lifetime at Chase Field. ... Arizona is 35-35 all-time against Milwaukee and 18-18 in Phoenix. Milwaukee took the season series 5-2. ... Drew was charged with his 13th error when the shortstop booted a grounder in the second inning. That's the most on the club. ... Hudson grounded into his 21st double play in the third. That's tied for second in the league behind Washington's Ryan Zimmerman, who entered Wednesday with 24.