Battered and bruised, the Houston Astros are alone atop the NL wild-card standings -- for now.
Pettitte pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings, and Berkman hit a three-run homer to lead Houston past the Philadelphia Phillies 4-3 on Monday night.
The Astros moved a half-game ahead of Philadelphia and one game ahead of Florida with their 10th consecutive win over the Phillies. Washington is 1½ games behind Houston, while the New York Mets trail by three games.
"It was a good win for us," said Pettitte, who left in the sixth because his left foot had swelled to the point where he was having trouble pushing off the mound.
Brett Myers' grounder up the middle in the third hit Pettitte's foot, but the left-hander stayed in a few more innings. Pettitte isn't expected to miss his next start.
Ensberg left the game with a bruised right hand after striking out in the fifth. He was hit by a pitch in the third inning, but X-rays on the hand were negative and he's day to day.
Pettitte (14-9) allowed three hits, struck out five and walked none. Dan Wheeler escaped a jam with the bases loaded in the seventh, and Brad Lidge pitched the ninth for his 33rd save, although he made things interesting before getting the final out.
Kenny Lofton, who led off the ninth with an infield single, scored on a wild pitch to make it 4-3 with two outs. Lidge then walked Ryan Howard, and Jimmy Rollins doubled into the right-field corner to put runners on second and third. Lidge struck out pinch-hitter Endy Chavez to end the game.
"We had a chance at the end, but couldn't get it done," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.
Berkman's drive in the first off Myers (12-7) gave Pettitte all the runs he needed. Pettitte lowered his ERA to 2.42 and has allowed three earned runs or less in 15 straight starts. He has given up one run or less in 11 of those outings.
"He's pitched very, very good for us," Astros manager Phil Garner said. "I'm surprised his control has been better than most guys in their first year after surgery."
The Phillies cut it to 4-1 on an RBI single by Mike Lieberthal off Qualls in the seventh. Tomas Perez then singled to load the bases and chase Qualls with one out. Mike Gallo entered and struck out pinch-hitter Howard. But Gallo walked Rollins to force in the second run.
Wheeler relieved and retired pinch-hitter Michael Tucker on a hard grounder to second to leave the bases full.
Berkman followed with a liner deep into the right-field seats, giving the Astros a 4-0 lead. It was Berkman's 17th homer and the third straight game he's connected.
"We know it's an important series and they know it's important," Berkman said. "A lot of times you can get to a guy before he settles in and gets his good control. A lot of times that's how you beat a good pitcher, get to him early."
Myers allowed four runs -- three earned -- and five hits in seven innings. He struck out six and retired the last 10 batters he faced.
"I was trying to keep us in the game so we can rally," Myers said. "We showed a lot of heart coming back."
|Lance Berkman's three-run homer in the first inning puts the host Phillies in an early hole. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Willy Taveras, CF||5||1||1||0||0||2||3||.289|
|Craig Biggio, 2B||3||1||0||0||1||1||3||.267|
|Morgan Ensberg, 3B||2||1||1||1||0||1||0||.278|
|Eric Bruntlett, 3B||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.190|
|Lance Berkman, 1B||4||1||1||3||0||1||0||.294|
|Jason Lane, RF||4||0||0||0||0||2||1||.259|
|Luke Scott, LF||4||0||0||0||0||1||1||.182|
|Adam Everett, SS||4||0||1||0||0||0||0||.249|
|Brad Ausmus, C||3||0||1||0||1||0||0||.260|
|Andy Pettitte, P||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||.100|
|Chad Qualls, P||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.000|
|Mike Gallo, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Dan Wheeler, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Jose Vizcaino, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||2||.257|
|Brad Lidge, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a-struck out for Wheeler in the 9th|
|HR - Lance Berkman (17, Myers)|
|SH - Andy Pettitte (13)|
|RBI - Morgan Ensberg (96), Lance Berkman 3 (61)|
|SB - Willy Taveras (32, 2nd base off Myers/Lieberthal), Adam Everett (19, 2nd base off Wagner/Lieberthal)|
|Team LOB - 6|
|E - Adam Everett (10, Wild throw)|
|Andy Pettitte (W,14-9)||5.2||3||0||0||0||5||0||2.42|
|Mike Gallo (H,6)||0.1||0||0||0||1||1||0||2.81|
|Dan Wheeler (H,15)||1.1||0||0||0||0||0||0||1.72|
|Brad Lidge (S,33)||1||2||1||1||1||1||0||2.37|
|WP - Brad Lidge (7)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Andy Pettitte 86-59, Chad Qualls 17-14, Mike Gallo 14-8, Dan Wheeler 18-13, Brad Lidge 29-18|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Andy Pettitte 6-6, Chad Qualls 1-1, Dan Wheeler 1-3, Brad Lidge 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Andy Pettitte 20, Chad Qualls 6, Mike Gallo 2, Dan Wheeler 4, Brad Lidge 6|
|Jimmy Rollins, SS||4||0||1||1||1||1||1||.261|
|Jason Michaels, CF||3||0||2||0||0||1||0||.315|
|a- Michael Tucker, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||3||.239|
|Ryan Madson, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Billy Wagner, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.500|
|b- Endy Chavez, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||2||.214|
|Bobby Abreu, RF||4||0||0||0||0||1||2||.292|
|Pat Burrell, LF||4||0||0||0||0||1||1||.280|
|Chase Utley, 2B||4||1||1||0||0||1||1||.287|
|David Bell, 3B||4||1||1||0||0||0||0||.246|
|Mike Lieberthal, C||3||0||1||1||0||0||0||.254|
|c- Kenny Lofton, PH||1||1||1||0||0||0||0||.311|
|Tomas Perez, 1B||3||0||1||0||0||0||0||.250|
|Shane Victorino, PR-CF||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.000|
|Brett Myers, P||2||0||1||0||0||0||0||.130|
|d- Ryan Howard, PH-1B||1||0||0||0||1||1||3||.283|
|Matt Kata, PR||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.200|
|a-grounded out for Michaels in the 7th|
|b-struck out for Wagner in the 9th|
|c-singled for Lieberthal in the 9th|
|d-struck out for Myers in the 7th|
|2B - Jimmy Rollins (23, Lidge), Jason Michaels (16, Pettitte)|
|RBI - Jimmy Rollins (37), Mike Lieberthal (39)|
|2-OUT RBI - Jimmy Rollins (18)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|E - David Bell (18, Misplayed grounder)|
|Brett Myers (L,12-7)||7||5||4||3||1||6||1||3.53|
|HBP - Ensberg (by Brett Myers)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Brett Myers 100-69, Ryan Madson 12-8, Billy Wagner 22-14|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brett Myers 8-8, Ryan Madson 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Brett Myers 29, Ryan Madson 3, Billy Wagner 5|
|Attendance - 36144|
|Game Time - 2:58|
|Temperature - 81|
|Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Gary Darling, Second Base - Larry Poncino, Third Base - Paul Nauert|