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Updated: Friday, April 25, 2003 11:21 PM EDT
Houston Astros
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Stats: Batting | Pitching
2 6 1
Montreal Expos
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Stats: Batting | Pitching
10 14 0
W Day (2-1)
L Robertson (1-3)
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MONTREAL (Ticker) -- The Houston Astros went north of the border, but their fortunes continued to head south.

Zach Day came within two outs of his first career shutout as the Montreal Expos handed the Astros their 10th loss in 13 games, 10-2.

Day (2-1) pitched a career-high 8 1/3 innings, allowed six hits and held Houston scoreless until Morgan Ensberg singled in Richard Hidalgo . Luis Ayala mopped up for Montreal.

"Zach was throwing the ball and there was not much you could do," said Astros left fielder Lance Berkman , who went 0-for-3.

Houston struggled from the outset as Montreal's Endy Chavez drew a leadoff walk in the bottom of the first from rookie starter Jeriome Robertson and Jose Vidro belted an RBI double.

"I walked the first hitter on four straight pitches, and that's terrible," Robertson said. "I'm still trying to be too fine because I want to get the ground ball instead of going after hitters."

Robertson walked Vladimir Guerrero and surrendered a two-run double to Orlando Cabrera . Fernando Tatis and Wil Cordero followed with singles before Robertson fanned Brad Wilkerson for the first out.

The Expos kept rolling as Cordero's two-run homer in the third inning made it 6-0.

"It's nice to see some big runs on the board early," Expos manager Frank Robinson said. "I expect a lot out of the players and I haven't seen anything yet this year that has surprised me."

Montreal has won five of its last seven games and improved to 3-1 at Olympic Stadium.

In three innings, Robertson (1-3) allowed six runs and six hits with two walks and three strikeouts. His ERA rose from 6.53 to 7.99.

Brandon Puffer was better in three innings of relief, yielding one run and three hits. Ricky Stone was reached for three runs in the seventh.

Expos catcher Michael Barrett drove in one of those runs with a single that ended an 0-for-25 drought.

"It's hard to believe that you could go that bad before you get a hit," Barrett said. "It's the first time in my entire career where I've had to deal with this kind of slump."

While Barrett has struggled with the bat, Day praised his ability to call a game behind the plate.

"I'm getting more comfortable with the catchers and with what I can do," Day said. "Each start, I go out there a little more comfortable."

Day's start was pushed up a day after Tony Armas Jr. was placed on the disabled list with a strained rotator cuff in his pitching shoulder.

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