The right-hander allowed one hit over a career-high eight innings Wednesday night, helping the Reds end Houston's streak of 11 straight wins in Cincinnati with a 3-0 victory.
The impressive run finally ended against a pitcher coming off the wildest performance of his career. Volquez (3-2) walked seven in only five innings during a loss to Atlanta on Friday night, and came out determined to throw nothing but strikes.
He gave up nothing but Miguel Tejada's first-inning double off the wall, retiring 17 straight over one stretch. Volquez walked one, hit a batter and struck out six.
"I threw all my pitches where I wanted," Volquez said. "I wanted to go deep in the game."
He got the Astros to hit the ball on the rain-softened ground — 19 of the 27 batters he faced failed to get the ball out of the infield.
"They didn't hit many balls hard, but if they did, it was on the ground right at somebody," Reds manager Dusty Baker said.
Francisco Cordero completed the one-hitter with his seventh save in as many chances.
Houston hadn't lost at the ballpark since late in the 2007 season. The 11 straight wins were the longest such current streak in the majors and the longest in Astros history.
"We were a little bit flat," manager Cecil Cooper said. "We made some mistakes defensively that we normally don't make."
Laynce Nix tripled, scored a run and drove in another with an infield single off Felipe Paulino (1-3), who had trouble with the bottom of a lineup that's second-to-last in hitting in the NL. Rookie Adam Rosales had an RBI single and a sacrifice fly.
Houston has won 16 of its last 18 in Cincinnati and is 32-16-1 at Great American since it opened in 2003.
Nationals 4, Phillies 1
The Nationals got a rare flawless performance from a relief corps that has blown six saves and is a combined 0-7.
Cardinals 5, Braves 3
At Atlanta, Adam Wainwright overcame five walks and drove in a run during a four-run fifth inning for the Cardinals.
Wainwright (3-0) allowed seven hits and three runs with five walks in six innings. He gave up three runs in the first three innings, but the Braves couldn't hold a 3-1 lead.
Javier Vazquez (2-2) gave up nine hits and five runs in eight innings. He struck out eight — his fourth straight start with at least eight strikeouts.
Brewers 1, Pirates 0
At Milwaukee, Yovani Gallardo struck out a career-high 11 and homered in the seventh inning in the Brewers' 15th straight win over the Pirates. It is the longest winning streak by one team over another since Oakland beat Seattle 15 straight times in 2006.
Gallardo (3-1) didn't allow a runner until Andy LaRoche doubled with two outs in the fifth, giving up two hits and a walk in eight innings. Carlos Villanueva pitched the ninth for his second save in five chances.
Gallardo hit an 0-2 pitch from Ian Snell (1-3) for his second homer of the season.
Mets ace Johan Santana left after seven innings with a 3-2 lead.
Rockies 7, Padres 5
Cook (1-1) allowed three runs and five hits and struck out three in beating the Padres for the 12th time in 16 decisions. The win was his first since Aug. 29, 2008, at San Diego.
Tracy had three hits, including a two-run double and a solo homer. Upton drove in three runs with a double in a five-run seventh inning. The Cubs walked 10, eight in the last two innings, including three with the bases loaded.
Ryan Dempster (1-1) threw six innings, allowing five runs.
Giants 9, Dodgers 4
Molina had a homer, a two-run triple and an RBI single among San Francisco's 15 hits, while Edgar Renteria had four hits and drove in two runs as the Giants took two of three from the Dodgers.
Lincecum (2-1) retired the first 10 batters, cruising until Los Angeles' three-run rally in the eighth.
Eric Stults (2-1) gave up five runs and seven hits in 2-plus innings for the Dodgers.
Source: AP News