So much for momentum, and for pitching matchups. Mike Hampton pitched eight shutout innings, and Charles Thomas, of all people, homered twice, and the Braves are back to two games out.
The game was scoreless until the fifth, when Thomas hit a Citizens’ Bank Special homer with one out. Furcal later in the inning hit his third homer of the series to make it 2-0. In the seventh, Thomas hit a two-run homer off of a lefty to finish the scoring on the day. He finished with three of the Braves’ seven hits… On the flip side, the seemingly coming-around Andruw was 0-4, all strikeouts. Yuck.
Hampton allowed five hits, all singles, walked two, and struck out five, getting his second win in a row. Smoltz finished it off in the non-save situation.
Russ Ortiz will start tomorrow, according to the Fox announcers, though ESPN still has Byrd listed. It makes a lot of sense, because if Ortiz doesn’t pitch tomorrow he’d wind up with eight days between starts. The game will be on TBS.