Back on track in San Diego, with the Braves scoring four runs on three homers and getting good pitching from Mike Hampton. Chipper and Andruw hit solo homers (Andruw in the second, Chipper his 300th career in the third) and the Braves led 3-0 early. Drew hit a two-run homer to make it 5-1 in the seventh, and it turned out that the Braves needed the insurance. Smoltz pulled a Gryboski, allowing two inherited runners to score in the eighth before stranding his own guys, but held on for his 140th career save, leaving him one behind Garber.
Hampton went seven-plus, allowing three earned runs and mostly getting ground balls. This time the infield didn’t collapse around him and getting ground balls was a good thing. Reitsma pitched 2/3 of the eighth before Smoltz came in.
The Braves had seven hits and four walks, but weren’t able to put together a string of hits for a rally. That annoys me, but the homers did the job tonight. The one run not scored on a homer was driven in on a double by Hampton.
The Marlins are winning — no, they’ve won — to stay eight games back. The Phillies are idle… Wright against Jake Peavy, who is 8-3 with a 2.14 ERA, tomorrow. It will probably be a 9-8 game, then.