"You can't leave that many men on base and win many games,''
Chipper Jones said, "but we were playing one of the better teams
The Braves left the bases loaded in the fifth, sixth and eighth
innings and stranded 14 runners after averaging 6.9 for the season.
"Our pitchers did a heck of a job holding them down to just two
runs'' in the first eight innings, Boston manager Grady Little
said. "Maybe (we) could have had a hit or two in the right place
and it could have been a different ballgame, but it didn't
So the Red Sox fell to 5-11 in interleague play and 1-5 in their
last six games. The Braves are 8-1 in their last nine and 13-3
against AL teams.
Atlanta won even though the 3-4-5 hitters -- Gary Sheffield,
Chipper Jones and Andruw Jones -- were 1-for-10 before Sheffield led
off the ninth with a double off Tim Wakefield (2-3). The next two
batters flied out, but Castilla singled in a run, Darren Bragg
walked for the third time and Blanco doubled home another.
"Timmy did a good job. Balls just fell in,'' Boston catcher
Jason Varitek said. "He threw a lot of balls that were moving
But the Braves got enough wood on them.
"A hit is a hit,'' Atlanta manager Bobby Cox said. "We didn't
hit the ball particularly hard when we got the runs.''
Atlanta's Greg Maddux and Boston's John Burkett both pitched
very well. Maddux, nursing a sore calf, left with a 2-1 lead after
five innings. Burkett, part of the Braves' starting rotation the
last two years, left with the score 2-2 after seven.
"We have matched up with some tough pitching,'' Burkett said of
his team's struggles. "I feel like if I make my pitches in the
situations that they scored it would have been a different game.''
Still, he was fortunate that the Braves stranded six runners in
scoring position against him.
"You had two Madduxes on the mound tonight, Burkett and the man
himself,'' Sheffield said. "They keep the ball down and make you
hit their pitch.''
The Red Sox tied it 2-2 with a run in the seventh. Varitek
singled, took second on a walk to Jose Offerman and scored on
Carlos Baerga's double. Nomar Garciaparra was walked intentionally
and Darren Holmes replaced Chris Hammond with the bases loaded.
Manny Ramirez, 2-for-10 since missing more than six weeks with a
broken finger, then lined the ball to the left-field warning track
where Chipper Jones made the catch.
The Red Sox scored the game's first run in the third without a
hit in the inning.
Offerman walked, stole second and took third on Johnny Damon's
groundout. Offerman scored when Garciaparra reached on a throwing
error by third baseman Castilla.
The Braves tied the game in the third when Bragg walked, took
third on Blanco's single and scored when Keith Lockhart grounded
into a double play.
Bragg led off the fifth with a single that hit Burkett and
deflected to second baseman Baerga, who threw into the dugout
allowing Bragg to take second. Bragg scored on Lockhart's RBI
Burkett left after 110 pitches, striking out four and allowing
eight hits and three walks.
Maddux retired the last seven batters he faced and was replaced
by Kevin Gryboski after throwing 74 pitches in five innings. In his
two previous starts, a strained left calf forced him out of the
game after six innings of a 4-2 win over Boston and a 3-2 win over
Detroit, both in Atlanta.
Atlanta 2B Lockhart had nine assists, including five in a
row on grounders in the third, fourth and fifth. ... The crowd of
33,137 was Boston's 25th sellout in 35 home games. ... Trot Nixon
is 3-for-19 against Maddux after going 0-for-2 Friday. ... Maddux
hasn't lost in his last 11 starts, going 5-0 since a 4-3 loss April
30 at Milwaukee. ... Burkett was 7-0 in his first nine starts but
0-3 in his last four.
New York Yankees put LHP Zack Britton on 60-day injured list
The Yankees have put reliever Zack Britton on the 60-day IL, ending the left-hander's attempt at an early return from Tommy John surgery after just three appearances.
Fantasy baseball pitcher rankings, lineup advice for Saturday's MLB games
Everything you need to know to place your MLB bets and set your fantasy baseball lineups for Saturday, October 1.
Stephen A. calls out Blue Jays' pitchers for walking Aaron Judge
Stephen A. Smith sounds off on MLB pitching after Aaron Judge's four walks against the Blue Jays.
Will the Guardians be a factor in the postseason?
Alden Gonzalez and Joon Lee break down how the Guardians were able clinch the AL Central and if they can make noise in the playoffs.
2022 MLB playoffs: Clinching scenarios, bracket and schedule
The race to reach October is on. Here's the latest on which teams will be playing in the postseason.
'I'm trying to catch Tom Brady': How Terrance Gore's unusual career got him three rings ... and counting
The Mets' designated speedster has zero career home runs and just a single RBI. But he's always needed in October.