Maddux throws five-inning shutout

ATLANTA (AP) -- As usual, Greg Maddux gave the credit to his


Maddux became the first pitcher in major league history to win

at least 15 games in 16 consecutive seasons, leading the Atlanta

Braves over the Florida Marlins 8-0 Sunday.

Maddux (15-11) had shared the record of winning 15 or more games

in 15 straight seasons with Cy Young.

"Sometimes, you're pretty fortunate on the mound," Maddux

said. "It worked out. Probably the most special thing was seeing

the other 24 guys on the team really busting it for me. To see your

teammates go out of the way, that's pretty special."

He was referring to several outstanding defensive plays by

shortstop Rafael Furcal and a diving catch by center fielder Andruw


"I had a horseshoe," Maddux said.

Heading into the final week of the regular season, the Marlins

lead the NL wild-card race by one-half game over Philadelphia, a

4-3 loser to Cincinnati on Sunday.

The Marlins play the Braves on Monday then go home to open a

three-game series against the Phillies on Tuesday.

Maddux pitched five scoreless innings and allowed only one hit

in his 288th career victory. He tied Tommy John for 22nd place on

the all-time win list.

"We got it done in great fashion. Greg pitched great, the

offense did its job and the bullpen slammed it," Braves manager

Bobby Cox said. "It was a great way to accomplish such a great


Maddux was struck on the right ankle by a hard grounder off the

bat of Juan Pierre for the final out of the third inning. The

right-hander had the ankle taped in the bottom of the inning, then

went out and retired the Marlins in order in the fourth and fifth


The NL East champion Braves scored four times in the fifth for a

6-0 lead and Maddux left for a pinch-hitter.

Maddux had a bruise and X-rays were negative. He was expected to

make his next start.

"I'll be OK," Maddux said. "It was kind of hard to keep my

weight on it. It was a little uncomfortable."

He said he was glad he wasn't hit in the knee.

"With a foot you can go on," he said. "I don't know how much

it swelled up, but I know it hurt."

Maddux gave up just a leadoff single to Derrek Lee in the second

inning. He didn't strike out any or give up a walk and threw only

43 pitches, 29 strikes.

"He's a smart cookie. He knows how to pitch," Florida manager

Jack McKeon said. "He doesn't get you out, he makes you get

yourself out."

Chipper Jones drove in four runs for the Braves with a two-run

homer -- his 27th -- a sacrifice fly and RBI single.

The Marlins wound up with four hits, getting two off Darren

Holmes in the seventh. Lee had three hits.

The Braves took a 1-0 lead in the first on Jones' sacrifice fly

and made it 2-0 in the third on his run-scoring single.

Atlanta broke it open with the four-run fifth against Carl

Pavano (11-13). Javy Lopez hit a two-run double and Rafael Furcal

drew a bases-loaded walk.

Pavano went 4 1-3 innings. He allowed seven hits and six runs.

It was Maddux's third try at No. 15. In his last start Tuesday

night in Montreal, he left with a 4-1 lead after seven innings, but

he got a no-decision when the bullpen blew the lead and the Braves

lost 5-4 in 11 innings.

In his previous start against Philadelphia on Sept. 11, Maddux

gave up 12 hits and seven runs in 3 2-3 innings in an 8-3 loss.Game notes
Braves 3B Vinny Castilla left the game in the sixth inning

when a grounder by Alex Gonzalez struck the middle finger of his

right hand. Castilla threw out Gonzalez. X-rays were negative and

he was listed as day-to-day. ... Prior to Sunday, Maddux was 1-2

with an 11.25 ERA in 12 innings against the Marlins this season.