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Holliday's homer in the 11th helps Rockies avoid sweep

Apr 30, 2007 - 12:35 AM DENVER (Ticker) -- Matt Holliday hit it where Jeff Francoeur could not catch it.

Holliday hit a two-run homer in the 11th inning as the Colorado Rockies avoided a sweep of the weekend series with a 9-7 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Sunday.

After Todd Helton drew his franchise-record fifth walk of the game with one out, Holliday connected on a 2-2 fastball from Steve Colyer (0-1) and drove it over the center field fence for his third homer of the season.

"You have to stay on the fastball with him, he throws hard," Holliday said. "In the back of your mind you know you might get his offspeed pitches but you have to sit fastball with a guy that throws that hard."

"I threw him a good pitch, it was down low and he just went and got it," Colyer said.

The clutch hit comes two days after Holliday was robbed of a possible game-winning hit in the ninth inning of the Braves' 9-7 victory by right fielder Francoeur.

While Francoeur was able to save that win for Atlanta, he could not help closer Bob Wickman, who coughed up a two-run lead in the ninth for his second blown save in three appearances.

Francoeur, who had two hits and scored twice, did help put the game into extra innings, making a diving, backhanded catch on a drive by Clint Barmes with the bases loaded for the final out in the ninth.

"We can't play much better that we did today, but those were great catches," Braves manager Bobby Cox said.

Wickman, who was pulled from the game in favor of Tyler Yates after he hit rookie Chris Iannetta to load the bases with two outs, finished with two runs, a hit and three walks allowed in two-thirds of a frame.

"It's pretty unusual to not be able to throw strikes, I think I'm pretty concerned," said Wickman, who finished with 14 balls on 24 pitches. "It's not a fact of being afraid or anything, I just can't get the ball to home plate right now."

The meltdown of Wickman spoiled a second sweep of the season for the Braves, who nearly overcame some slick fielding by Rockies rookie shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

Atlanta was threatening to break a 5-5 tie in the seventh when it put runners at first and second with no outs against reliever Zach McClellan. However, the Rockies got out of the jam as Tulowitzki recorded the 13th unassisted triple play in major league history on a lined shot by Chipper Jones.

With both Braves runners moving on contact, Tulowitzki caught the hard shot by Jones before tagging Edgar Renteria, who was coming from first, and stepped on second base before throwing to first for good measure.

"It's amazing, it kind of just fell in my lap but I'll take it," Tulowitzki said.

It was the first unassisted triple play in the majors in more than three years. The last player to get one, ironically, was Atlanta's Rafael Furcal, who accomplished it in August 2003.

"It's something I'll always remember, it took a second or two to register," Tulowitzki said. "As soon as I saw the runners take off, you think of a triple play but it rarely ever happens."

The Braves tried to take the lead again in the eighth, but Andruw Jones was thrown out at the plate on a relay between outfielder Willy Taveras and Tulowitzki trying to score on a double by Francoeur.

Atlanta did take the lead later in the frame when Francoeur scored after a ground ball off the bat of Brayan Pena slipped under the glove of third baseman Garrett Atkins, making it 6-5. It added another run to its ill-fated lead in the ninth on Renteria's RBI single.

Denny Bautista (1-0) pitched a scoreless 11th inning, working around a one-out walk.

Holliday finished with two hits and three RBI, including a infield single with a one out in the bottom of the ninth that cut the Rockies' deficit to 7-6. He hit the ball in the hole, and reached after shortstop Renteria could not field the ball properly.

Brad Hawpe tied the score on the next at-bat as his chopping ground ball to second baseman Kelly Johnson prevented a play at the plate, forced the Braves to settle for the sure out at first.

Hawpe also homered in the fifth, giving his team a 5-2 advantage with his first blast of the season.

However, Atlanta rallied back, in part due to Scott Thorman, who had a career-high four hits and four RBI.

Homering in the second inning against Colorado starter Aaron Cook, Thorman also had an RBI single in the fourth and delivered a two-run base hit in the sixth, slicing Atlanta's deficit to 5-4.

The Braves tied it two batters later on a sacrifice fly by Ryan Langerhans, who snapped an 0-for-29 slump in the third inning with a leadoff single.

After the game, Atlanta traded the struggling outfielder to the Oakland Athletics for either a player to be named or cash considerations.








  • NL
    FINAL 11
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
    - - - - - - - - -
    ATLANTA 0 1 0 1 0 3 0 1 1
    COLORADO 0 4 0 0 1 0 0 0 2
    10 11 R H E
    -- -- - - -
    ATLANTA 0 0 7 16 1
    COLORADO 0 2 9 8 1 (FINAL 11)

    BATTERIES: ATL

    Apr 29 6:46 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY MATT HOLLIDAY (3) TO CENTER WITH 1 OUT
    IN THE 11TH OFF STEVE COLYER SCORED TODD HELTON.
    FINAL SCORE: COLORADO 9, ATLANTA 7

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 6:46 PM
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  • NL
    AT COLORADO - MID INNING UPDATE
    PLAY: M Diaz hit for R Langerhans.
    SITUATION: 0 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    COLORADO 7 TOP, 10TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M Diaz (.264, 2 HR, 3 RBI)

    Apr 29 6:24 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - MID INNING UPDATE
    PLAY: B Fuentes relieved B Keppel.
    SITUATION: 0 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 0 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    COLORADO 7 TOP, 10TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: S Thorman (.277, 3-FOR-3, HR, 4 RBI)

    Apr 29 6:20 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - PITCHING CHANGE
    COL: BRIAN FUENTES (0-0, 4.09) STARTING THE 10TH
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7, COLORADO 7
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: S THORMAN (.277, 3-FOR-3, HR, 4 RBI)

    Apr 29 6:20 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    ATLANTA 0 1 0 1 0 3 0 1 1 7 15 1
    COLORADO 0 4 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 7 7 1 (TOP 10)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: ATL - TYLER YATES
    COL - BOB KEPPEL

    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: S THORMAN (.277, 3-FOR-3, BB, HR, 4 RBI)
    B PENA (.278, 2-FOR-4)
    R LANGERHANS (.068, 1-FOR-3, SF, R

    Apr 29 6:18 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY BRAD HAWPE SCORED TROY TULOWITZKI.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M HOLLIDAY ON SECOND, T HELTON ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    COLORADO 7 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: C IANNETTA (.158, 0-FOR-2, 2 BB)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 6:12 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MATT HOLLIDAY SCORED WILLY TAVERAS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M HOLLIDAY ON FIRST, T HELTON ON SECOND, T
    TULOWITZKI ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    COLORADO 6 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: B HAWPE (.260, 2-FOR-3, BB, HR, RBI)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 6:12 PM
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    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY EDGAR RENTERIA SCORED KELLY JOHNSON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, E RENTERIA ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    COLORADO 5 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: C JONES (.316, 1-FOR-4)

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  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY GARRETT ATKINS ALLOWED JEFF FRANCOEUR TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B PENA ON FIRST, S THORMAN ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 6
    COLORADO 5 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: R LANGERHANS (.070, 1-FOR-2, SF, RBI)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 5:28 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY RYAN LANGERHANS SCORED SCOTT THORMAN.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, B PENA ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 5
    COLORADO 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: O VILLARREAL (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 4:48 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SCOTT THORMAN SCORED CHIPPER JONES AND JEFF
    FRANCOEUR.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, S THORMAN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 4
    COLORADO 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: B PENA (.250, 1-FOR-2)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 4:46 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY BRAD HAWPE (1) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN THE
    5TH OFF OSCAR VILLARREAL.
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 2, COLORADO 5
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: C IANNETTA (.167, 0-FOR-0, 2 BB)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 4:37 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SCOTT THORMAN SCORED ANDRUW JONES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S THORMAN ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 2
    COLORADO 4 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: B PENA (.200, 0-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 4:16 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY TROY TULOWITZKI SCORED JAMEY CARROLL AND WILLY
    TAVERAS.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, T TULOWITZKI ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 1
    COLORADO 4 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: G ATKINS (.276, 1-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 3:46 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY WILLY TAVERAS SCORED BRAD HAWPE AND CHRIS
    IANNETTA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, W TAVERAS ON FIRST, J CARROLL ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 1
    COLORADO 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: T TULOWITZKI (.200, 0-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 3:45 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY SCOTT THORMAN (3) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 2ND OFF AARON COOK.
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 1, COLORADO 0
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: B PENA (.214, 1 HR, 1 RBI)

    Braves vs. RockiesApr 29 3:28 PM