for this game

Smoltz, Renteria help Braves cruise past Indians

Jun 17, 2007 - 12:52 AM CLEVELAND (Ticker) -- John Smoltz's health is apparently not a concern.

Smoltz pitched six effective innings for his 201st career win as the Atlanta Braves posted a 6-2 interleague victory over the Cleveland Indians on Saturday.

Edgar Renteria had five hits, including a home run, and Willie Harris also had two RBI for Atlanta, which has won two straight following a three-game losing streak.

The win helps the Braves close to within 1 1/2 game of the National League East-leading New York Mets, who lost an interleague matchup against the crosstown Yankees.

Smoltz (8-3) allowed two runs and seven hits to win his third game in his last five starts. The 40-year-old struck out seven and needs just one more to tie Hall of Famer Jim Bunning (2,855) for 16th place on the all-time strikeout list.

"I had to grind a lot on every pitch, more than I usually do," Smoltz said. "I was real anxious. It was the first time in a long time that I had gone 11 days without pitching."

It was the righthander's first start since missing a turn in the rotation due to shoulder discomfort which occurred against Florida on June 5.

"You guys don't know anything, because you said he had a sore shoulder," Indians starter Paul Byrd said to members of the media. "But he was throwing 95 miles per hour, with 89 miles per hour sliders from (heck). I would love for my shoulder to feel bad and take that out to the mound. He shut us down. He had great stuff. That was the dominating John Smoltz we know."

Relievers Tyler Yates and Rafael Soriano each threw a scoreless frame before rookie Peter Moylan pitched a 1-2-3 ninth.

With the score tied at 2-2 to start the fifth, Kelly Johnson belted a pitch from Indians starter Paul Byrd which just eluded the reach of leaping center fielder Grady Sizemore to put a runner on third with no outs. Harris followed with a run-scoring single to give the Braves the lead.

After Harris stole second base and Renteria doubled into left-center field to give Atlanta a 4-2 lead, Chipper Jones hit a single to put runners on first and third. One out later, Brian McCann hit an RBI groundout to increase the lead by three.

"We had some good hits that inning," Braves manager Bobby Cox said. "Renteria and Harris drove in some big runs."

That was it for Byrd (6-3), who surrendered five runs and 10 hits to fall to 0-2 in the month of June. The 36-year-old righthander, who has a 9.60 ERA in three starts this month, has been tagged for 31 hits during that span.

"The last start I made some bad pitches, I didn't have it," Byrd said. "Today I thought I threw the ball well, but don't have anything to show for it. I couldn't get the ball to be hit at anybody."

Renteria homered with two outs in the ninth off reliever Rafael Perez to complete the scoring. It was his third career five-hit game, with the last being on August 8, 2004, against the New York Mets when he was a member of the St. Louis Cardinals.

"Last night, I felt like I never picked up a bat before," Renteria said. "Today, I felt good. I was seeing the ball good. Every swing today was perfect."

The Braves took the early lead in the third inning when Scott Thorman led off with a double and moved to third on a single by Yunel Escobar. Johnson followed with an RBI base hit give Atlanta a 1-0 lead. Harris followed with an RBI groundout to increase the lead.

However, Cleveland tied the score with two runs in the bottom of the frame, including an RBI single by Sizemore.

Casey Blake extended his hitting streak to a major league-high 25 games with a single in the third inning.

"Casey's putting up good at-bats," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "He's doing a good job of controlling what he can control. He's not worried about results and it's working out for him."








  • ML
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    ATLANTA 0 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 1 6 13 0
    CLEVELAND 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 7 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: ATL - JOHN SMOLTZ, TYLER YATES (7TH), RAFAEL SORIANO (8TH), PETER
    MOYLAN (9TH) AND BRIAN MCCANN
    CLE - PAUL BYRD, RAFAEL PEREZ (6TH) AND KELLY SHOPPACH

    HOME RUNS:

    Jun 16 6:45 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY EDGAR RENTERIA (10) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 9TH OFF RAFAEL PEREZ.
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 6, CLEVELAND 2
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: C JONES (.316, 2-FOR-4)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 6:35 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY BRIAN MCCANN SCORED EDGAR RENTERIA.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, C JONES ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 5
    CLEVELAND 2 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: J FRANCOEUR (.281, 0-FOR-2)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 5:33 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY EDGAR RENTERIA SCORED WILLIE HARRIS.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, E RENTERIA ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 4
    CLEVELAND 2 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: C JONES (.308, 0-FOR-2)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 5:26 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY WILLIE HARRIS SCORED KELLY JOHNSON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, W HARRIS ON FIRST, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 3
    CLEVELAND 2 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: E RENTERIA (.321, 2-FOR-2)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 5:24 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DAVID DELLUCCI HIT INTO DOUBLE PLAY SCORING KELLY SHOPPACH.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 2
    CLEVELAND 2 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: C BLAKE (.280, 0-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 5:00 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY GRADY SIZEMORE SCORED JOSH BARFIELD.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, G SIZEMORE ON FIRST, K SHOPPACH ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 2
    CLEVELAND 1 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: D DELLUCCI (.234, 0-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 4:58 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY WILLIE HARRIS SCORED YUNEL ESCOBAR.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, K JOHNSON ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 2
    CLEVELAND 0 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: E RENTERIA (.319, 1-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 4:42 PM


  • ML
    AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY KELLY JOHNSON SCORED SCOTT THORMAN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, K JOHNSON ON FIRST, Y ESCOBAR ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 1
    CLEVELAND 0 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: W HARRIS (.392, 0-FOR-1)

    Braves vs. IndiansJun 16 4:41 PM