for this game

Braves rally past Athletics

May 17, 2008 - 4:00 AM By Phil Foley PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

ATLANTA (Ticker) -- There's no place like home for Mark Kotsay, Chipper Jones and the Atlanta Braves.

Kotsay beat his old club with an RBI double and Jones singled twice and scored the game-winning run to lead the Braves to a come-from-behind 3-2 win over the struggling Oakland Athletics on Friday.

Brian McCann had three hits and drove in a run for Atlanta, which improved to a major league-best 15-4 at Turner Field.

The Braves, who have dropped 16 of 22 on the road, have been a different team at home.

"We're not bad here," said Jones, who leads the majors with a .423 batting average. "We stink on the road, plain and simple. I don't know that the deal is. We don't get any hits, can't score any runs and can't make pitches."

Part of the reason for their success has been the play of Jones. The 36-year-old slugger has hits in 17 of Atlanta's 19 home contests and is batting .459 (34-for-74) at Turner Field.

Jones continued his torrid hitting at home, collecting a single in the sixth and leading off the decisive eighth with a single before advancing to second base on a two-out single by McCann.

Kotsay, who was traded from the A's to Atlanta in the offseason, followed by smashing the 0-1 offering from former Brave Alan Embree (1-2) into the right-center field gap, plating Jones to give Atlanta the victory.

"Obviously it feels good, but I don't have any regrets or bad feelings about that team," Kotsay said of his old club. "What transpired wasn't anything to do with hard feelings or anything. It just feels good to get a one-run win."

The 32-year-old Kotsay had just one hit in eight at-bats with a walk and two strikeouts against Embree before delivering the game-winning blow.

"I faced Embree a lot of times," Kotsay said. "He won more battles than I have. He threw it by me the first pitch. He came back hard I got my opportunity tonight. It feels good."

Manny Acosta (2-1) scattered one hit in two frames to record the victory.

Oakland jumped out to a 2-0 lead, but wasted a golden opportunity to break the game open in the second.

Catcher Kurt Suzuki snapped an 0-for-23 slump with a leadoff single and advanced to third on Ryan Sweeney's double.

However, Suzuki was nabbed at the plate after Sweeney mistakenly advanced to third base on the play as the catcher made a wide turn for home.

After Donnie Murphy drew a walk, Dana Eveland followed with a safety squeeze down the third base line. Atlanta starter Jair Jurrjens pounced on the ball and uncorked a wild throw over the head of McCann, allowing Sweeney to score and Murphy to advance to third.

After Murphy scored on a groundout, Bobby Crosby singled to right field. However, Eveland tried to test the arm of Jeff Francoeur and was gunned down at the plate when McCann applied a nice sprawling tag on the Oakland pitcher to record the final out of the frame.

"It was my first time at the plate and my first time on base," Eveland said. "I tried to score on a single and got thrown out by the best arm in the league."

"That was huge," Francoeur said. "(Being down) 2-0 is a big difference from 3-0. It was a soft hit ball. I had to get to it fast to make that play. It was a nice team win tonight."

Jurrjens, who allowed two unearned and scattered eight hits while pitching for the first time in his major league career on three days' rest, was thankful that Francoeur bailed him out.

"That's how crazy baseball is," said Jurrjens, who allowed two unearned runs in five frames. "I'm really thankful that I got out (of the inning) with two runs. I don't know how to explain it."

The lost opportunities were too much for the A's, who have been in a bit of an offensive slump over their past four games.

Oakland, which has dropped its last four contests and has lost six of its first seven on their nine-game road trip, has plated four runs over its last four games.

"I really didn't think about it," Eveland said of his club's offensive woes. "These guys are capable of putting 10 or 12 runs on the board."

The A's stranded 10 runners on base and finished a dismal 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.

Meanwhile, Atlanta took advantage of its opportunities, drawing the contest even in the sixth on two-out, run-scoring single by Francoeur and a double by McCann.

Eveland allowed two runs and six hits in 5 2/3 frames for the Athletics (23-20), who have dropped 10 of their last 16 games after starting the season 17-10.








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

    BATTERIES: OAK - DANA EVELAND, JOEY DEVINE (6TH), ALAN EMBREE (8TH) AND KURT
    SUZUKI
    ATL - JAIR JURRJENS, WILL OHMAN (6TH), JEFF BENNETT
    (7TH), MANNY ACOSTA (8TH) AND BRIAN MC

    May 16 10:38 PM
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    Athletics 2, Braves 3  Top 9, 0 OutsMay 16 10:31 PM


  • ML
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY MARK KOTSAY SCORED CHIPPER JONES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M KOTSAY ON SECOND, B MCCANN ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    ATLANTA 3 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: G BLANCO (.306, 0-FOR-2, BB)

    Athletics 2, Braves 3  Bot 8, 0 OutsMay 16 10:28 PM
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    Athletics 2, Braves 2  Top 7, 0 OutsMay 16 9:47 PM
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    Athletics 2, Braves 2  Top 7, 0 OutsMay 16 9:46 PM


  • ML
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BRIAN MCCANN SCORED JEFF FRANCOEUR.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, B MCCANN ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    ATLANTA 2 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M DIAZ (.268, 1-FOR-1, BB)

    Athletics 2, Braves 2  Bot 6, 0 OutsMay 16 9:41 PM
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    RUWTbot Took away 19 roots

    Athletics 2, Braves 2  Bot 6, 0 OutsMay 16 9:41 PM


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    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JEFF FRANCOEUR SCORED OMAR INFANTE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J FRANCOEUR ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    ATLANTA 1 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: B MCCANN (.310, 1-FOR-2)

    Athletics 2, Braves 1  Bot 6, 0 OutsMay 16 9:39 PM
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    Athletics 2, Braves 0  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 16 9:07 PM


  • ML
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY BOBBY CROSBY SCORED DONNIE MURPHY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, 1 LEFT ON, 3 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    ATLANTA 0 END TOP, 2ND

    Athletics 2, Braves 0  Top 2, 0 OutsMay 16 8:08 PM


  • ML
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY JAIR JURRJENS ALLOWED RYAN SWEENEY TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D EVELAND ON FIRST, D MURPHY ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1
    ATLANTA 0 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: J HANNAHAN (.253, 1-FOR-1)

    Athletics 1, Braves 0  Top 2, 0 OutsMay 16 8:04 PM
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    Athletics vs. BravesMay 16 10:10 AM