ATLANTA -- When the Florida Marlins had two outs, they were hardly down.
In a game matching the top two teams in the NL East, the Marlins overcame an early 2-0 deficit with a five runs in the third and three more in the seventh - all scoring after the Braves retired the first two hitters of the inning.
"When you score with two outs, it makes it easy for you," Cabrera said.
The Marlins put together six consecutive hits off Mike Hampton in the third. Delgado had a two-run double, Cabrera an RBI single.
Florida made it 9-2 in the seventh. Again, the Braves started out with two outs, but it didn't matter. A single and a walk set up Cabrera's three-run homer off Roman Colon.
"That was huge," said Delgado, whose solo homer in the fifth accounted for one of the runs that didn't score with two outs.
Hampton (3-1) lost for only the second time in 16 decisions dating to July 4.
"That's why they have three outs in an inning," he said. "I was one pitch away from getting out of everything. But I was unable to get that pitch."
The Marlins added two more runs in the ninth. Delgado drove in his fourth run of the night with a double, and Florida pulled out to a one-game lead over the Braves in the division race.
"We wanted to show them who's the boss in our division, so to speak," Atlanta second baseman Marcus Giles said. "Obviously, we didn't do that tonight."
Al Leiter (1-2) finally won in his fifth start of the season. The left-hander struggled with his control, walking six during his five-inning stint, but he gave up only two hits and one earned run.
"Al's always been a guy who can get himself in a jam and find a way to get himself out," Giles said.
Hampton had not allowed more than three runs in his first five starts, and he started strong by retiring eight of the first nine Florida hitters. But it all unraveled with two outs in the third.
"I don't go up there thinking I'm going to left," Delgado said. "You take what they give you."
Actually, the Braves had a good chance to cut down Castillo at the plate, but Furcal's relay throw from short left sailed high and Delgado moved over to third.
Cabrera singled to right to put the Marlins up 3-2, then the Braves had another defensive lapse. Juan Encarnacion hit a slow roller to third baseman Wilson Betemit, who threw wildly to first. Encarnacion was given an infield hit, but the throwing error allowed Cabrera to come all the way around to score.
Paul Lo Duca finished off the big inning with a run-scoring single to center.
Hampton was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the sixth, having allowed eight hits and six runs (five earned). The loss snapped his seven-game winning streak and was his first home defeat since June 29, also against Florida.
Now, with Delgado in the middle of the lineup, the Marlins are even more dangerous.
"They're very talented," Hampton said. "You've got to grind for every out."
Betemit followed with a slow roller to shortstop, but Alex Gonzalez's throw to second sailed into center field instead, allowing Mondesi to trot home.
Leiter had a close call in the fifth with two runners on, Mondesi sent a drive to deep left, but Cabrera grabbed it against the wall. Leiter hopped off the mound, clearly relieved.
"I just try to throw strikes and keep the ball in the ballpark," he said.
|Miguel Cabrera knocks in three of his four RBI with one swing in the seventh inning. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
|Juan Pierre, CF||5||2||2||0||0||0||1||.287|
|Luis Castillo, 2B||3||2||2||0||1||0||0||.299|
|Damion Easley, 2B||1||1||1||1||0||0||0||.211|
|Carlos Delgado, 1B||4||3||3||4||1||1||1||.322|
|Miguel Cabrera, LF||5||2||2||4||0||1||2||.355|
|Todd Jones, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Juan Encarnacion, RF||5||1||1||0||0||0||1||.282|
|Paul Lo Duca, C||4||0||1||1||0||0||0||.347|
|Mike Lowell, 3B||4||0||0||0||0||0||1||.191|
|Alex Gonzalez, SS||4||0||1||0||0||1||0||.257|
|Al Leiter, P||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||.000|
|Nate Bump, P||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.000|
|John Riedling, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jim Crowell, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jim Mecir, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Lenny Harris, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.300|
|Chris Aguila, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.200|
|a-grounded out for Mecir in the 9th|
|2B - Damion Easley (4, Bernero), Carlos Delgado 2 (9, Hampton, Bernero), Alex Gonzalez (3, Hampton)|
|HR - Carlos Delgado (3, Hampton), Miguel Cabrera (5, Colon)|
|RBI - Damion Easley (3), Carlos Delgado 4 (15), Miguel Cabrera 4 (22), Paul Lo Duca (11)|
|2-OUT RBI - Carlos Delgado 2 (5), Miguel Cabrera 4 (9), Paul Lo Duca (6)|
|SB - Alex Gonzalez (1, 3rd base off Hampton/Perez)|
|CS - Paul Lo Duca (2, 2nd base by Hampton/Perez)|
|Team LOB - 3|
|DP - Lowell-Castillo-Delgado|
|E - Carlos Delgado (4, missed catch), Damion Easley (2, misplayed grounder), Alex Gonzalez (4, wild throw)|
|Al Leiter (W,1-2)||5||2||2||1||6||2||0||4.91|
|Jim Mecir (H,2)||0.2||0||0||0||0||2||0||3.24|
|WP - John Riedling (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Al Leiter 97-51, Nate Bump 24-17, John Riedling 12-6, Jim Crowell 5-4, Jim Mecir 9-7, Todd Jones 9-7|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Al Leiter 8-6, Nate Bump 3-2, John Riedling 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Al Leiter 24, Nate Bump 7, John Riedling 4, Jim Crowell 2, Jim Mecir 2, Todd Jones 3|
|Rafael Furcal, SS||5||0||1||2||0||0||1||.229|
|Marcus Giles, 2B||3||0||0||0||1||1||0||.292|
|Jorge Sosa, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Chipper Jones, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.364|
|Adam Bernero, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Brian Jordan, LF||4||0||0||0||1||1||1||.227|
|Julio Franco, 1B||3||1||0||0||2||0||1||.225|
|Andruw Jones, CF||4||1||1||0||1||2||4||.234|
|Raul Mondesi, RF||4||2||1||0||1||1||5||.205|
|Eddie Perez, C||4||0||1||1||0||1||2||.226|
|Wilson Betemit, 3B||3||1||0||0||1||0||0||.190|
|Mike Hampton, P||2||0||1||0||0||0||1||.375|
|b- Adam LaRoche, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.209|
|Roman Colon, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Pete Orr, 2B||1||1||1||1||0||0||0||.304|
|a-struck out for Sosa in the 8th|
|b-struck out for Hampton in the 6th|
|2B - Rafael Furcal (4, Crowell), Raul Mondesi (3, Riedling), Pete Orr (3, Crowell)|
|RBI - Rafael Furcal 2 (11), Eddie Perez (4), Pete Orr (3)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|E - Wilson Betemit (3, wild throw), Mike Hampton (2, wild throw)|
|Mike Hampton (L,3-1)||6||8||6||5||1||2||1||2.47|
|Pitches-Strikes - Mike Hampton 104-65, Roman Colon 23-13, Jorge Sosa 6-5, Adam Bernero 13-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Hampton 7-8, Jorge Sosa 1-1, Adam Bernero 1-2|
|Batters Faced - Mike Hampton 26, Roman Colon 6, Jorge Sosa 3, Adam Bernero 6|
|Attendance - 22299|
|Game Time - 2:44|
|Temperature - 64|
|Umpires - Home - C.B. Bucknor, First Base - Phil Cuzzi, Second Base - Ed Rapuano, Third Base - Jerry Crawford|