Atlanta at San Diego

Scoreboard
Atlanta000010010260
San Diego «000000012371

Padres 3, Braves 2

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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SAN DIEGO -- Once John Smoltz was out of the game, it was time for another comeback by the San Diego Padres.

Khalil Greene singled in the winning run with one out in the ninth inning and the Padres rallied for the third straight game, beating the Atlanta Braves 3-2 on Tuesday night for their sixth straight victory.

The Padres won for the 15th time in 18 games and took sole possession of first place in the NL West.

"It's a great sign that they keep fighting, and that's what it takes," manager Bruce Bochy said. "Every game they go hard for nine innings and battle their tails off. It's been great baseball. I've enjoyed it."

It might have been a costly win, though. All-Star second baseman Mark Loretta sprained his left thumb diving into first base while beating out an infield single in the third inning. He will be re-evaluated on Wednesday.

Loretta ruptured a ligament in the same thumb during spring training in 2001, requiring surgery that kept him out for the first 1½ months of the season.

"He's a guy we'll miss if he's out for a long time," Bochy said.

The Padres' comeback spoiled a strong effort by Smoltz, who allowed just one run on four hits in eight innings for the Braves.

Smoltz said he expended too much energy in the eighth, when he allowed Greene's RBI double.

"I thought I was good to go nine," Smoltz said. "But the eighth got to be too much. You can't push the envelope too much."

The Padres knew they had a good opportunity.

"I'd lying if I said 'No,'" Nevin said. "A guy like John Smoltz, he's a Hall of Famer for one, and he had his stuff tonight. He was on."

Dan Kolb (1-4) blew a save for the third time in 13 chances by allowing three hits and two walks in the ninth.

With the Padres trailing 2-1, Ryan Klesko walked leading off the ninth and took third on Giles' single to right field. Klesko scored the tying run on Nevin's chopper to shortstop for the first out.

"I knew I just had to try to get a ball in play, and fortunately I just found the front edge of home plate," Nevin said.

Ramon Hernandez singled to left to move Giles to third, and Sean Burroughs was intentionally walked to load the bases. Greene followed with a single on an 0-2 pitch to bring in Giles with the winning run.

"When good things happen, you just try to ride it out as long as you can," Nevin said. "Last year it seemed like we didn't get many breaks. Right now balls are falling. Sure, there's some reason to be excited, but we want to keep it on an even keel and play our brand of baseball and win games at home."

Dennys Reyes (2-0) got the final out of the ninth for the win.

The Padres scored three runs in the eighth inning Monday night to beat the Braves 5-3, and scored 10 in the seventh Sunday to beat the Florida Marlins 12-4.

"This is a hot ballclub and they are finding ways to win," Smoltz said of the Padres.

The Braves have led in the eighth or ninth inning in each of their last four losses.

Smoltz allowed just one run on four hits, struck out five and walked two. He retired 14 of his last 16 batters.

Smoltz held the Padres scoreless until the eighth. Greene reached on a leadoff double to left, advanced on pinch-hitter Mark Sweeney's groundout to first and scored on Dave Roberts' sacrifice fly to center.

In the top of the eighth, Andruw Jones gave Smoltz some breathing room with a two-out solo homer off Akinori Otsuka, his 10th, for a 2-0 lead.

Darrell May held the Braves in check until the fifth inning, when Rafael Furcal hit a sacrifice fly. Raul Mondesi drew a leadoff walk and advanced on Wilson Betemit's single and Smoltz's sacrifice before scoring on Furcal's fly to center.

May lasted five innings in his second start of the season, allowing one run and three hits. He struck out three and walked two.

Notes

Loretta stayed in the game after hurting his thumb but came out after the fourth inning. ... Betemit started in place of Braves 3B Chipper Jones, who was scratched from the lineup because of a strained muscle in his left side. Jones is listed as day-to-day. ... The Padres have the best home record in the major leagues, 15-4. ... San Diego is 12-3 in one-run games, and has won 10 straight.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
San Diego

K. Greene
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Atlanta

J. Smoltz
IP 8.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 2
K 5
 

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Atlanta Braves
Rafael Furcal, SS3011010 .228
Marcus Giles, 2B4010012 .283
Brian Jordan, LF3000113 .230
Andruw Jones, CF4111002 .293
Julio Franco, 1B3000121 .254
Johnny Estrada, C3010101 .246
Raul Mondesi, RF3100113 .194
Wilson Betemit, 3B4020011 .259
John Smoltz, P2000021 .125
   a- Adam LaRoche, PH1000001 .280
    Danny Kolb, P0000000 .000
Totals302624915 
a-popped out for Smoltz in the 9th
Batting
2B - Johnny Estrada (11, Falkenborg)
HR - Andruw Jones (10, Otsuka)
SF - Rafael Furcal (2)
SH - John Smoltz (3)
RBI - Rafael Furcal (15), Andruw Jones (26)
2-OUT RBI - Andruw Jones (15)
SB - Rafael Furcal (10, 2nd base off May/Hernandez), Brian Jordan (2, 2nd base off Seanez/Hernandez)
CS - Wilson Betemit (1, 2nd base by Seanez/Hernandez)
Team LOB - 7
Atlanta Braves
John Smoltz 8411250 2.83
Danny Kolb (BS,3; L,1-4) 0.1322200 6.48
IBB - Burroughs by Danny Kolb
Pitches-Strikes - John Smoltz 108-64, Danny Kolb 29-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Smoltz 9-9, Danny Kolb 1-0
Batters Faced - John Smoltz 29, Danny Kolb 6
San Diego Padres
Dave Roberts, CF3001010 .255
Mark Loretta, 2B2020000 .300
    Damian Jackson, 2B2000000 .219
Ryan Klesko, LF2100201 .277
Brian Giles, RF3120112 .277
Phil Nevin, 1B4001023 .253
Ramon Hernandez, C4010000 .299
Sean Burroughs, 3B3000101 .287
Khalil Greene, SS4121010 .233
Darrell May, P1000000 .000
   a- Robert Fick, PH1000000 .400
    Rudy Seanez, P0000000 .000
    Akinori Otsuka, P0000000 .000
   b- Mark Sweeney, PH1000001 .371
    Brian Falkenborg, P0000000 .000
    Dennys Reyes, P0000000 .000
Totals30373458 
a-grounded out for May in the 5th
b-grounded out for Otsuka in the 8th
Batting
2B - Khalil Greene (5, Smoltz)
SF - Dave Roberts (1)
RBI - Dave Roberts (11), Phil Nevin (27), Khalil Greene (8)
CS - Brian Giles (1, 2nd base by Smoltz/Estrada)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Burroughs-Loretta-Nevin
E - Khalil Greene (4, Misplayed grounder)
San Diego Padres
Darrell May 5311230 4.43
Rudy Seanez 2100240 1.37
Akinori Otsuka 1111021 2.33
Brian Falkenborg 0.2100000 7.71
Dennys Reyes (W,2-0) 0.1000000 2.49
IBB - Estrada by Rudy Seanez
Pitches-Strikes - Darrell May 60-36, Rudy Seanez 20-11, Akinori Otsuka 16-11, Brian Falkenborg 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Darrell May 3-9, Akinori Otsuka 1-0, Brian Falkenborg 1-1
Batters Faced - Darrell May 20, Rudy Seanez 8, Akinori Otsuka 4, Brian Falkenborg 3, Dennys Reyes 1
Game Information
Attendance - 31330
Game Time - 2:44
Temperature - 67
Umpires - Home - Larry Young, First Base - Eric Cooper, Second Base - Field Culbreth, Third Base - Marvin Hudson