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Florida at Atlanta

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Florida (65-85)0100003206101
Atlanta (77-73) «10405001x11140

Braves 11, Marlins 6

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- John Smoltz must have been taken aback. When he walked to the mound for the sixth inning, the Braves already has put 10 runs on the scoreboard.

Getting some rare run support, Smoltz pitched six strong innings and Atlanta overpowered the mistake-prone Florida Marlins 11-6 on Monday night.

Andruw Jones hit a three-run homer and Jeff Francoeur also drove in three runs to reach 100 RBI for the second year in a row, making things easy for Smoltz (14-7).

"Usually when he's gotten a win, it's been like 3-2," Francoeur said of his 40-year-old teammate. "To get some runs for him like that is nice."

The Braves scored just eight runs in Smoltz's seven losses, and they've been held to three runs or less in 14 of his 30 starts.

Give Smoltz a few more runs, manager Bobby Cox said, and he'd "have 21 or 22 wins by now."

For that reason, Smoltz called this the best year of his career -- even better than a 24-win season in 1996 that earned him the NL Cy Young Award. He reported for spring training shortly after going through a painful divorce, and he's had to pitch around spotty offensive support and a shaky bullpen.

"A lot of things happened on and off the field. A lot of things haven't gone right," Smoltz said. "But I don't remember a year where I've had this many starts where we at least had a chance to win."

Jones connected in the fifth for his 25th homer, a towering drive that capped a five-run inning and gave the Braves a 10-1 cushion.

Francoeur had a run-scoring single in the third and a two-run double in the fifth -- just before Jones' homer -- that gave the 23-year-old outfielder an even 100 RBI. He drove in 103 last year, his first full season in the big leagues.

"That's a goal that most players like to achieve," Francoeur said. "I've got to thank the guys hitting in front of me. Those guys get on base all the time. They're doing a lot of the work for me."

Chipper Jones raised his NL-leading average to .339 with three hits, and Edgar Renteria is still in the mix for the batting title at .333.

Smoltz was lifted after the sixth with the Braves comfortably ahead. He gave up four hits and his only run on Cody Ross' homer in the second, which briefly tied it at 1.

The Braves, still clinging to the faint hope of making the playoffs, remained 5½ games behind San Diego for the wild card and moved within 6½ games of NL East-leading New York. Atlanta has 12 games remaining.

"Until somebody says you're finished, you've got to go at it the best way you know how," Smoltz said. "We haven't been on a winning streak in a while. We've somehow got to do that."

Florida turned in a performance befitting a last-place team. Alfredo Amezaga misplayed two fly balls in center field, letting one bounce off his glove for a two-base error and totally losing another against the dark sky, giving Kelly Johnson a gift double.

"I lost it on the way down," Amezaga said, "and on the way up, too."

Byung-Hyun Kim (9-7) gave up a career-worst nine runs, allowing nine hits and hitting three batters in four-plus innings.

"It was a bad night," he said.

For good measure, the Marlins ran themselves out of another inning when Hanley Ramirez was struck in the leg by Jeremy Hermida's sharply hit grounder while on the basepaths, ending the third.

Plus, they had to contend with Smoltz.

"He was pitching us a little different. He was throwing off-speed stuff more," Mike Jacobs said. "Smoltz is Smoltz. He knows how to pitch. He's not going to give in."

The Braves also had a couple of runners tagged out. Andruw Jones got caught between third and home on a failed suicide squeeze, and Francoeur was thrown out at third trying to move up on Brandon Jones' sacrifice fly.

Jones, who was called up Sunday, still picked up his first career RBI.

In keeping with the Jones theme, the third of Atlanta's starters with that name, Chipper, had a pair of RBIs before he left the game.

Florida scored five runs off the Braves' bullpen. Jose Ascanio gave up three runs in the seventh, including a leadoff homer to Jacobs. Manny Acosta was touched for two more in the eighth.

Notes

Braves 1B Mark Teixeira had a painful night; he was hit twice with pitches by Kim. ... Forty-nine-year-old Julio Franco got a standing ovation when he came up as a pinch hitter in the eighth. He had the fans cheering again when he blooped an RBI single to right. ... Dan Uggla was hit in the back with a pitch from Braves reliever Rafael Soriano in the ninth, leading the umps to warn both teams. Uggla said the errant pitch was either payback for the three batters that Kim hit, or for the homer Uggla hit off Soriano in their last meeting. "It was definitely intentional," Uggla said. "I was lucky it didn't hit me in the head."

 
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
Atlanta

J. Francoeur
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
Atlanta

J. Smoltz
IP 6.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 1
K 4
 
Florida Marlins
Hanley Ramirez, SS5021001 .333
Dan Uggla, 2B4000022 .241
Jeremy Hermida, RF3110201 .287
Miguel Cabrera, 3B5000033 .320
Mike Jacobs, 1B4221000 .274
Cody Ross, LF4232000 .338
Miguel Olivo, C4011001 .238
Alfredo Amezaga, CF3111102 .265
Byung-Hyun Kim, P2000011 .034
    Daniel Barone, P0000000 .125
    Renyel Pinto, P0000000 .000
   a- Todd Linden, PH1000001 .228
    Matt Lindstrom, P0000000 .000
    Lee Gardner, P0000000 .000
   b- Alejandro De Aza, PH1000010 .218
Totals36610637  
a-flied out for Pinto in the 7th
b-struck out for Gardner in the 9th
Batting
2B - Cody Ross 2 (17, Ascanio, Moylan), Alfredo Amezaga (14, Ascanio)
HR - Mike Jacobs (17, Ascanio), Cody Ross (12, Smoltz)
RBI - Hanley Ramirez (74), Mike Jacobs (51), Cody Ross 2 (35), Miguel Olivo (59), Alfredo Amezaga (29)
2-OUT RBI - Hanley Ramirez (18), Cody Ross (14)
SB - Hanley Ramirez (50, 2nd base off Smoltz/McCann)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Cody Ross 1
DP - Olivo, Ross-Olivo-Cabrera, Uggla-H. Ramirez-Jacobs
E - Alfredo Amezaga (8, Dropped fly)
Florida Marlins
Byung-Hyun Kim (L,9-7) 4999130 6.06
Daniel Barone 1211021 5.01
Renyel Pinto 1000020 4.00
Matt Lindstrom 1000110 3.36
Lee Gardner 1311000 2.13
HBP - Johnson (by Byung-Hyun Kim), Teixeira (by Byung-Hyun Kim), Teixeira (by Byung-Hyun Kim)
WP - Byung-Hyun Kim (4)
Pitches-Strikes - Byung-Hyun Kim 85-48, Daniel Barone 15-11, Renyel Pinto 18-10, Matt Lindstrom 16-9, Lee Gardner 10-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Byung-Hyun Kim 1-7, Daniel Barone 1-0, Matt Lindstrom 1-1, Lee Gardner 1-1
Batters Faced - Byung-Hyun Kim 24, Daniel Barone 5, Renyel Pinto 3, Matt Lindstrom 4, Lee Gardner 5
Atlanta Braves
Kelly Johnson, 2B4320011 .284
Edgar Renteria, SS4110002 .333
    Yunel Escobar, SS1010000 .326
Chipper Jones, 3B4232000 .339
    Chris Woodward, 3B1000002 .189
Mark Teixeira, 1B2210010 .309
    Jose Ascanio, P0000000 .000
    Manny Acosta, P0000000 .000
    Peter Moylan, P0000000 .000
   a- Julio Franco, PH1011000 .222
    Rafael Soriano, P0000000 .000
Brian McCann, C1101102 .271
   b- Brayan Pena, PH-C2000011 .207
Jeff Francoeur, RF4123012 .295
Andruw Jones, CF3123100 .222
Brandon Jones, LF3001022 .000
John Smoltz, P3010021 .096
    Scott Thorman, 1B1000001 .218
Totals3411141128  
a-singled for Moylan in the 8th
b-struck out for McCann in the 6th
Batting
2B - Kelly Johnson (26, Kim), Chipper Jones (41, Kim), Jeff Francoeur (36, Kim)
HR - Andruw Jones (25, Barone)
SF - Brian McCann (6), Brandon Jones (1)
RBI - Chipper Jones 2 (93), Julio Franco (16), Brian McCann (89), Jeff Francoeur 3 (100), Andruw Jones 3 (91), Brandon Jones (1)
CS - Andruw Jones (2, Home by Kim/Olivo)
Team LOB - 6
Atlanta Braves
John Smoltz (W,14-7) 6411141 2.97
Jose Ascanio 0.2433001 5.40
Manny Acosta 0.2122110 2.60
Peter Moylan 0.2100000 1.81
Rafael Soriano 1000120 3.14
HBP - Uggla (by Rafael Soriano)
WP - Manny Acosta (1)
Pitches-Strikes - John Smoltz 76-57, Jose Ascanio 18-14, Manny Acosta 15-8, Peter Moylan 13-9, Rafael Soriano 20-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Smoltz 7-6, Jose Ascanio 1-1, Peter Moylan 2-0
Batters Faced - John Smoltz 22, Jose Ascanio 6, Manny Acosta 4, Peter Moylan 3, Rafael Soriano 5
Game Information
Attendance - 20957
Game Time - 2:51
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Ron Kulpa, First Base - Adam Dowdy, Second Base - Dan Iassogna, Third Base - Dale Scott