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Milwaukee at Atlanta

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Milwaukee (79-75)00000200010361
Atlanta (81-74) «10100000011450

Brewers bobble away game to Braves, lose ground in Central

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- Francisco Cordero rarely gives up homers -- especially with his Brewers one out from a win. Rickie Weeks rarely bobbles easy grounders.

The extra-inning slips set up Mark Teixeira's winning single in the 11th Saturday, giving the Atlanta Braves a 4-3 victory and leaving Milwaukee facing a 2½-game deficit in the NL Central.

The division-leading Chicago Cubs beat Pittsburgh 9-5 earlier in the day.

"We're down 2½ with eight left. That's not good math," said Milwaukee's Corey Hart, whose 10th-inning homer gave Milwaukee a 3-2 lead.

Brewers manager Ned Yost refused to take a dim view of his team's chances.

"We're 2½ good days from being back in first place, and as far as I know we have a week left, so no, just play it day by day," Yost said.

Needing to win, the Brewers were one out away in the 10th when Cordero gave up a tying home run to pinch-hitter Scott Thorman.

Edgar Renteria drew a leadoff walk from Seth McClung (0-1) in the Braves 11th and Willie Harris pinch-ran. Brian Shouse relieved, and Chipper Jones hit an easy grounder that Weeks misplayed.

"I just missed the ball," Weeks said. "I was trying to get the ball to the shortstop for two."

Teixeira, watching from the on-deck circle, said he knew that Weeks' 13th error gave the Braves an opening.

"I knew it was over," Teixeira said. "Whether I was going to do it or I was going to get the runner over and let Mac (Brian McCann) or Frenchy (Jeff Francoeur) do it, I knew we were going to win that game."

Teixeira singled past first baseman Prince Fielder to win it.

Of the Brewers' remaining eight games, the final seven are in Milwaukee.

"The Cubs could win every game from here on out, or they could lose every game from here on out," Weeks said. "All we can do is go out and try to win games."

Joey Devine (1-0) recorded two outs in the 11th.

The Brewers broke the 1982 team record with their 217th homer, a two-run shot by J.J. Hardy in the sixth -- that was Milwaukee's first hit against John Smoltz.

Then in the 10th, Hart led off with a home run against rookie Peter Moylan to give Milwaukee a 3-2 lead. It was only the sixth homer allowed by Moylan in 75 appearances.

An even more unlikely shot came in the bottom half when Thorman, who had not homered since July 29, put Cordero's first pitch into the right-field seats. It was only the second homer allowed by the Brewers closer in 63 games.

The Brewers were at a loss even before the first pitch. Yost said ace Ben Sheets would not make his scheduled start Sunday because of a strained left hamstring. Chris Capuano, who has lost a franchise-record 12 straight decisions, will take Sheets' spot.

Yost said he doesn't know when Sheets will return to the rotation.

Milwaukee starter Yovani Gallardo gave up only three hits and two runs in seven innings to match Smoltz.

Smoltz didn't give up a hit until Hardy's two-out homer in the sixth. The Atlanta ace pitched a perfect seventh but leaned over in apparent pain after striking out Geoff Jenkins to end the inning.

Cox said Smoltz just felt a "pinch" in his shoulder that went away. Smoltz downplayed the problem, saying he is fine.

Smoltz, who was on the disabled list in early July with inflammation in his right shoulder, appeared to be trying to shake the shoulder loose earlier in the inning. He returned to pitch the eighth, and left after allowing only two hits and striking out eight.

"Smoltz was on his game," said Yost, the former Braves coach. "He looked like a 25-year-old."

The 40-year-old Smoltz is hoping for a return to the playoffs. The Braves have won seven of nine but are still also-rans in the NL East and wild-card race.

"We won," Smoltz said. "I don't care if my next game is 12-11, we want to win as many times as we can."

Jones had a sacrifice fly in the first and hit his 27th home run in the third.

Gallardo allowed only one baserunner -- on Jones' sixth-inning single -- through the next four innings.

With two outs in the sixth, Smoltz walked Weeks and lost his no-hit bid and the lead on Hardy's homer.

Notes

  • This was the 10th straight start Smoltz gave up three or fewer runs.
  • Smoltz lowered his ERA from 2.97 to 2.95, fourth in the NL.
  • Weeks walked to lead off the game and was picked off first base before Smoltz threw his first pitch to the next batter, Hardy. Weeks, who has 24 steals, was caught stealing for only the third time.
 
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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Willie Harris scores the winning run in the 11th inning, handing the Brewers a crushing loss.  (AP)
Willie Harris scores the winning run in the 11th inning, handing the Brewers a crushing loss. (AP)

Players of the Game
Atlanta

M. Teixeira
AB 5
R 0
H 1
HR 0
RBI 1
Milwaukee

J. Hardy
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Milwaukee Brewers
Rickie Weeks, 2B3100223 .230
J.J. Hardy, SS5122000 .275
Ryan Braun, 3B4000010 .319
    Chris Spurling, P0000000 .000
    Francisco Cordero, P0000000 .000
   a- Jeff Suppan, PH0000000 .123
    Seth McClung, P0000000 .000
    Brian Shouse, P0000000 .000
Prince Fielder, 1B3000220 .288
Corey Hart, RF5111011 .300
Geoff Jenkins, LF4000121 .260
Johnny Estrada, C3010001 .279
    Tony Gwynn Jr., PR0000000 .265
    Mike Rivera, C1010000 .600
    Mel Stocker, PR0000000 .000
    Damian Miller, C1000003 .240
Bill Hall, CF4010031 .256
Yovani Gallardo, P2000000 .256
   b- Gabe Gross, PH1000000 .236
    Derrick Turnbow, P0000000 .000
    Ray King, P0000000 .000
    Craig Counsell, 3B1000012 .220
Totals37363512  
a-hit a sacrifice bunt for Cordero in the 11th
b-grounded out for Gallardo in the 8th
Batting
HR - J.J. Hardy (26, Smoltz), Corey Hart (22, Moylan)
SH - Jeff Suppan (10)
RBI - J.J. Hardy 2 (78), Corey Hart (74)
2-OUT RBI - J.J. Hardy 2 (25)
SB - Mel Stocker (3, 2nd base off Moylan/McCann)
PK - Rickie Weeks (1, Smoltz)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Hardy-Weeks-Fielder
E - Rickie Weeks (13, Misplayed grounder)
Milwaukee Brewers
Yovani Gallardo 7322271 3.59
Derrick Turnbow0000100 4.26
Ray King 1000110 4.74
Chris Spurling 1000000 4.53
Francisco Cordero (BS,7) 1111011 2.83
Seth McClung (L,0-1)0010100 4.32
Brian Shouse0100000 3.02
Pitches-Strikes - Yovani Gallardo 104-58, Derrick Turnbow 5-1, Ray King 13-5, Chris Spurling 10-8, Francisco Cordero 13-8, Seth McClung 6-2, Brian Shouse 8-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Yovani Gallardo 6-8, Ray King 1-0, Chris Spurling 1-2, Francisco Cordero 2-0, Brian Shouse 1-0
Batters Faced - Yovani Gallardo 26, Derrick Turnbow 1, Ray King 3, Chris Spurling 3, Francisco Cordero 4, Seth McClung 1, Brian Shouse 2
Atlanta Braves
Kelly Johnson, 2B4100130 .279
Edgar Renteria, SS3010200 .333
    Willie Harris, PR0100000 .278
Chipper Jones, 3B4122001 .341
Mark Teixeira, 1B5011012 .307
Brian McCann, C3000101 .273
Jeff Francoeur, RF4000012 .290
Andruw Jones, CF4000010 .218
Matt Diaz, LF4000010 .333
John Smoltz, P2000020 .093
   a- Yunel Escobar, PH0000100 .328
    Pete Orr, PR0000000 .197
    Rafael Soriano, P0000000 .000
    Peter Moylan, P0000000 .000
    Royce Ring, P0000000 .000
    Octavio Dotel, P0000000 .000
   b- Scott Thorman, PH1111000 .221
    Ron Mahay, P0000000 .000
    Joey Devine, P0000000 .000
Totals3445459  
a-walked for Smoltz in the 8th
b-homered for Dotel in the 10th
Batting
HR - Chipper Jones (27, Gallardo), Scott Thorman (11, Cordero)
SF - Chipper Jones (5)
RBI - Chipper Jones 2 (98), Mark Teixeira (96), Scott Thorman (36)
2-OUT RBI - Chipper Jones (28), Scott Thorman (15)
SB - Pete Orr (1, 2nd base off King/Rivera)
Team LOB - 6
Atlanta Braves
John Smoltz 8222381 2.95
Rafael Soriano 1000020 3.09
Peter Moylan 0.1311001 1.86
Royce Ring 0.1000010 2.89
Octavio Dotel 0.1000010 4.55
Ron Mahay 0.1100100 2.67
Joey Devine (W,1-0) 0.2000100 1.35
IBB - Fielder by Ron Mahay, Jenkins by Joey Devine
Pitches-Strikes - John Smoltz 109-68, Rafael Soriano 19-13, Peter Moylan 16-9, Royce Ring 4-3, Octavio Dotel 6-3, Ron Mahay 8-3, Joey Devine 14-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Smoltz 7-8, Peter Moylan 1-0, Ron Mahay 1-0, Joey Devine 1-1
Batters Faced - John Smoltz 28, Rafael Soriano 3, Peter Moylan 4, Royce Ring 1, Octavio Dotel 1, Ron Mahay 3, Joey Devine 3
Game Information
Attendance - 42378
Game Time - 3:28
Temperature - 84
Umpires - Home - Marvin Hudson, First Base - Ed Montague, Second Base - Jerry Layne, Third Base - Chris Guccione