Reds 3, Braves 2, 10 Innings
CINCINNATI (AP) _ Chipper Jones’ two-out throwing error set up Cincinnati’s tying ninth-inning rally, and Dante Bichette singled home the winning run in the 10th as the Reds beat the Atlanta Braves 3-2 Monday night.
Jones’ poor throw to first let Cincinnati come back for only its fifth victory in 30 games against the Braves since 1997. This one was the most improbable of the bunch.
Chris Sexton started the winning rally with a single off Kerry Ligtenberg (2-2) and advanced on a sacrifice. After Ken Griffey Jr. was walked intentionally, Bichette lined a single to left, ending it with his third hit of the game.
Mark Wohlers, who got the final out in Atlanta’s 1995 World Series victory over Cleveland, faced his former team for the first time and gave up a double and a walk in the top of the 10th. Scott Sullivan (2-4) pitched out of the threat to get the win.
Defense and Greg Maddux’s impeccable pitching let the Braves take a 2-0 lead into the ninth against the only team in the majors that has yet to be shut out.
Right fielder Brian Jordan stretched over the wall to rob Griffey of a two-run homer in the sixth, erasing the only big mistake Maddux made in 7 1-3 innings.
John Rocker got booed loudly as he sprinted in from the bullpen to try to finish off the Reds, who had lost their last five and got down to their final out in this one.
With Bichette on second with a double and two outs, Chris Stynes hit a grounder to Jones at third. He fielded it cleanly but bounced his throw to first for an error.
Rocker then threw a wild pitch to send Bichette home from third, and Pokey Reese _ in a 3-for-28 slump _ doubled to tie it.
Maddux allowed six hits and didn’t walk a batter in 7 1-3 shutout innings, but wound up with a no-decision. He’s 0-3 in his last four starts, a slump due more to the Braves’ offense than his pitching. Atlanta has been shut out in two of the four games.
Rafael Furcal scored one run and singled home another off Steve Parris to give Maddux a 2-0 lead that stood up until the ninth.
Maddux didn’t go to a three-ball count on any batter until Griffey took him to a full count with one on and one out in the sixth. Griffey then sent a high arching shot to right as the 34,990 fans shrieked and flashbulbs popped.
Jordan drifted and perfectly timed his jump, stretching his glove over the wall to bring the ball back. It was a white speck near the top of the webbing when Jordan landed.
The fans groaned as the catch was replayed on the video board. Jordan’s teammates lined up to congratulate him when he reached the dugout.
Maddux and Griffey had never faced each other in a regular season game. Griffey singled sharply to right in his first at-bat, took a called third strike and was robbed by Jordan.
Brian Hunter, obtained by the Reds in a trade with Colorado on Sunday, showed up a half-hour before the game, started in left field, batted leadoff and went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and a groundout.
Notes: Maddux and Griffey each have won 10 consecutive Gold Gloves, the longest current streaks. ... Maddux is 5-0 in his last six starts against Cincinnati, allowing only four runs in 42 1-3 innings, a 0.85 ERA. ... The Reds extended their franchise record of 112 games without being shut out. ... The Reds designated OF Brooks Kieschnick for assignment to open a roster spot for Hunter. ... Hunter has yet to serve his three-game suspension for charging Cincinnati’s Scott Sullivan on July 15. Sullivan already has done his time.