Originally created 05/14/00

Jackets' Ford hits three homers

MACON, Ga. -- Those juiced balls they've been using in the big leagues finally arrived in Macon on Saturday night. And Augusta abused them just a little more than Macon, winning 13-12 in 10 innings, on, surprise, surprise, a home run.

Lew Ford connected off Jason Mikels to open up the 10th inning. It was Ford's third homer of the night and finished off his 3-for-7, eight RBI and four run night. It also completed the GreenJackets comeback from an 11-2 deficit.

The blown nine-run lead comes on the heels of a 4-3 13-inning loss at Charleston on Friday night and had the Braves (16-21) frustrated afterwards.

Thanks to Ford, the GreenJackets hammered four home runs Saturday. As odd as the offensive display was, the strangest thing of all might be Ford playing the role of Mark McGwire.

Ford entered Saturday's game with one homer this year and eight in his two-year professional career. He hit his first professional grand slam to cut Macon's lead to 11-8 in the sixth, and had never hit three homers in one game at any level.

"I really wasn't trying to hit them out," Ford said. "They were just pitching me inside all night and I got good wood on the ball. I knew the grand slam was gone as soon as I hit it, but the last one, I wasn't really sure about."

The grand slam was the second homer Ford hit off starter Ben Kozlowski, who seemed to have his first win of the season wrapped up when the Braves jumped on top 11-2 in the fourth. Even after the grand slam, the Braves seemed a sure thing, but instead Kozlowski got a no decision and remains at 0-4.

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