Originally created 04/28/04

Giants ace earns win



SAN FRANCISCO - Barry Bonds is finally getting some of the help he desperately needs to revive the slumping San Francisco Giants.

Jason Schmidt earned his first win of the season, and the Giants defeated the Atlanta Braves 3-2 on Monday night.

"He's our No. 1 starter, he's supposed to stop the bleeding," Bonds said. "That's why he's the No. 1 guy."

Bonds still needs more help from the rest of the lineup to force teams to pitch to him. The slugger went 0-for-1 with three walks - two intentional - leaving the six-time National League MVP with 667 career homers. He's already walked 30 times this year.

"Boring," Bonds said.

Schmidt (1-2) became the first of San Francisco's top three starters to win this year - lefty Kirk Rueter is 0-2 and right-hander Brett Tomko is 0-1. Schmidt allowed two runs and six hits in five innings. He struck out six and walked four.

Schmidt won 17 games last season and led the NL in ERA, but the Giants had not scored a run for him this year until going ahead 3-0 in the third inning.

"That was really nice," he said. "It was like last year's team that would come out and score three runs off the bat."

Mark DeRosa hit a two-run homer to pull the Braves to 3-2 in the fifth, then four Giants relievers kept Atlanta hitless the rest of the way.

This was certainly a solid start to a series for the Giants, who had lost nine of 11 and have dropped three straight series only a year after notching 100 victories.

Jim Brower got six straight outs in two innings of relief, and Matt Herges pitched the ninth for his seventh save in eight chances.