Originally created 07/27/06

Late-inning homers give Braves a boost

ATLANTA - As the huge monitor in center field reeled off the starting lineup for the Atlanta Braves, two names attracted intense cheers from the crowd of 33,209 fans.

One name, really, spoken twice: Jones.

After a shared three-game hiatus, Andruw and Chipper Jones returned to the lineup. It made all the difference.

Andruw Jones launched a game-tying home run on the first pitch in the bottom of the eighth, not long after Chipper Jones scored a run in the sixth that gave Atlanta a brief lead.

And not long after Andruw Jones' home run, Adam LaRoche smashed one of his own to give the Braves a 6-5 win Wednesday night against the Florida Marlins.

LaRoche's performance wasn't bad, either. He was 3-for-3 and scored twice. It was also the first baseman's seventh home run since the All-Star break.

John Smoltz (8-5) managed to pick up a win despite three shaky innings. Taylor Tankersley (1-1), who gave up the LaRoche home run, came away with the loss.

Bob Wickman made his first apperance at Turner Field and picked up his second save as a Brave, and his 17th of the season.

Wickman gave up one hit in the ninth to close out the win.

The only thing that didn't go right for the Joneses?

Despite the walk that gave him a chance to score, Chipper Jones went 0-for-3 to snap a 20-game hitting streak.

With one out, Jeff Francoeur and LaRoche singled. Francoeur scored on Ryan Langerhans' double, and a bunt by Smoltz got LaRoche home.

But Langerhans tried to follow LaRoche home, where first baseman Mike Jacobs easily cut him down.

Brian McCann's 405-foot blast to center made it 3-0.

The Marlins knocked Smoltz around for three runs on four hits in the sixth. Smoltz would also give up a run each in the seventh and the eighth that gave Florida a 5-4 lead.

Reach Brandon Larrabee at brandon.larrabee@morris.com.


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