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Braves Hold 1st - Slam Philly


Already a part-time outfielder, Gerald Williams' playing time will be reduced following Atlanta's acquisition of Jose Hernandez just before the trade deadline.

But the trade didn't seem to bother Williams on Sunday, when he hit a tiebreaking grand slam in the Braves' 12-4 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

"You have to be prepared all the time, whether you're an everyday player or not," he said.

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  • Hernandez, who will play outfield and shortstop, will join the Braves on Tuesday in Pittsburgh along with former Cubs pitcher Terry Mulholland.

    "Every year I've been here, the front office has made a point of doing what's necessary to give our club a boost down the stretch," said Chipper Jones, who homered twice and drove in three runs. "Now it's up to us to get the job done on the field."

    The Braves, seeking their eighth division title of the decade, started the day with a half-game lead over the New York Mets, who played the Chicago Cubs.

    The Phillies jumped to a 4-0 start in the first inning against Braves starter Greg Maddux, but were held to only four hits the rest of the way.

    Maddux (12-6) allowed four runs, four hits and one walk in the first inning before settling down to give up just two hits in his final six frames. The right-hander threw 27 pitches in the first inning, only 59 over the next six.

    "We got some big hits Gerald, Chipper, Bret Boone and Eddie (Perez) they all bailed me out," said Maddux, who briefly entered the Atlanta dugout in the top of the first to make an equipment adjustment.

    Maddux also figured in a Braves' rally in the fourth inning. With runners on first and second and one outMaddux laid down a bunt that Phillies starter Randy Wolf (5-3) bobbled as he tried to get the force at third.

    Williams, the next batter, then hit his third career grand slam for an 8-4 lead, knocking out Wolf. The rookie left-hander allowed eight runs and seven hits in 3 1-3 innings. Wolf has lost three straight starts.

    "I didn't consider myself going against Maddux," said Wolf, who has given up 18 earned runs and 23 hits in his last 13 2-3 innings. "I was going against the Braves' lineup, and I was not intimidated by the Braves."

    Steve Schrenk came in and allowed solo homers to Chipper Jones and Andruw Jones.

    Chipper Jones, who batted .413 (33-for-80) with 11 homers and 17 RBI in July, hit a two-run shot in the first and a solo homer in the fourth. He has 27 homers this season, including three multihomer games. Jones has nine multihomer games in his career.

    "It's a sign of a good ballclub, one that can handle adversity and persevere through some tough situations," Jones said when asked about the tight NL East race. "It was pretty hot out there (98 degrees). It would've been easy to kind of let your mind wander."

    Andruw Jones hit a solo homer, his 22nd, in the fifth off Schrenk.

    Maddux, who improved to 23-11 lifetime against Philadelphia, is 88-2 since the 1991 All-Star break when his team scores five or more runs.

    Scott Rolen had an RBI double in the first, and Bobby Abreu and Kevin Jordan added RBI singles. Rico Brogna drove in a run with a grounder, giving him 16 RBIs in his last 15 games.

    "We did exactly what we had hoped for we got a four-run lead on Maddux," Phillies manager Terry Francona said. "But after that first inning, Maddux was on cruise control."

    Notes:

  • With Braves manager Bobby Cox indicating he'll keep 11 pitchers, part-time 1B-OF Brian Hunter could be the odd man out.
  • Abreu has hit safely in eight of his last nine and 13 of his last 15 games.
  • Boone, who doubled twice, entered hitting .194 in his last 170 at-bats. His RBI double in the third cut the Phillies' lead to 4-2.
  • Pere, playing for the first time since being ejected Friday, went 2-for-4 and scored two runs. The Braves' catcher has a .313 average (25-for-80) in his last 24 games. Perez is hitting .249 for the season.
  • Phillies GM Ed Wade said he talked trade with eight clubs Saturday, estimating he had 20 conversations in all.

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