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Millwood, Braves Stop Cardinals


Mark McGwire did not hit the ball out of the park this weekend. He didn't even hit it out of the infield.

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  • Atlanta Braves again shut down McGwire as Kevin Millwood pitched them to a 4-3 win Sunday over the St. Louis Cardinals.

    The major league home run leader was hitless in 11 at-bats in the three-game series, striking out seven times. McGwire went 0-for-4 and struck out three times in the wrapup.

    "Sometimes you're not very good," McGwire said. "That's the way it is. I wasn't very good this weekend."

    Since hitting his 45th home run against Milwaukee last Tuesday, McGwire has gone 18 at-bats without homering.

    "It's pretty amazing how we were able to pitch to him so effectively," Millwood said. "It's tough to shut him down for three days like that."

    Millwood (12-6) gave up six hits and struck out eight, including McGwire twice.

    Rudy Seanez struck out two in a scoreless eighth and Kerry Ligtenberg pitched a perfect ninth for his 16th save.

    Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said a couple of factors contributed to his slugger's slump.

    "I think it's a combination of being pitched well and being a little off," La Russa said. "He chased some pitches and they made some good ones. It was a combination of a lot of things."

    Braves manager Bobby Cox says no one should expect McGwire's problems to continue.

    "He can hit anybody any time," Cox said. "Somebody's going to pay for not doing good here. I'm glad we're not about to play him three games."

    "He might hit anywhere from two t seven home runs in a three-game series," Cox said. "He's that good. We felt fortunate to get out of here with zero."

    The Braves overcame a 2-1 deficit with three unearned runs in the fifth inning. Walt Weiss singled and one out later Chipper Jones was safe when shortstop Luis Ordaz -- called up from Triple-A Memphis earlier in the day -- misplayed a grounder.

    Ryan Klesko and Javy Lopez followed with run-scoring singles and Greg Colbrunn doubled in the last run to chase Bobby Witt (1-3).

    The Braves took a 1-0 lead in the first when Keith Lockhart walked and scored on Klesko's double.

    "I really hit some good pitches today," Klesko said. "I was fortunate to hit them where they weren't."

    St. Louis took a 2-1 lead in the fourth. Ray Lankford walked, stole second and scored on Willie McGee's single. Witt doubled home McGee.

    The Cardinals cut the lead to 4-3 in the sixth when McGee doubled and scored on a single by Ordaz.

    Witt gave up four runs and seven hits in 4 2-3 innings with one walk and five strikeouts.

    Notes:

  • The victory lifted the Braves to a season-high 36 games over .500 at 74-58.
  • For the second day in a row the teams wore throwback uniforms to the Negro League days. The victory made Atlanta 6-0 when wearing throwback uniforms since 1997.
  • Sunday's attendance was 49,296, lifting the series total to 150,095 -- the largest for a three-game series in franchise history. The previous record was 148,095 for three games against Pittsburgh on April 22-24, 1994.

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