Jones’ catch helps Braves hold on to beat Marlins 4-3
ATLANTA (AP)—Since he won the first of nine straight Gold Gloves in 1998, Andruw Jones has made spectacular plays seem routine.
The Braves’ center fielder was at it again on Tuesday night, diving hard to his left to catch a line drive in the eighth inning with the potential tying run on base, a play that kept Atlanta’s slim playoff hopes alive.
“The game was on the line right there,” Jones said. “You let that go by, it’s probably going to be a double or maybe a triple. It was one of those do-or-die catches.”
Atlanta scored all its runs on two-out singles and the Braves used seven pitchers to beat the Florida Marlins 4-3 on Tuesday night.
It was the Braves’ third straight win and fourth in five games. Despite trimming four games off New York’s lead in the NL East over the last five days, Atlanta is still in third place in the division, 5 1/2 games behind the Mets with 11 games remaining.
The Marlins cut the lead to 4-3 in the seventh on Miguel Cabrera’s two-run single.
“The funny thing is, it’s the most unbelievable catch you’ll see all night, one of the top plays,” Braves left fielder Matt Diaz said. “But the whole time he was going for it, I fully expected it. Sadly, we take it for granted. We are spoiled.”
Rafael Soriano pitched the ninth for his seventh save in 10 chances as the Marlins lost their third straight.
Jeff Francoeur, Edgar Renteria, Yunel Escobar and Brian McCann had the run-scoring singles for the Braves. Francoeur’s came in the first, Renteria’s in the second and Escobar’s in the fourth. McCann’s single in the fifth gave the Braves a 4-1 lead and chased rookie Chris Seddon (0-1).
“I was seeing the ball too good, and I got a bloop single,” McCann said. “I stayed on a slider, and he left it at the belt for me.”
Making his second career start and facing Atlanta for the first time, Seddon allowed nine hits, four runs—three earned—with one walk and one strikeout in 4 2-3 innings.
“We hit some balls really hard,” Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “But they’re allowed to catch the ball, and that’s what they did.”
Tyler Yates began the seventh and recorded both outs, but he was charged with both runs.
Rookie Jo-Jo Reyes (1-2) earned his first career victory after allowing three hits, one run and three walks in five innings. The left-hander struck out seven.
After watching Diaz chase down Dan Uggla’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly against the wall in the third, Reyes was grateful for the breezy, humid conditions that kept some balls in the park.
“I’m thankful for the air tonight,” Reyes said. “It was real thick, so the guys were able to make those catches.”
Peter Moylan pitched a scoreless sixth thanks to a 6-4-3 double play that stranded Cabrera at third.
Gonzalez announced that Daniel Barone will start Wednesday instead of Dontrelle Willis. The Marlins want Willis to face the Mets in Miami on Thursday. … McCann became the fourth Atlanta regular to get 90 RBIs with the Braves, joining Francoeur (101), Chipper Jones (93) and Andruw Jones (91). Teixeira has 92 RBIs, 45 with Texas. … Atlanta improved to 59-32 against the Marlins at Turner Field. … Batting for the first time since July 4, 2004, Mahay popped out to end the seventh.