Final

Series: Game 3 of 3

Atlanta won 2-1

Game 1: Tuesday, August 2
Atlanta12Final
in 10
Cincinnati2
Game 2: Wednesday, August 3
Atlanta5Final
Cincinnati8
Game 3: Thursday, August 4
Atlanta7Final
Cincinnati4

Braves 7

(63-46, 28-31 away)

Reds 4

(48-60, 32-27 home)

    7:10 PM ET, August 4, 2005

    Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati, Ohio 

    123456789 R H E
    ATL 001201012 7 13 1
    CIN 000201010 4 6 1

    W: K. Davies (6-3)

    L: A. Harang (7-10)

    S: C. Reitsma (15)

    Braves overcome Casey's two homers to win

    CINCINNATI (AP) -- In a game that featured four home runs, a bunt by a pitcher helped Atlanta to another win.

    Rookie Kyle Davies drove in a run and helped set up another with a squeeze bunt as the Braves earned their ninth win in 12 games by beating the Cincinnati Reds 7-4 Thursday night.

    "Davies is a good athlete," Atlanta manager Bobby Cox said. "He can bunt, he can run and he can hit."

    Andruw Jones hit his 33rd home run to take over the National League lead, and Jeff Francoeur also connected as the Braves overcame Sean Casey's two homers and four RBI to win the three-game series.

    Francoeur and Rafael Furcal each drove in two runs to help Davies improve to 4-1 in his last seven starts. The first-place Braves maintained their 4½-game lead over Washington in the NL East.

    Davies (6-3) retired 11 of the first 12 batters he faced and allowed four hits, three runs and three walks in 5 2-3 innings. His seven strikeouts were one shy of matching the career high he set in his last start Saturday against Pittsburgh.

    "He made some pitches to get out of jams," Cox said. "It was good to see him get out of some jams with strikeouts."

    Former Red Chris Reitsma pitched a perfect ninth for his 15th save in 19 opportunities.

    "It's a good way to end the series," Cox said. "The game's always in jeopardy here, no matter what the lead."

    Reds starter Aaron Harang (7-10), who leads the team in wins, gave up eight hits and four runs with three walks and one strikeout in six innings.

    Jones, who was tied with Cincinnati's Adam Dunn and Chicago's Derrek Lee for the NL lead in homers, hit the first pitch he saw from Harang in the third inning 434 feet to center field to give Atlanta a 1-0 lead. Center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. just turned and watched the ball hit the black batter's eye and bounce back onto the field.

    Davies made it 2-0 in the fourth by laying down a squeeze bunt that allowed Brian McCann to score from third and Wilson Betemit to advance to second. Furcal followed with an RBI single to right.

    Davies walked Dunn and gave up a two-run homer to Casey with two outs in the fourth. Casey's homer was his sixth of the season and second at Great American Ball Park.

    McCann led off the fifth with a single and moved to third on Betemit's single. Betemit advanced on another bunt by Davies, and McCann scored on Furcal's one-out sacrifice fly.

    Davies issued back-to-back walks to open the fifth, but Harang popped two bunt attempts foul before striking out looking. Ryan Freel also struck out looking, and Felipe Lopez grounded out to end the inning.

    "[Harang] helped by botching up the first two pitches," Davies said. "Then, I was going for the strikeout. I felt good about facing Freel because I've faced him in the minor leagues."

    Francoeur greeted reliever Brian Shackelford with his seventh homer of the season leading off the eighth. Casey hit his second homer of the game in the bottom half, a two-out solo shot to right-center field off Kyle Farnsworth. The Reds got two more runners on base, but Edwin Encarnacion grounded out to end the threat.

    Atlanta added two more runs in the ninth on singles by Adam LaRoche and Francoeur off David Weathers.

    "This was the kind of game where, if we get the big hit in the eighth to put us ahead and shut them down in the ninth, I would have been happy with the win, but I wouldn't have been happy with the way we played," Reds manager Jerry Narron said.

    "I was disappointed. It just goes to show that, when you play the best clubs in baseball, you've got to play a clean game. You have to execute and do those things to beat a good ballclub."

    Game notes


    Marcus Giles singled in the first inning to extend his season-best hitting streak to nine games. ... Casey's homer also gave him a nine-game hitting streak. His four RBI tied the season high he set on May 18 at New York. The two-homer game was his first of the season and 10th of his career. ... Harang struck out looking twice to extend his league-worst hitless streak to 42 at-bats, the longest of his career and the longest by a Reds batter since RHP Jack Billingham went 0-for-67 in 1973 ... Atlanta is 14-3 in McCann's 17 starts behind the plate. ... Reds LHP Eric Milton turned 30 Thursday.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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