No ‘BP’ No Problem for Galarraga, Braves
No batting practice was no problem for Andres Galarraga and the Atlanta Braves.
With an early afternoon game following a night game, the Braves passed on batting practice Wednesday, taking it instead during the game against the New York Mets.
Galarraga hit two towering home runs as Atlanta drilled five Mets pitchers for 16 hits in a 12-1 romp at New York.
“Maybe we should never take batting practice,” Manager Bobby Cox said. “No BP. That’s one of the first things I would have heard if we didn’t hit at all.”
Galarraga drove in five runs with his 29th and 30th home runs. The first one, in the first inning, bounced off the back wall of the Braves’ bullpen in left field. The second, in a six-run fourth inning, soared well beyond the bullpen and was measured at 440 feet.
“That might be the longest I’ve hit this year,” said Galarraga, who had a 500-plus foot shot in Florida last season.
Pittsburgh 3, Chicago 0--Francisco Cordova pitched eight shutout innings to outduel Kerry Wood and stop a five-game losing streak, and Kevin Young’s two-run homer carried the Pirates at Pittsburgh.
Wood (8-5), making his first start against the Pirates, took a two-hit shutout into the sixth inning only to lose it on Jason Kendall’s leadoff walk and Young’s first-pitch drive over the left-field wall.
Young also drove in the Pirates’ third run when reliever Dave Stevens hit him in the back with the bases loaded in the seventh.
Cordova (7-8) did the rest, giving up four hits, striking out eight and walking none in his best start since shutting out the Giants on April 23. Ricardo Rincon pitched the ninth for his 10th save.
Milwaukee 3, Philadelphia 2--Scott Karl won the first time in a month, giving up one earned run in seven innings as the Brewers won at Milwaukee.
Karl (7-4), who last won on June 12, gave up two runs, one earned, and five hits, striking out three and walking two.
Al Reyes pitched the eighth and Bob Wickman got into a jam in the ninth, but worked out of it for his 14th save in 15 opportunities by striking out Rico Brogna and Mike Lieberthal with the bases loaded.
Curt Schilling (9-9) gave up three runs and eight hits for his major-league best ninth complete game. Schilling, who entered the game tied with Seattle’s Randy Johnson for the major-league strikeout lead, struck out four to push his total to 189.
Montreal 9, Florida 5--Rondell White went four for four and Montreal’s Carlos Perez won for the first time in eight starts as the Expos won at Miami.
Perez (7-9) gave up four runs and nine hits in 6 2/3 innings to break a career-long six-game losing streak. The left-hander had won a career-best six in a row before the losing streak began on June 9.
Mark Grudzielanek went three for four with two doubles and three RBIs before leaving the game in the seventh because of heat exhaustion.
Florida Manager Jim Leyland was ejected in the fourth inning after a bizarre base-running sequence when two Expos passed each other on the basepaths.
Trailing, 4-1, after three innings, the Expos scored three runs in the fourth and three more in the fifth to take a 7-4 lead.
San Diego 6, Colorado 2--evin Brown won his eighth consecutive decision and tied a career-high by striking out 10, and Steve Finley hit a three-run homer as the Padres won at Denver.
Greg Vaughn and Wally Joyner added three hits apiece for the Padres, who improved to 22-6 against National League West opponents and a franchise-high 27 games over .500 (61-34).
Brown (11-3), whose last loss came May 21 at Pittsburgh, gave up a season-high 12 hits but pitched around several broken-bat bloopers. He walked one in his third complete game of the year.
Houston at Arizona--Astro reliever Billy Wagner was hit in the head by a line drive and taken off the field on a stretcher in the ninth inning at Phoenix, in a game that was tied, 8-8, in the 10th as this edition went to press.
Wagner barely had time to react to Kelly Stinnett’s liner and was knocked flat. Wagner was conscious and talking to the trainers that rushed to him. A medical team immobilized his head and put him on a stretcher before driving him off the field on a cart. The bruise on the left side of Wagner’s head had already swelled.