1994 NEWS

1994 News > 5/18/94


By IJ Rosenberg, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

So what's the big deal? Braves left-hander Tom Glavine wins again at Riverfront Stadium,a 3-1 triumph over the Reds to push his record here to a perfect 11-0.

But this one was special. This time there were four bottles of champagne on ice in his locker when he finished.

For the 28-year-old Glavine, this was career win No.100.

"I guess this is one-third of the way where every pitcher wants to be," he said, getting ready to pour his first glass of bubbly. "I hope I have a lot more in me."

Still, despite a marvelous effort by Glavine and a four-hit night for Fred McGriff, this was a game the Braves could easily have lost.

Glavine pitched seven scoreless innings, but was too tired to go further and with a 2-0 lead, manager Bobby Cox had to go to what has been mostly a shaky bullpen.

Just 24 hours earlier, closer Greg McMichael blew a ninth-inning lead and lost it in the l0th. This time, McMichael never got out of his seat, and Cox turned it over to Mark Wohlers. He gave up a run in the eighth before McGriff stole it back in the ninth on an RBI double. But in the ninth with two outs,the Reds had Bret Boone at first and Cox went to left-hander Mike Stanton to face switch-hitter Thomas Howard.

Howard looped a hit into right which second baseman Mark Lemke tried to run down, but ended up kicking. Howard headed for second while David Justice, leading the outfielders with five errors, grabbed the ball and threw toward shortstop Rafael Belliard.

"A lot of times when I see a guy going, I rush my throw," said Justice. "But I set and just tried to hit Raffy in the chest with the ball."

That's exactly what happened, as Belliard took the ball into his chest and made the tag on Howard.

Then the champagne flowed.

Glavine, who has won 71 of his last 100 decisions and was 2-3 at one point this Season, won his third straight and lowered his ERA to 2.76. His record at Riverfront is breathtaking. In 12 starts, he has pitched 91 innings, gotten 11 wins and one no-decision, and allowed just 20 runs.

"If I knew what I was doing right here, I would definitely use it in other parks," he said. "My elbow was getting stiff in the seventh and I didn't want to go out there and try to be a hero. I've had that backfire on me before."

The Reds put only two runners in scoring position with Glavine on the mound, collecting two hits.

"The man has composure,he is nice and smooth," said Reds cleanup hitter Kevin Mitchell. "He can get that change-up over when he wants and spots the ball well. When a man pitches that well, you got to tip your hat to him.If we can't beat him, maybe he can join us here."

Glavine did receive help from McGriff, who moved his average to .312 and is off to one of his best starts ever. He hit his 12th homer, had two singles and a double and now has 28 RBIs.

"That was my best game of the year," he said. "I really felt like I was on top of every pitch."