Series: Game 2 of 3

Atlanta leads 2-0 (as of 9/11)

Game 1: Tuesday, September 10
New York 6Final
Atlanta 12
Game 2: Wednesday, September 11
New York 5Final
Atlanta 8
Game 3: Wednesday, September 11
New York 5Final
Atlanta 0

Mets 5

(68-76, 35-38 away)

Braves 8

(92-51, 49-24 home)

    1:05 PM ET, September 11, 2002

    Turner Field, Atlanta, Georgia 

    123456789 R H E
    NYM 000001013 5 - -
    ATL 00510002 - 8 - -

    W: K. Millwood (17-6)

    L: S. Trachsel (9-11)

    S: J. Smoltz (50)

    Chipper's two homers back up Millwood

    ATLANTA (AP) -- After homering for first time this season against the New York Mets, Chipper Jones was ready for another chance.

    ''It's a good day to play two,'' Jones quipped.

    He homered twice and had five RBI and Kevin Millwood won his eighth straight start, leading the Atlanta Braves over the New York Mets 8-5 Wednesday in the opener of a split doubleheader.

    John Smoltz got the final out in the ninth inning for his 50th save in 54 chances, becoming the seventh pitcher to reach 50 saves.

    On the anniversary of last year's terrorist attacks, the Mets once again wore hats honoring the Fire Department of New York, the New York Police Department and the Port Authority Police Department. They wore similar hats during the final weeks of last season. ''It's a day to remember,'' New York manager Bobby Valentine said. ''If it brings back memories, it's a good thing. Once the game got started, it was just another game.''

    Millwood (17-6) struggled through 5 2/3 innings, giving up seven hits, walking three and throwing 107 pitches. But he limited New York to one run before leaving with runners on first and second. Chris Hammond got out of the jam when Roger Cedeno flied out.

    ''I was kind of all over the place,'' Millwood said. ''My control wasn't very good. I just felt like I battled the whole time. Nothing came easy.''

    The Braves, who clinched the NL East title Monday, won for the fifth time in six games. Mark DeRosa went 4-for-5 and hit a solo home run in the fourth.

    New York lost its second straight following a seven-game winning streak and their magic number for postseason elimination was cut to four.

    ''Not that my focus was not on the game, but if affects you a little,'' Mets catcher Vance Wilson said of playing on Sept. 11. ''We are human. It helps the healing.''

    Jones put Atlanta ahead with a three-run homer off Steve Trachsel (9-11) in a five-run third inning, then hit a two-run homer against Satoru Komiyama in the eighth. Jones raised his season total to 24 homers with his third multihomer game this season and the 26th of his career.

    Jones, a career .348 hitter against the Mets entering Wednesday's game, had his first RBI against Atlanta's NL East rival since June 23, 2001. He had played 11 games against them since without driving in a run.

    ''I'm just streaky,'' he said. ''I was wondering where the power stroke had gone. But better late than never.''

    If the Braves keep winning, Smoltz could have a shot at the major league-record for saves: 57, set by Bobby Thigpen of the Chicago White Sox in 1990. Randy Myers and Trevor Hoffman hold the NL record of 53.

    ''I keep thinking back through all the stuff that I've gone through,'' Smoltz said. ''It's just amazing that I could reached this level this quick. I don't know what to say other than I'm trying to go out there and better myself, get ready for the postseason.''

    After Chipper Jones' third-inning homer, Andruw Jones lined a ball at Trachsel, who appeared to cover his body with his hands before being hit. Wilson fielded the ball but threw late to first.

    After a brief consultation with manager Bobby Valentine, Trachsel was replaced by Jeff D'Amico. Henry Blanco and Millwood followed with RBI singles.

    ''It's sore right now,'' Trachsel said. ''It was the first comebacker to get me out of the game. I usually get hit once or twice a year.''

    Pinch-hitter John Valentin had an RBI single in the sixth, Edgardo Alfonzo homered off Tim Spooneybarger in the eighth, and Mike Piazza hit a two-run double off Mike Remlinger in a three-run ninth.

    Game notes

    Franco flied out to center in his first at-bat, then walked three straight times. ... DeRosa's four hits set a career high. ... Chipper Jones last drove in five runs last Oct. 5, against the Marlins. ... The flag poles outside the stadium, which usually have flags from the other teams in the National League, had American flags at half-staff.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press