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Padres' Young strikes out eight to defeat Braves

• Figure this: In two starts against Atlanta last season, Young went 0-1 and allowed 13 hits and 15 runs in six innings.

• Ahead of schedule: Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez hit his ninth homer of the year in the second inning. Gonzalez didn't get No. 9 last season until June 18.

• Fantasy stat: San Diego closer Trevor Hoffman earned his ninth save in 11 chances this year.

• Quotable: "Last year was last year. It doesn't matter." -- Young

-- ESPN.com news services

Padres 4, Braves 2

ATLANTA (AP) -- Chris Young insisted last year doesn't matter,
and he proved it Monday night.

Young put his 2006 struggles against the Braves behind him,
striking out eight in six innings to lead the San Diego Padres over
Atlanta 4-2.

Last year, Young went 0-1 against the Braves in two starts --
both at San Diego -- giving up 13 runs and 15 hits in six innings, a
19.50 ERA.

Young (4-2) allowed two runs and two hits in this one, walking
two as the Padres won for the fifth time in six games.

"Last year was last year. It doesn't matter," Young said. "I
felt good tonight. My fastball had a lot of life. I tried to
establish it early."

The 6-foot-10 right-hander struck out seven in the first four
innings, allowing only one hit. Unbeaten in 25 straight road starts
before losing at Los Angeles on April 15, Young is 2-2 away from
home this season.

"When a guy's that tall, they look like they're releasing the
ball right in your face," Atlanta's Chris Woodward said. "That
makes it kind of tough, especially a guy who throws pretty hard.
That's why Randy Johnson was so good. He looks like he's handing
the ball to the catcher."

Young has allowed five hits in his last two starts, including
three hits over eight innings in a 3-0 win over Washington.

"He pitched great -- again," Padres manager Bud Black said.
"He had the Braves off-balance. He only gave up two hits against a
great lineup."

Young felt confident leaving with a two-run lead.

"With our bullpen if you can turn it over with a lead, I'll
take my chances," he said.

Scott Linebrink, Heath Bell and Trevor Hoffman completed the
three-hitter, with Hoffman getting his ninth save in 11 chances to
finish off San Diego's third straight victory.

Chuck James (3-3) gave up two runs, three hits and four walks in
3 2/3 innings, the first time in seven starts this season he has
not lasted five innings. James threw 94 pitches.

"We had some great at-bats," Black said. "We laid off some
good changeups. It wears down a starting pitcher when he has to
make pitches."

Braves reliever Chad Paronto hit Young on his left leg with a
pitch in the sixth, one inning after Young hit Jeff Francoeur.
Plate umpire Jim Joyce warned both benches.

"That's just part of the game," Young said. "It's a lot
better than hitting one of our position players."

Adrian Gonzalez homered in the second and Kevin Kouzmanoff made
it 2-0 with a bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the fourth. After James
reloaded the bases with a walk to Young, Oscar Villarreal relieved
and got Marcus Giles to ground into a forceout.

San Diego made it 3-0 in the fifth when Brian Giles scored from
second when Woodward, the shortstop, threw wildly to first
attempting to complete a double play on Josh Bard's grounder.

Atlanta closed within a run in the bottom half after a walk, hit
batter and balk, getting Scott Thorman's RBI grounder and
Woodward's run-scoring triple.

Paronto forced in a run in the sixth with a bases-loaded walk to
Jose Cruz Jr.

Game Notes
Braves SS Edgar Renteria was held out due to flu symptoms.
Woodward was the fill-in starter, one day after he subbed for
Chipper Jones at third base. ... Gonzalez has 19 RBIs in his last
16 games. ... Mike Cameron had two hits and his fourth stolen base.
... Brian Giles stole his first base of the season.