ATLANTA (AP) -- Chipper Jones blushed over his 399th homer. Greg Norton was just relieved that he drove in more runs than he gave up with his shaky defense.
The torrid-hitting Jones moved within one homer of No. 400, hitting a three-run shot, and Norton came through with a two-run double in the eighth inning that rallied the Atlanta Braves to another come-from-behind victory, 5-4 over the slumping Florida Marlins on Tuesday night.Jones moved ahead of former Braves great Dale Murphy on the career list, and pulled into a tie with Hall of Famer Al Kaline and one of Jones' ex-teammates, Andres Galarraga.The next homer -- and it shouldn't take long the way Jones is hitting -- will make him the 43rd player in baseball history with 400."I don't ever think about that kind of stuff until you bring it up," Jones told reporters. "It makes me blush."His face actually was a light shade of red, though that may have had more to do with the sweltering night at Turner Field -- 87 degrees for the first pitch.Jones, who actually managed to raise an average that already was over .400, sparked the Braves in the eighth with a leadoff single against Matt Lindstrom (1-1). Mark Teixeira followed with a double into the left-field corner, putting runners at second and third.Norton, a .171-hitting utilityman forced to start because the Braves have two outfielders on the disabled list, drove the first pitch he saw just inside the first-base bag. The ball didn't stop rolling until it got to the corner, bringing home the tying and winning runs.Out in left field, Norton had another adventurous night. He lost a fly ball in the lights, but managed to make the catch before falling on his rear end."It's some kind of comedy with me in left field," said the 35-year-old Norton, who's played mostly infield in his career. "I'm just trying to dive in more runs than I give up."The Braves actually won a one-run game, improving their mark in those contests to 3-16, despite two more homers by Florida's slugging second baseman, Dan Uggla."Close games are tough," Uggla said. "We won a lot of close games in April."Now, they're losing them. The Marlins have dropped six of their last seven to slide out of first in the NL East.Will Ohman (3-0) won for the second night in a row with a scoreless inning. Rafael Soriano worked a perfect ninth for his second save."Soriano was really good," manager Bobby Cox said. "Ohman's been doing the job. He's kind of the unsung hero of the bullpen."John Smoltz never got up for the Braves. The starter-turned-closer's ailing shoulder was sore after his first appearance out of the bullpen since 2004. He gave up two runs in the ninth on Monday, blowing a save chance, but the Braves rallied to win on Yunel Escobar's 10th-inning homer.Jones homered in the first, giving Atlanta a quick 3-1 lead, and finished 2-for-4 to push his average from .407 to .409.Uggla led off second by hitting a 2-2 pitch into the left-field seats. Atlanta starter Jorge Campillo knew he left a fat one over the heart of the plate, shaking his head in disgust as soon as the Florida slugger connected.But Uggla wasn't done.Two innings later, he practically swung one-handed to reach a low pitch from Campillo, the ball soaring toward left and barely clearing the wall to give the Marlins a 4-3 lead. It was Uggla's 18th homer and third two-homer game of the season.He's on his way to his best season yet after hitting 31 homers a year ago and 27 in 2006."It doesn't really matter when you don't win," Uggla said.Campillo had his worst showing of a surprisingly effective season, lasting only four innings. He surrendered six hits and four runs -- one more than he had given up in 23 2/3 innings coming in.Hanley Ramirez led off the game with a double, moved to third on a groundout and scored on Jorge Cantu's sacrifice fly.Florida starter Burke Badenhop got in a big jam right away. Yunel Escobar led off the bottom of the first with a single, and Kelly Johnson followed with a walk. That brought up Jones, who turned a 2-1 pitch into a monstrous drive that went out in center."It was a sinker that didn't sink enough," Badenhop said.The youngster, who came into the game with a 6.75 ERA, settled down after Jones' homer. Badenhop allowed only one more hit over his five-inning stint, though he did have to work around four walks in all.
The Marlins optioned LHP Taylor Tankersley to Triple-A Albuquerque after the game. They'll call up a replacement before Wednesday's contest. "We needed to send him down and get him some work," manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "We just weren't using him enough." ... The Braves improved to 24-7 at Turner Field.