The Braves beat the Expos 4-0, and with a win tomorrow and a Phillies loss can clinch the division. Andruw Jones had two two-run homers, then left the game after being beaned by Tomo Ohka. If Ohka isn’t suspended it will be a farce, but Andruw should be okay. Greg Maddux wasn’t sharp (seven hits and three walks allowed), but didn’t give up any runs in five innings, and four relievers pitched an inning apiece, with Remlinger allowing the only baserunner on a walk. (Chris Hammond also pitched to one batter, whom he hit in retaliation for Andruw getting beaned.)
Chipper didn’t play due to a stiff neck. Speaking of stiffs, Vinny Castilla was 0-4 and is now hitting .227. As I expected, Marcus Giles, who has two homers, two doubles, five RBI and three runs scored in the last two games, did not play today because the last thing Bobby wants is for Marcus to get hot and be impossible to take out of the lineup.
Tom Glavine pitches tomorrow in what possibly will be the clincher. If not, the Braves should finish the division off during a three-game set with the last-place Mets… Maddux’s win gives him 13; with three starts probably left for Greg he’s got a reasonable shot at keeping his string of 15-win seasons intact. John Smoltz’s chance at the all-time saves record seems pretty meager at the moment, with the Braves simply not needing to pitch him even if they get save opportunities.