Johnson looks for second consecutive win in Game 5
Updated: Sunday October 21, 2001 1:24 AM
ATLANTA (AP) -- If Randy Johnson's last outing against Atlanta is any indication, the Big Unit won't be doing much tinkering when he faces the Braves on Sunday in Game 5 of the NL Championship Series.
Johnson is coming off a career-best postseason performance, a three-hitter in which he struck out 11 in a 2-0 win. He also ended a seven-game losing streak in the playoffs.
Does the 6-foot-10 left-hander need to make any adjustments in facing a team for the second time in less than a week?
"Well, if I knew I was going to pitch like I did in Arizona, I wouldn't make any," Johnson said Saturday night in the best-of-seven series, which Arizona leads 3-1 after beating Atlanta and Greg Maddux 11-4.
"I probably won't make any until they've made some," he said. "But you can go out there -- I could throw the exact same pitches that I did the first night, and if I don't execute them and hit the locations that I need to hit, then that might be the difference in the ball game."
Johnson will be opposed by Game 2 winner Tom Glavine.
The matchup between two of baseball's most dominant pitchers doesn't faze Glavine, a two-time NL Cy Young winner.
"It's probably extra incentive because of the situation we're going to be in," he said. "It's going to be a big game one way or another."
Glavine, who allowed six hits and one run in seven innings in Atlanta's 8-1 Game 2 win, will be going on three days' rest.
"It's no big deal," said Braves manager Bobby Cox, who decided to go with the three-man rotation of Greg Maddux, Glavine and John Burkett, leaving out No. 4 starter Kevin Millwood.
Cox said he had given some thought to using Millwood in Game 5.
He said Millwood still could be used later in the series as a starter or out of the bullpen. The right-hander pitched a scoreless inning of relief in Friday night's 5-1 loss.
Millwood, who was left off the division series roster when Cox decided to go with 10 pitchers, said he was not disappointed with the decision. Millwood (7-7) finished strong after spending 2 1/2 months on the disabled list with a sore right shoulder earlier in the season.
"We've got three pitchers who pitched great all year," he said. "It's hard not to use those guys. There's really not a whole lot to be disappointed about."
FOX delays Game 4 start
The FOX network decided to push back Saturday night's game 15 minutes to an 8:05 p.m. EDT start. No reason was given, but it was done likely so as not to interfere with the network's other game between the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees. That game began at 4:20 p.m. EDT.
Chipper apologizes to mediaChipper Jones, who has been battling the flu, apologized Saturday for not talking to the media following the Braves' 5-1 loss Friday night.
He was hit with the flu on Thursday, an off-day.
"Yesterday I was still kind of out of it, but today I feel all right," said Jones, who said he left the clubhouse rather quickly after the Game 3 loss.
"I bolted. I felt like garbage. I just wanted to get out of here. I know everybody wanted to talk, but I felt like it was midnight and I wanted to go home and go to bed," he said.
The media was eager to ask Jones about his throw home with the bases loaded that catcher Javy Lopez failed to catch for an error in the fifth, allowing two runs to score.
'I probably could have given him a better throw if I had set myself," Jones said of the off-balance throw.
Brenly feeling better
Arizona manager Bob Brenly, who also had the flu earlier in the week, said he was feeling much better Saturday.
"Curt Schilling gave me some good medicine last night," he said, referring to the right-hander's four-hit, 12-strikeout performance in the Diamondbacks' 5-1 win.
Not enough Maddux for Braves
Braves manager Bobby Cox thought he would get more than three innings out of Greg Maddux.
"He was going to throw six or seven shutout innings with the stuff he went out there with," Cox said. "He's not going to pitch any better. The jam shots fell in tonight. The serves to the opposite field fell in," he said. "We fell apart behind him."
Down 3-1, Cox was asked what would he tell the Braves now that they have to win three in a row to make it to the World Series.
"I don't think they have to be told," he said.
Around the horn
With their win Saturday night, the
Diamondbacks have won five in a row at Turner Field in 2001.
Arizona swept a three-game series in Atlanta on Aug. 10-12 en route to
winning the regular-season series 5-2. In going 5-0 here, the
Diamondbacks have outscored the Braves 35-7. Before this season,
Arizona was 3-9 at Turner Field.