ATLANTA (Ticker) -- The
definitely did not want
to enjoy his 30th birthday.
had a two-run single to ignite a four-run first inning and
settled down after a shaky start as the Phillies defeated the
had a one-out single in the first before Ortiz issued consecutive walks to
. Ledee followed with a ground ball up the middle to plate Perez and Abreu for a 2-0 lead.
lined a single into right-center field and
delivered an RBI base hit to right, capping the inning.
"If you've got the opportunity, you have to take advantage of it," Ledee said. "With a pitcher like (Ortiz), you aren't going to get too many opportunities.
"They weren't trying to do much," said Ortiz. "After that, everything was fine, but it was too late."
The Braves cut the Phillies lead to 4-2 in the bottom of the first, but it could have been a lot worse.
started the inning with a single and stole second base. After DeWayne Wise moved Furcal to third and J.D. Drew walked,
, who is hitting a major league best .546 (24-for-44) with 31 RBI with runners in scoring position, singled to right to plate Furcal.
followed with an RBI double, pulling Atlanta within 4-2. Estrada tried to score from first base, but was gunned down at the plate on a perfect relay from Utley.
"I just ran," Estrada said. "I got a good jump from first base, but I'm not the fastest guy."
"That was an easy play," Pratt said. "It was really a textbook play at the plate. It was a great relay throw. That was like slow motion for me."
Myers (4-3) settled down and induced
to ground out to end the threat.
"When Andruw came up in the first, I tried to locate my fastball to him," Myers said. "I told Pratt that I have to relax and locate my pitches."
Myers found a groove after the first and allowed two runs and six hits in seven innings. He walked four, struck out five and departed after throwing 115 pitches. "I learned a lot about myself the first three starts," Myers said. "I found my rhythm. I was probably pitching too much than going after them."
gave up one run and two hits in the eighth inning before
struck out the side in the ninth for his eighth save in 10 chances.
Ortiz (6-5) was reached for five runs and nine hits in six innings. Pitching for the first time on his birthday, the righthander walked three and struck out eight as he had a personal three-game winning streak stopped.
"I have friends and family here, so whatever happened, it was a good day," Ortiz said. "When the other team puts up four runs or a number like that, it's hard to play catchup."
With the loss, the Braves (27-28) fell below .500. It is the latest in the season that they have been below the .500 mark since June 6, 1992.