Smoltz, Reitsma combine on five-hitter as Braves best Reds
CINCINNATI (Ticker) --
continued to roll against a team that rarely has been able to slow him down.
Smoltz allowed two solo homers and two other hits in eight innings and
homered as the
posted a 5-2 triumph over the
Smoltz (6-5) won for the fourth time in five starts by taking advantage of one of his favorite opponents. The 38-year-old righthander did not walk a batter and struck out nine in improving to 18-11 lifetime vs. the Reds.
The nine strikeouts moved Smoltz within four of
(2,478) for 28th place all-time. Smoltz's 18 wins against Cincinnati are his most against any team.
The 38-year-old has not walked a batter in 25 1/3 innings - a span of three starts.
"Smoltz was sharp and we got him some runs," Atlanta manager
said. "He's not had much run support this season. He should have a few more wins."
"My greatest asset is being a leader," Smoltz said. "I know I don't play every day but I talked about it in spring training. I want to be the guy who goes out there and the guys know we have a chance to win."
, who was traded from Cincinnati last spring, allowed the first two batters in the ninth to reach but struck out
Wily Mo Pena
on groundouts to notch his fifth save in seven opportunities.
"It feels good to save games," said Reitsma, who was shifted between the rotation and the bullpen while with Cincinnati. "I'm always grateful to the Reds. They brought me to the big leagues but I love it here. They used me in 84 games last year. It was a learning experience."
Furcal opened the game with his fifth homer of the season and Giles added a solo shot four innings later against Cincinnati starter
"It's a good sign to score two in the first inning," Giles said. "It's been awhile since we jumped out before the other guys did. We did in Texas the other day and won. Tonight we got good pitching and timely hitting. We can talk about our injuries but the team we put out there, we still expect to win."
Claussen surrendered three runs and nine hits in 5 2/3 innings.
"I had to battle," Claussen said. "I didn't have one easy inning. I don't think there was one inning where the leadoff guy didn't get on. I felt like I did a good job. I kept the team in the game and made good pitches. It was damage control."
had his ninth homer and Dunn his 17th to account for the Cincinnati offense. The Reds have scored just six runs during their current four-game losing streak.
"We've run into guys who've been throwing the ball well," Dunn said. "The last four days, when we've been struggling offensively, each of those guys have been on their games."
"Basically, that's how it's been the last four games," Cincinnati manager Dave Miley said. "We've faced some pretty good pitching. It's tough."
Atlanta, which won for just the fifth time in 14 games, improved to 8-15 in series openers this season.