Franco's two homers lift Braves past Reds
CINCINNATI (Ticker) -- The
were facing the perfect pitcher to continue their home run barrage.
hit two home runs and
hit his National League-leading 19th blast as the Braves posted a 6-1 victory over the
Atlanta hit seven homers in winning the first two games of the series, including a season-high five Friday.
The power surge continued against Cincinnati starter
(3-9), who leads the National League in losses, earned runs (71) and home runs (25).
Franco gave the Braves the early lead with a solo homer in the first and added a two-run shot in the third against Milton to make it 3-1. It was the 46-year-old Franco's first multiple-home run game since September 12, 1996.
Despite fighting the flu, Franco is 7-for-13 with three homers, six RBI and two stolen bases in the series.
"Being sick is bad, especially on the road," Franco said. "I can't eat well. I can't sleep, but I'm seeing the ball better and happy to help the team."
"Julio, again he strikes," Braves manager
said. "What's he going to do next? He stole two bases the other night. I'm amazed at what he can do with the bat at his age."
Reds manager Dave Miley, who is three years younger than Franco, was also amazed with the Braves' first baseman.
"After the first home run, or maybe it was the second, I was thinking that he's kind of like a position player you could compare to
," Miley said. "I don't know if remarkable is the right word, but he's impressive."
Milton, who allowed four runs and nine hits in six innings, also yielded a solo shot to Jones in the fifth that pushed the lead to 4-1.
"I made some mistakes," Milton said. "The outcomes haven't been good, but I try to take some positives out of them. It's tough. It's been a struggle and it continues."
"He was better," said Miley, whose team stranded 13 runners. "He made three pitches in the game that cost him home runs, but if we plate a couple of runs, things might've been different."
capped the scoring with a two-run homer against reliever
for the Braves, who clinched their first series win since sweeping the
New York Mets
from May 23-25.
allowed just one run and four hits in 4 1/3 innings and
(4-1) recorded the next five outs to pick up the victory.
Sosa yielded two runs in five innings in his last outing at Texas.
"Sosa did a great job, super job," Cox said. "He's started in the best home run hitters park in both his starts. He could have gone another inning but not being a starter there was no sense pushing it. He just threw strikes."
With three members of his rotation on the disabled list, Cox said that Sosa would get at least one more start.
"He's all we've got right now," Cox said.
had three hits and an RBI for the Reds, who have lost six straight games.