PHOENIX (AP) – Andruw Jones led off the ninth inning with his 30th home run Saturday night to give the Atlanta Braves a 3-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Jones’ shot to left on an 0-2 pitch from Jose Valverde (1-4) kept the Braves tied with Washington atop the NL East.

Chris Reitsma (2-2) pitched the final 1 2-3 innings without allowing a run to get the victory.

Arizona starter Brad Halsey held the Braves without a hit through 5 2-3 innings and nursed a 1-0 lead into the seventh, when Julio Franco and Jeff Francoeur each doubled in a run to put Atlanta up 2-1.

The Diamondbacks tied it in the eighth. Quinton McCracken, who had an RBI single in the sixth, drew a one-out walk from reliever Dan Kolb, then scored when pinch-hitter Tony Clark doubled.

Halsey allowed two runs and four hits, walked one, hit a batter and struck out one in 7 2-3 innings. The left-hander, acquired from the Yankees in the Randy Johnson trade, didn’t give up a hit until Rafael Furcal slapped a single up the middle with two outs in the sixth.

The Diamondbacks couldn’t give Halsey any help against Jorge Sosa, who got the start after Mike Hampton aggravated his strained lower back getting out of a hot tub on Tuesday. Sosa allowed three hits, struck out five and walked four in five scoreless innings.

Atlanta reliever John Foster walked Shawn Green to start the sixth. Green stole second, then advanced to third on Chad Tracy’s groundout. McCracken followed with a first-pitch single up the middle and Arizona led 1-0.

The lead didn’t last long. Jones was hit by a pitch, then scored from first on Franco’s double to tie it at 1. With two outs, Francoeur doubled home Franco to make it 2-1.

Arizona had runners on base in each of the first five innings, and in scoring position in all but one of them, yet failed to score.

Notes: Chipper Jones was a last-minute scratch from Atlanta’s lineup after experiencing soreness in his left foot during batting practice. He grounded out as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. … McCracken is 7-for-14 on the homestand with four RBIs. … With his no-decision, Sosa remained 5-0 on the road this season, second only to Chris Carpenter’s 7-0 mark for St. Louis. … Despite their third loss in four games, the Diamondbacks remained 31/2 games behind NL West leader San Diego. … Halsey reached base on a hit and a walk, and was robbed by Furcal’s spectacular catch at shortstop in the sixth.

AP-ES-07-24-05 0051EDT


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