Braves outlast Phillies in 11 innings

PHILADELPHIA -- After being dominated by Roy Halladay for nine innings on Monday night, the Braves were going to stay out all Tuesday night for some other result.

They lost a one-run lead in the seventh inning and spoiled a great scoring chance in the eighth inning, but the Braves kept coming back with the help of stingy relief pitching and hitters who were due.

Matt Diaz doubled on a hit-and-run to drive in the winning run and start a three-run barrage in the 11th inning for a 6-3 win in only his second game back in the lineup from the disabled list. He had three hits, as many as the Phillies did as a team.

“My swing feels great,” said Diaz, who missed six weeks following thumb surgery. “It’s great to swing and not have in the back of your mind if I get jammed my thumb is going to blow up, bleed and puss.”

Diaz capped another good night by Jair Jurrjens, who allowed only two hits and three runs in six innings in his second game back from the disabled list.

“Matte showed up at a good time,” Chipper Jones said. “Right when we needed him. Couple of big knocks against (Cole) Hamels and then the hit-and-run was perfection. Couldn’t have come at a better time.”

Eric Hinske followed with a towering two-run home run to snap an 0-for-13 stretch with his sixth home run of the year. Yunel Escobar had led off the 11th with a single, redeeming himself for a ground-out on the infield that helped thwart the eighth inning chance.

Billy Wagner came on to collect his 18th save and complete good work Peter Moylan and Jonny Venters started from the bullpen when they stranded Ryan Howard at third base in the seventh to hold the game at 3-3.

The Braves were down to Kenshin Kawakami and the four other starters but pulled off their 16th final at-bat victory to take the majors’ lead over the Cincinnati Reds.

They evened the series 1-1 to take momentum back heading into the deciding game of this series Wednesday. The Braves held their lead at two games over the Mets and moved back to five games ahead of the Phillies in the NL East.

“All you heard last night, watching the news or listening to the radio, was the fact that Doc (Halladay) shut us down, this was possibly going to be the series that turns momentum around,” Jones said. “We came out tonight and they’re right as many games back as they were before yesterday. That’s the way this games works.”

The Phillies lost for the seventh time in Hamels’ past eight starts, while the Braves won for the second time in two starts back for Jurrjens.

Jurrjens gave up only two hits in the game – one in the first inning on a Raul Ibanez two-run homer and one in the seventh on a Ryan Howard triple -- but he retired 14-of-15 in the innings in between. He recovered from a 28-pitch first inning to tally only 28 pitches over the next three innings.

He came out after 89 pitches in the seventh but only after Howard took him deep off the left field wall on a ball that bounced off the top of the fence and off of Diaz’s glove.

“I was trying to overpower everybody and they’re a better hitting team than Washington,” Jurrjens said of the first inning, when Ibanez turned on his 94 mph fastball, the same pitch he used to dominate the first inning last week against the Nationals. “Then I said I need to go back to pitching and hitting my spots, throwing more two-seamers and make the guys hit the ball on the ground.”

After the Braves’ bullpen held Howard at third base, the Braves blew a great scoring opportunity of their own in the top of the eighth inning when they had runners first and third with nobody out.

Jones took off from third on the contact of a Escobar’s grounder to third base, then got caught in a rundown trying to prevent the double play. Pinch runner Brandon Hicks got only as far second base, and the Braves stranded him there.