Glavine earns 21st win
Atlanta What was supposed to be a tuneup for the postseason also turned out to be a huge game for Tom Glavine and Atlanta.
Glavine pitched five scoreless innings in getting ready for next week's playoffs to gain his 21st win and the Braves beat Colorado, 5-2, Saturday night.
The Braves can clinch the home-field advantage for Tuesday's opener of the best-of-5 playoffs against Central Division champion St. Louis by winning today or if the Cardinals lose.
Glavine (21-9), who will start Game 2 against the Cardinals, allowed four hits, walked one, struck out three and ended Atlanta's three-game losing streak.
"If you're going to go out there, you might as well pitch to win," said Glavine. "As much as it was a so-called tuneup, you still want to win the game and stay sharp."
Glavine, who pitched a shutout in his last start, a 6-0 win over Montreal, extended his scoreless string to 14 innings and lowered his ERA to 3.40 in his bid for a third Cy Young with his 21 wins.
"It just means I've had a good year," he said. "In a lot of ways it was a big game for us, trying to get the home-field advantage. That was more on my mind than anything else."
Colorado manager Buddy Bell had only admiration for Glavine.
"It was typical. He was no different than he usually is. He throws strikes. He's a great, great pitcher. Our bats were not long enough," he said.
John Rocker pitched the ninth, earning his 24th save in 26 chances.
"We got Tommy No. 21 and we got to go up one game on St. Louis," said Atlanta manager Bobby Cox. "So, it was a good night."
The Braves (95-66) have a 51-29 record at home and are 44-37 on the road this season.
Reds 8, Cardinals 4
St. Louis Pat Hentgen became the latest St. Louis starter to get hit hard before the playoffs as Osvaldo Fernandez pitched Cincinnati past the Cardinals. The Central champion Cardinals and East champion Atlanta will start their best-of-5 series Tuesday.
Dodgers 10, Padres 2
San Diego Todd Hundley hit a grand slam to lead Los Angeles over San Diego. Hundley's first-inning blast was Los Angeles' ninth grand slam of the season.
Marlins 11, Phillies 5
Miami Cliff Floyd had four hits and a career-high six RBIs, including his first career grand slam, and Reid Cornelius won his first game in nearly three months as Florida beat Philadelphia.
D-backs 5, Giants 1
Phoenix Matt Mieske broke a 1-1 tie with a leadoff homer in the eighth inning, and Arizona stopped San Francisco from clinching home-field advantage throughout the NL playoffs.
Mets 4, Expos 2
New York Jorge Toca hit a three-run double in the eighth inning to lead the New York over Montreal. Toca, a late-season callup, hit a drive off Javier Vazquez into the gap in left-center field to lead the Mets to their fourth straight victory.
Astros 7, Brewers 6
Houston Keith Ginter hit his first major league homer and Jeff Bagwell and Lance Berkman hit consecutive home runs.
Pirates 4, Cubs 2
Pittsburgh Kevin Young returned from a suspension and hit a two-run homer as Pittsburgh beat Chicago.