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Anderson, Francoeur lead Braves in rout

POSTED: October 1, 2008 5:01 a.m.

HOUSTON — Josh Anderson hit two home runs and Jeff Francoeur drove in three runs with a pair of doubles to help the Atlanta Braves beat the Houston Astros 11-5 on Saturday night.

The Braves jumped to a 9-0 lead after their first two at-bats and finished with 18 hits, tying the most allowed by the Astros this season.

Brandon Backe (9-14) went 1 1-3 innings, the shortest outing of his career, and allowed eight runs and eight hits, including two home runs, both by Anderson. He leads the major leagues with 36 homers allowed.

James Parr made his fifth start of the season since being called up from Triple-A Richmond on Sept. 2. He left with a 9-5 lead but didn't get the win because he went only 4 1-3 innings. He allowed five runs — four earned — and eight hits.

Reliever Vladimir Nunez (1-2) pitched 1 2-3 perfect innings, striking out one, to take the win.

Anderson led off with a home run on the second pitch of the game. It was his second homer of the season. Brandon Jones added a two-run double to give the Braves a 3-0 lead in the first.

Anderson added a two-run homer in the second inning to make it 5-0.

Backe was pulled three batters later after he walked Casey Kotchman to load the bases. Francoeur's double off reliever Jack Cassel scored three more and Jones followed with an RBI single for a 9-0 lead.

Hunter Pence hit his 25th home run of the season in the second inning for Houston. Lance Berkman drove in his 106th run of the season in the third.

Chipper Jones flied out in the ninth as a pinch-hitter, lowering his major league-leading average to .364. Jones, who has been out of the starting lineup due to right shoulder inflammation since Sept. 21, leads St. Louis' Albert Pujols (.356) by eight points for the NL batting title.

<B>Notes:<P> It was Anderson's second career leadoff homer. The first was Sept. 2, at Florida. ... Jorge Julio pitched a scoreless inning for his 11th consecutive appearance in which he hasn't allowed a run. ... Jones fell a point behind Mickey Mantle for the highest single-season batting average by a switch hitter. Mantle hit .365 in 1957. ... Over his last two starts, Backe pitched a total of three innings and allowed 13 runs and 14 hits. ... Miguel Tejada increased his National League record for hitting into double plays with his 32nd in the third inning. He set the record Friday. ... Berkman's third-inning hit gave him 1,449 for his career, moving him past Bob Watson for fifth on the Astros' career list. ... Berkman increased his career high for stolen bases to 18 in the seventh inning. ... With a major-league low 66 errors entering the final game, the Astros will top club record of 76 set in 1994.



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