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Game balls: Rating Game 110/06/2004 7:41 PM ET
By Ken Mandel / MLB.com
MLB.com is awarding "game balls" -- or, in this case, cowboy boots -- as the boys from Houston so often wear -- and peaches -- in honor of Georgia's favorite fruit -- for performances in this year's National League Division Series. Here's a look at the Astros' 9-3 win in Game 1. Five cowboy boots: Freshly shined and a perfect fit, ready for some serious two-stepping
Four cowboy boots: The first choice for a night on the town
Three cowboy boots: A few scuff marks, but no one will notice
Two cowboy boots: Showing serious signs of wear
One cowboy boot: Somebody stepped in something
Roger Clemens: Recovering from a stomach virus that kept him out of Sunday's regular-season finale, The Rocket had plenty of fuel stored. Taking the first step toward bringing a World Series championship to his home state, Clemens tossed 117 pitches in seven innings and overcame six walks. For his career, the 42-year-old had never won a Game 1 start in any series entering the start. Think Yankees owner George Steinbrenner was watching?
Four peaches: A tasty cobbler
Three peaches: Juicy and refreshing
Two peaches: Mom packed this instead of a candy bar?
One peach: The last piece of fruit from the bottom of the bin
Marcus Giles: Reaching on an error in the first inning, Giles took advantage by stealing second, then advancing to third on a passed ball. The early run he scored was symbolic, showing Clemens that the Braves could take advantage of an opportunity.
Chipper Jones: The Braves veteran meekly went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts and stranded three runners. If he can't do better than that, Atlanta won't be around much longer.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.