To learn about our efforts to improve the accessibility and usability of our website, please visit our Accessibility Information page. Skip to section navigation or Skip to main content
Below is an advertisement.

News

Skip to main content
Ortiz rolls on, sans glamour
Below is an advertisement.
Division Series
10/08/2002 02:00 am ET 
Ortiz rolls on, sans glamour
Right-hander effective in notching second NLDS win
By Thomas Harding / MLB.com

Russ Ortiz beat the Braves twice during the five-game NLDS. (John Amis/MLB.com)
ATLANTA -- Russ Ortiz knows there are many ways to win a baseball game. He has used all of them during the past month.

Ortiz went the less glamorous route on Monday night, pitching 5 1/3 innings of limited mistakes in lifting the Giants to a 3-1 victory over the Braves in the deciding fifth game of the National League Division Series at Turner Field.

Well-practiced at finding ways to win, Ortiz -- who won both his starts in this series and extended his win streak to eight starts -- will try to do more of the same in the National League Championship Series, which starts Wednesday against the Cardinals in St. Louis.

Back to WorldSeries.com

"That's the whole strategy -- throw it out there, hit my spots and not really worry about what they were going to do with the ball," said Ortiz, who became the first Giant since Hall-of-Famer Carl Hubbell in 1933 to win two games in the same postseason series.

"I just thought, don't let the big guys beat you and don't let any guys up in front of them on base so they could drive them in. We kept the big innings at bay."

  Russ Ortiz   /   P
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 210
Bats/Throws: R/R

More info:
Player page
Stats
Splits
atlantabraves.com

The Braves couldn't even master a little inning during the first three. Ortiz walked Gary Sheffield and Chipper Jones with two out in the first before working Andruw Jones into a fly ball. Otherwise, he was clean.

Ortiz forced grounders to escape jams in the fourth and fifth innings. The first was by Vinny Castilla, who finished the series at .389 and was the most consistently productive Atlanta starter, to third baseman David Bell with runners at first and second. The second was Ortiz's best pitch of the night.

A Bell error and walks to Julio Franco and Sheffield loaded the bases with two out, but Ortiz forced Jones into a grounder to perfectly positioned shortstop Rich Aurilia to end the inning, but not without a little drama.

"It took a funny hop at the end, but somehow it ended up in my glove," Aurilia said.

    Rich Aurilia   /   SS
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 189
Bats/Throws: R/R

More info:
Stats
Splits
Hit chart
Mariners site
Ortiz said he acknowledged the pressure of the situation, then consciously forced it from his mind.

"The whole time I was just telling myself don't press, just keep throwing your pitches and that's just what I did."

Ortiz credited Aurilia with making a great play.

"It took a bad hop. I kind of jumped and said, 'Oh, my goodness.'"

That's what's being said, with confidence and happiness instead of fear, about Ortiz.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.





More Coverage
Related Links
• Giants-Braves Game 5 highlights  56k | 300k
• Barry's blast  56k | 300k
• Aurilia's clutch play  56k | 300k
• Nen closes the game  56k | 300k
MLB Headlines