Jones Homers in Braves First Win
HOUSTON (AP) – Chipper Jones was worried his timing would be off after missing time with a knee injury.
The Atlanta Braves’ star third baseman quickly realized there was no need for concern.
Jones came off the disabled list and began his final season in the majors with a single and a two-run homer to help the Braves get their first win of the season, 6-4 over the Houston Astros on Tuesday night.
“I think today he won our game singlehandedly, really,” Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez said.
The nearly 40-year-old Jones didn’t look a bit rusty in his return after missing Atlanta’s first four games following surgery on March 26 to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. The switch-hitter, who plans to retire at the end of this season, singled in his first at-bat and hit a left-handed homer – the 455th of his career – in the third inning to put the Braves up 3-1.
Jones brushed off the notion that he was the boost that finally got the Braves in the win column.
“I’m not going to say I was the spark,” he said. “Obviously, the two-run homer was a big lift, but I’d much rather be a calming influence, have them look down there, see me and know that I’m going to put up some good at-bats and hopefully make the play when it’s hit to me. And if they feed off that, great.”