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Davies debuts by beating BoSox, ending Braves' skid

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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BOSTON -- Kyle Davies' family had a wonderful night in the pouring rain, watching the young right-hander shut down the Boston Red Sox in his major league debut.

The pitching-short Atlanta Braves enjoyed the view, too.

The 21-year-old Davies allowed four hits in five scoreless innings -- ending his evening by striking out slugger Manny Ramirez with runners at first and third -- and the Braves won 7-5 Saturday to end their longest losing streak in three years.

"I saw my dad before the game and he was drenched," Davies said. "I was excited. At the same time, I was going to try and have as much fun with it as I could."

With starters John Thomson and Mike Hampton on the disabled list, the Braves needed someone to fill the void and pitch well.

"With how things are going now around our team, it makes it a little bit more rewarding for a kid to step in and do a job like that," Atlanta general manager John Schuerholz said. "So I'm real happy for him and happy for us."

The Braves are so strapped for pitching -- Thomson is expected to miss at least two months -- that they plan to use Davies on three days' rest against the New York Mets.

"That's fine," said the poised rookie, who claimed the steady rain didn't bother him, "Go out there and attack it Wednesday."

The Decatur, Ga., native made a speedy climb through the system of the team he rooted for growing up, pitching just 20 games above Class A and only nine at Triple-A Richmond. But he was advised to approach Saturday's game the same way he pitched in the minors.

"Everybody told me coming up that it's the same game and if you make your pitches, you get these guys out, too," said Davies (1-0). "Being at Fenway was kind of a thrill, so as the game went on we scored a bunch of runs. I had a seven-run lead in the fifth inning so it's easy to pitch with a seven-run lead no matter where you're at."

Boston trailed 7-3 before scoring twice in the ninth on an RBI single by Ramirez and an RBI groundout by Trot Nixon. Jason Varitek ended the game by flying out with Ramirez at third. But Ramirez is batting just .229 after going 1-for-5.

"He really put a good swing on the ball" in the ninth, Boston manager Terry Francona said. "It's an indication he's getting hot."

Davies struck out six, walked three and left with a 7-0 lead before Boston scored against the Braves' bullpen.

"That's unbelievable," catcher Johnny Estrada said. "To pitch in Fenway Park and beat the world champs at 21, you can't say enough about him."

The start of the game was delayed for 30 minutes and a steady rain fell most of the night. The Red Sox made four errors -- two by shortstop Edgar Renteria.

"Renteria has been a clutch player everywhere he's been and he will be here, too," Varitek said.

Johnny Damon's leadoff single was Boston's only hit in the first two innings. The Sox had better luck against Davies the next three, but stranded two runners in each of those innings.

"The kid showed great composure," Damon said. "He's got good tempo and he wasn't afraid to throw any of his pitches."

One of Atlanta's best hitters, Andruw Jones, also struggled with four strikeouts. But the Braves ended a four-game losing streak, their first since April 13-16, 2002.

They went ahead 1-0 in the third against Tim Wakefield (4-3) on an RBI single by Chipper Jones. Raul Mondesi doubled in a run in the fourth and Atlanta added four in the fifth to take a 6-0 lead.

Marcus Giles led off with a double, took third on Chipper Jones' single and scored on a wild pitch. Adam LaRoche walked, putting runners at first and second. After Andruw Jones struck out, three consecutive batters drove in a run -- Estrada hit a single, Julio Franco a double and Brian Jordan added a sacrifice fly.

John Halama replaced Wakefield to start the sixth and was hurt by two errors that contributed to a run. Rafael Furcal reached first when Renteria fielded his grounder but threw late for the first error. Furcal took second on a wild pitch.

Giles then hit the ball toward third baseman Bill Mueller, who threw it into Boston's dugout for a hit and an error that allowed Furcal to score.

The Red Sox broke through against Jorge Sosa for two runs in the sixth on a single by Kevin Millar and a double-play grounder by Mueller. Ramirez drove in a run in the seventh on a foreceout grounder.

Notes

  • Renteria was ejected in the ninth by home plate umpire Andy Fletcher for arguing a called third strike.
  • Varitek made a rare appearance as Wakefield's catcher. Doug Mirabelli, who usually handles that job, went on the disabled list Friday with a sprained left wrist.
  • Davies is the first Atlanta starter to win his debut since David Nied in 1992 at the New York Mets.
  • Furcal reached base four times, three on errors.
 
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Kyle Davies strikes out six and allows four hits in five innings against Boston.  (AP)
Kyle Davies strikes out six and allows four hits in five innings against Boston. (AP)

Players of the Game
Atlanta

M. Giles
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
Atlanta

K. Davies
IP 5.0
H 4
ER 0
BB 3
K 6
 

Related Video

Atlanta Braves
Rafael Furcal, SS4100102 .211
Marcus Giles, 2B5230002 .284
Chipper Jones, 3B4121102 .339
    Wilson Betemit, 3B0000000 .323
Adam LaRoche, 1B4100113 .261
Andruw Jones, CF5000045 .283
Johnny Estrada, C5111010 .260
Julio Franco, DH3111110 .239
Brian Jordan, LF3011000 .235
Raul Mondesi, RF3011011 .200
    Ryan Langerhans, RF1000010 .188
Totals377954915 
Batting
2B - Marcus Giles 2 (16, Wakefield, Wakefield), Julio Franco (3, Wakefield), Raul Mondesi (7, Wakefield)
SF - Brian Jordan (2)
RBI - Chipper Jones (23), Johnny Estrada (21), Julio Franco (5), Brian Jordan (19), Raul Mondesi (17)
2-OUT RBI - Chipper Jones (10), Raul Mondesi (9)
SB - Rafael Furcal (11, 2nd base off Wakefield/Varitek)
CS - Rafael Furcal (4, 2nd base by Wakefield/Varitek)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Furcal-LaRoche
PB - Johnny Estrada (2)
Atlanta Braves
Kyle Davies (W,1-0) 5400360 0.00
Jorge Sosa 1221100 3.12
Roman Colon 1211000 6.75
Adam Bernero 1100000 2.55
Chris Reitsma 1222110 4.95
WP - Kyle Davies (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Kyle Davies 95-57, Jorge Sosa 25-17, Roman Colon 15-11, Adam Bernero 13-9, Chris Reitsma 14-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kyle Davies 3-6, Jorge Sosa 1-1, Roman Colon 2-1, Adam Bernero 3-0, Chris Reitsma 1-1
Batters Faced - Kyle Davies 22, Jorge Sosa 5, Roman Colon 5, Adam Bernero 4, Chris Reitsma 6
Boston Red Sox
Johnny Damon, CF4130100 .364
Edgar Renteria, SS5110025 .245
David Ortiz, DH4120113 .280
Manny Ramirez, LF5012023 .229
Trot Nixon, RF4101111 .319
Jason Varitek, C4110101 .333
Kevin Millar, 1B4021000 .243
    Kevin Youkilis, 1B0000000 .367
Bill Mueller, 3B3010102 .267
Mark Bellhorn, 2B4000012 .226
Totals3751145717 
Batting
2B - Edgar Renteria (7, Colon), Manny Ramirez (8, Reitsma)
RBI - Manny Ramirez 2 (36), Trot Nixon (26), Kevin Millar (22)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
E - Mark Bellhorn (4, Misplayed grounder), Bill Mueller (3, Wild throw), Edgar Renteria 2 (8, Misplayed grounder)
Boston Red Sox
Tim Wakefield (L,4-3) 5866450 4.24
John Halama 3110030 6.26
Matt Mantei 1000010 2.35
WP - Tim Wakefield (4), John Halama (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Wakefield 88-53, John Halama 45-29, Matt Mantei 14-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Wakefield 1-9, John Halama 7-1, Matt Mantei 1-1
Batters Faced - Tim Wakefield 27, John Halama 12, Matt Mantei 3
Game Information
Attendance - 35008
Game Time - 3:07
Temperature - 48
Umpires - Home - Andy Fletcher, First Base - Bob Davidson, Second Base - Rob Drake, Third Base - Mike Reilly