Cincinnati at Atlanta

W: J. Reyes (1-0) L: M. Belisle (1-2)
HR: CIN - None   ATL - None

Braves 9, Reds 1 wire reports

ATLANTA -- Now that John Smoltz is going to be a closer when healthy, the Braves will need to find another starter for the rest of the season.

They may have found one in Jo-Jo Reyes.

Reyes gave up one run in 5 1/3 innings in his 2008 debut, and Atlanta broke open a close game with a six-run seventh to beat the Cincinnati Reds 9-1 Saturday night.

Reyes (1-0), recalled from Triple-A Richmond, gave up four hits and one run in 5 1/3 innings. He walked three and struck out five.

"He's in John Smoltz's spot, so I say he's pretty important," Chipper Jones said. "The kid can pitch here. There's no doubt about it. He's got the stuff to pitch here. The only question is can he stay in the strike zone consistently."

Control problems hurt Reyes as a rookie last season, when he was 2-2 with a 6.22 ERA in 11 games, including 10 starts. He worked with pitching coach Roger McDowell on improving his footwork on the mound and maintaining more control in his delivery.

Reyes pitched around two fifth-inning walks and was ahead in the count more often against the Reds.

"He can be a big shot in the arm for us, with the news of Smoltzie," catcher Brian McCann said. "He's got the stuff to succeed at this level.

"I think he feels like he belongs. You know, when you first come up you don't know where you fit in. He comes up this time, his confidence is through the roof."

McDowell said Reyes was "very, very aggressive."

"When we broke camp there were guys who were here last year that were going to be in Richmond," McDowell said. "We've had some injuries, so the ability of those guys to come in and stick and fill a need was vital."

Reyes said he felt more comfortable after struggling to control his adrenaline last year.

"I've been here before, so I'm kind of getting used to it now," Reyes said.

Reliever Jeff Bennett, Will Ohman, Jorge Campillo, Blaine Boyer and Chris Resop finished with 3 2/3 perfect innings.

The Reds had only four hits despite manager Dusty Baker's attempt to shake up the lineup.

"It's the same players," Baker said. "We couldn't score runs to get the game close."

Ken Griffey Jr., hitting second for the first time since 2005, was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts.

Reds starter Matt Belisle (1-2) gave up eight hits and two runs in 5 1/3 innings.

The Braves led only 2-1 on a double by Jones in the first and Yunel Escobar's single in the fifth before sending 10 batters to the plate in the big seventh inning.

Mark Teixeira's bases-loaded walk off Jeremy Affeldt drove in the first run. McCann followed with a two-run double to left. Jeff Francoeur, Mark Kotsay and Matt Diaz also drove in runs in the inning.

The Braves, who matched their season high with 15 hits, added a run in the eighth when Kelly Johnson doubled and scored on Francisco Cordero's wild pitch.

Ryan Freel's speed helped give the Reds their only run. Freel led off the sixth with a single. Freel stole second on Ken Griffey Jr.'s strikeout and then stole third before scoring on Brandon Phillips' single to center. Phillips also stole second.

Reyes was lifted after walking Joey Votto. Ohman struck out Adam Dunn with runners on second and third to end the inning.


Smoltz, who is on the DL with a shoulder injury, was honored in the middle of the third inning for his 3000th career strikeout on April 23. General manager Frank Wren and Cox joined Smoltz, who received a video tribute and a standing ovation. ... Braves RHP Peter Moylan had to put an early end to a bullpen session before the game as he tested his strained right elbow. He will be examined by team doctors Sunday and could face season-ending surgery. ... Infielder Brent Lillibridge was optioned to Richmond to clear a roster spot for Reyes. ... Jones was 2-for-4 and is hitting .421.

Copyright 2017 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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Players of the Game

Y. Escobar
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 0

B. McCann
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0

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Cincinnati Reds
Ryan Freel, CF-LF4110001 .316
Ken Griffey Jr., RF4000030 .239
Brandon Phillips, 2B4011010 .274
Joey Votto, 1B3000110 .293
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B3000100 .280
Adam Dunn, LF3000013 .209
    Mike Lincoln, P0000000 .000
    Jeremy Affeldt, P0000000 .000
    Jared Burton, P0000000 .000
    Francisco Cordero, P0000000 .000
   a- Javier Valentin, PH1000000 .214
Jeff Keppinger, SS3020000 .300
David Ross, C2000101 .167
Matt Belisle, P1000012 .000
    Bill Bray, P0000000 .000
    Corey Patterson, CF1000000 .202
a-grounded out for Cordero in the 9th
SH - Matt Belisle (2)
RBI - Brandon Phillips (15)
SB - Ryan Freel 2 (3, 2nd base off Reyes/McCann, 3rd base off Reyes/McCann), Brandon Phillips (5, 2nd base off Reyes/McCann)
Team LOB - 5
Cincinnati Reds
Matt Belisle (L,1-2) 5.1822020 6.91
Bill Bray 0.1000010 0.00
Mike Lincoln 0.2122100 3.95
Jeremy Affeldt0233100 3.46
Jared Burton 0.2211000 4.15
Francisco Cordero 1211200 2.25
WP - Matt Belisle (1), Francisco Cordero (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Belisle 86-55, Bill Bray 3-3, Mike Lincoln 12-5, Jeremy Affeldt 12-5, Jared Burton 14-9, Francisco Cordero 26-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Belisle 6-8, Mike Lincoln 2-0, Jared Burton 1-1, Francisco Cordero 1-2
Batters Faced - Matt Belisle 24, Bill Bray 1, Mike Lincoln 4, Jeremy Affeldt 3, Jared Burton 4, Francisco Cordero 7
Atlanta Braves
Kelly Johnson, 2B4220000 .242
Yunel Escobar, SS4231101 .317
Chipper Jones, 3B4121102 .421
    Martin Prado, PR-3B0000000 .270
Mark Teixeira, 1B4121102 .274
Brian McCann, C4122101 .283
Jeff Francoeur, RF5121005 .280
Mark Kotsay, CF5011016 .283
Gregor Blanco, LF2000012 .317
   a- Matt Diaz, PH-LF1001001 .289
Jo-Jo Reyes, P2000010 .000
    Jeff Bennett, P0000000 .000
    Will Ohman, P0000000 .000
    Jorge Campillo, P0000000 .000
   b- Brayan Pena, PH2110001 .231
    Blaine Boyer, P0000000 .000
    Chris Resop, P0000000 .000
a-grounded out for Blanco in the 6th
b-singled for Campillo in the 7th
2B - Kelly Johnson 2 (4, Belisle, Cordero), Yunel Escobar (4, Belisle), Chipper Jones (5, Belisle), Brian McCann (8, Affeldt), Jeff Francoeur (11, Belisle), Mark Kotsay (5, Burton)
SF - Matt Diaz (1)
SH - Kelly Johnson (2)
RBI - Yunel Escobar (13), Chipper Jones (22), Mark Teixeira (18), Brian McCann 2 (16), Jeff Francoeur (20), Mark Kotsay (9), Matt Diaz (13)
Team LOB - 10
DP - Johnson-Jones-Teixeira
Atlanta Braves
Jo-Jo Reyes (W,1-0) 5.1411350 1.69
Jeff Bennett (H,2) 0.1000000 3.95
Will Ohman (H,4) 0.1000010 2.38
Jorge Campillo (H,3) 1000000 0.66
Blaine Boyer 1000010 5.09
Chris Resop 1000000 7.84
Pitches-Strikes - Jo-Jo Reyes 88-48, Jeff Bennett 4-2, Will Ohman 4-3, Jorge Campillo 14-10, Blaine Boyer 9-6, Chris Resop 19-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jo-Jo Reyes 7-3, Jeff Bennett 1-0, Jorge Campillo 1-2, Blaine Boyer 1-1, Chris Resop 3-0
Batters Faced - Jo-Jo Reyes 22, Jeff Bennett 1, Will Ohman 1, Jorge Campillo 3, Blaine Boyer 3, Chris Resop 3
Game Information
Attendance - 37969
Game Time - 2:58
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Chad Fairchild, Second Base - Rick Reed, Third Base - Jeff Kellogg