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San Francisco at Atlanta

Scoreboard
San Francisco (50-43)000010000180
Atlanta (48-46) «10340000x8120

Braves 8, Giants 1

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- Martin Prado may be able to push aside the gloves he uses at first base and third base.

The former utility player is putting a lock on his new job as the Atlanta Braves' starting second baseman.

Prado and the Braves continued their hot July, beating the San Francisco Giants 8-1 on Tuesday night to move two games over .500 for the first time in almost two months.

Prado had three hits and scored three runs, Brian McCann hit a three-run homer and drove in four runs and the Braves (48-46) continued their offensive surge.

The Braves have averaged 7.2 runs in a 5-1 start to their eight-game homestand and are 9-3 in their last 12 games overall.

"We ran into a hot team," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "They played well. They pitch and swing the bats."

Prado is hitting .377 in July as the team's No. 2 hitter. The former No. 2 hitter, shortstop Yunel Escobar, has also flourished in the new lineup, hitting .413 in July. Escobar hit sixth Tuesday night.

"Prado, getting him in that No. 2 hole and dropping Escobar down where he can get some RBI ... has made a world of difference," Braves manager Bobby Cox said.

Prado made 13 or more starts at first base, second base and third base in his utility role before taking the starting job at second. Kelly Johnson, who started 57 games at second in the first half of the season, was hitting .214 when he went on the disabled list with tendinitis in his right wrist on July 3.

Escobar leads the team with 53 RBI.

The Giants, who fell out of the NL wild-card lead with Monday night's 11-3 loss to the Braves, have lost five of six.

"We're not happy with these last two games," Bochy said. "We got blown out in both of them. Big innings are killing us."

The Braves' .296 batting average for July entering the game led the majors. Their 12 hits boosted the mark to .300.

Prado began the night tied for the major league lead with 26 hits in July. He had a career-best 10-game hitting streak end Monday night and was the NL player of the week for the week ending July 5. He is hitting .324 for the season.

Prado and Escobar combined for a flashy double play in the first inning on Travis Ishikawa's grounder to Prado. Escobar made an acrobatic throw to first after catching Prado's toss.

"Our defense has been unbelievable," McCann said. "Our middle infielders, it seems like every night they're making a highlight play. It's rubbing off on everybody else."

Prado said Escobar always asks to practice unusual double plays.

"When we take ground balls, Escobar is the only one that wants to practice those kinds of plays," Prado said. "They happen once in a while. We made that play, he said, 'You see? I told you.' We've got a great friendship. I think he's a great player. He motivated me and the guys. He makes us play hard every day."

Prado singled and scored on McCann's double in the first, and added another single in the three-run third. Chipper Jones had a run-scoring double, Garret Anderson had a sacrifice fly and Escobar added an RBI single in the inning.

The Braves added four runs off Ryan Sadowski (2-2) in the fourth. Prado drove in Ryan Church with a single. McCann's three-run homer over the 400-foot sign in center gave Atlanta an 8-0 lead.

Derek Lowe (9-7) allowed seven hits and one run in six innings as the Braves improved to 12-6 in July. Atlanta was last two games over .500 on May 25.

The Giants scored in the fifth when Juan Uribe's single drove in Matt Downs, who led off with a double.

Sadowski, the rookie right-hander recalled from Class A San Jose before the game, gave up eight runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings.

"My command was bad and my stuff was bad," Sadowski said, adding he didn't blame the poor outing on his long wait since his last major league start on July 8.

"We just ran into a hot offense," Sadowski said. "If you don't make the pitches, they make you pay."

Braves center fielder Nate McLouth left the game after the sixth inning with a mild lower back strain. Cox said he thinks McLouth will play on Wednesday night.

Bochy said shortstop Edgar Renteria will rest a sore elbow for "a couple days."

Notes

Giants IF Rich Aurilia was placed on the 15-day DL with a right big toe infection. The Giants optioned IF Kevin Frandsen to Triple-A Fresno and recalled Downs, who started at second base. ... Giants CF Aaron Rowand (bruised right forearm) did not play. He was hit on the arm by pitch on Monday. ... Casey Kotchman's infield single in the fifth extended his career-best hitting streak to 13 games.

 
Copyright 2014 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
Atlanta

B. McCann
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 4
Atlanta

D. Lowe
IP 6.0
H 7
ER 1
BB 1
K 4
 
San Francisco Giants
Randy Winn, CF3020100 .279
    Brandon Medders, P0000000 .000
John Bowker, RF4010023 .200
Pablo Sandoval, 3B4010014 .326
Travis Ishikawa, 1B4010002 .262
Fred Lewis, LF4000012 .244
Edgar Renteria, SS2000001 .254
    Justin Miller, P0000000 .000
   a- Nate Schierholtz, PH1010000 .291
    Merkin Valdez, P0000000 .000
    Andres Torres, CF1000000 .239
Matt Downs, 2B4110011 .200
Eli Whiteside, C4000011 .231
Ryan Sadowski, P1000010 .125
    Juan Uribe, SS2011000 .294
Totals3418117  
a-singled for Miller in the 6th
Batting
2B - Matt Downs (2, Lowe)
RBI - Juan Uribe (21)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Downs-Ishikawa
San Francisco Giants
Ryan Sadowski (L,2-2) 3.2888321 4.15
Justin Miller 1.1200120 2.28
Merkin Valdez 2200100 4.50
Brandon Medders 1000020 2.54
IBB - McCann by Ryan Sadowski
Pitches-Strikes - Ryan Sadowski 75-42, Justin Miller 32-21, Merkin Valdez 34-18, Brandon Medders 9-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ryan Sadowski 5-4, Merkin Valdez 4-1, Brandon Medders 1-0
Batters Faced - Ryan Sadowski 22, Justin Miller 7, Merkin Valdez 8, Brandon Medders 3
Atlanta Braves
Nate McLouth, CF4010012 .257
    Peter Moylan, P0000000 .000
   a- Greg Norton, PH1000000 .111
    Eric O'Flaherty, P0000000 .000
    Manny Acosta, P0000000 .000
Martin Prado, 2B5331023 .324
Chipper Jones, 3B4211101 .291
Brian McCann, C3124210 .305
Garret Anderson, LF3001022 .286
Yunel Escobar, SS4021000 .309
Casey Kotchman, 1B4010004 .281
Ryan Church, RF-CF3110101 .280
Derek Lowe, P1110100 .194
    Matt Diaz, RF1000001 .304
Totals33812856  
a-flied out for Moylan in the 7th
Batting
2B - Chipper Jones (17, Sadowski), Brian McCann (21, Sadowski)
HR - Brian McCann (10, Sadowski)
SF - Garret Anderson (6)
SH - Derek Lowe (7)
RBI - Martin Prado (21), Chipper Jones (47), Brian McCann 4 (46), Garret Anderson (36), Yunel Escobar (53)
2-OUT RBI - Martin Prado (10), Brian McCann 4 (28), Yunel Escobar (24)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Prado-Escobar-Kotchman
Atlanta Braves
Derek Lowe (W,9-7) 6711140 4.26
Peter Moylan 1000010 4.28
Eric O'Flaherty 1100010 3.21
Manny Acosta 1000010 4.15
Pitches-Strikes - Derek Lowe 92-64, Peter Moylan 17-9, Eric O'Flaherty 14-11, Manny Acosta 15-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Derek Lowe 10-3, Eric O'Flaherty 2-0, Manny Acosta 2-0
Batters Faced - Derek Lowe 25, Peter Moylan 3, Eric O'Flaherty 4, Manny Acosta 3
Game Information
Attendance - 25135
Game Time - 2:41
Temperature - 84
Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Tim Timmons, Second Base - Jeff Kellogg, Third Base - Rob Drake