|Atlanta (16-15) «||0||0||2||2||0||4||0||0||x||8||12||0|
ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Braves finally climbed over .500
They'd like to stay there a while.
Tommy Hanson pitched three-hit ball over six innings, Martin Prado drove in three runs and the Braves broke it open with a big sixth, defeating the Milwaukee Brewers 8-3 in the opening game of a doubleheader Wednesday.
"I don't even know how long it's been," Hanson said. "It's good to get over .500. Now, we've got to keep pushing."
|More on Brewers at Braves|
One day after rain wiped out the second game of the series, the teams played two in unseasonably cool conditions for early May in Atlanta. The temperature was expected to dip into the 40s for the nightcap.
Hanson (4-3) shook off a sore back to stymie Milwaukee for his third straight win. His only big stumble came in the fourth when Prince Fielder homered. Otherwise, the big right-hander made it look easy, sending the disappointing Brewers to their fourth straight defeat.
"I made a stupid pitch to Fielder and he hit it a long way," Hanson said. "For the most part, though, I didn't feel like I made too many mistakes. Once I got ahead, I just tried to stay aggressive."
Marco Estrada (1-1) took the loss for Milwaukee, which hoped to get a boost from Zack Greinke's first start in Game 2. The 2009 Cy Young winner was acquired from Kansas City in the offseason but has been on the disabled list for the first month with a broken rib.
Already leading 4-2, the Braves knocked out Estrada in a four-run sixth. They loaded the bases with one out, even without getting a ball to the outfield. Nate McLouth and Prado both reached on infield hits, sandwiched around a walk to pinch-hitter Brooks Conrad.
Mitch Stetter came on face Jason Heyward, but the first pitch sailed wildly to the backstop, allowing McLouth to trot home. Jones followed with a two-run single to right and McCann tacked on a sacrifice fly.
Prado had three hits and scored twice. McLouth had a big day, too, out of the eighth spot with three hits and a walk. One of his hits was initially charged as an error, then changed after the game by the official scorer.
"When you're at the bottom of the order, you've got to turn the lineup over ahead of the pitcher," McLouth said. "That's my job down there."
The Milwaukee defense stumbled in the third, when the Braves erased a 1-0 deficit with two runs.
After McLouth led off with a double down the right-field line, Hanson squared around for a routine sacrifice bunt. Only one problem for the Brewers: no one covered first. Fielder charged in from first and Weeks broke to second, handing Hanson a gift single and Atlanta an extra out. Prado singled to right to bring home McLouth, and McCann put Atlanta ahead with a two-out single that shouldn't have happened.
Freddie Freeman and Alex Gonzalez led off the Atlanta fourth with singles and McLouth was in the middle of things again, walking to load the bases with no outs. Hanson struck out looking, but Prado blooped a two-run single to center.
"We messed up that play," manager Ron Roenicke said. "It's just trying to get signs straight and paying attention to the signs, really, and making sure everybody's in the right place."
The Brewers jumped ahead in the second. Casey McGehee walked with one out, Mark Kotsay singled to left and Counsell came through with a two-out single. Fielder led off the fourth with his seventh homer, driving a 1-2 pitch into the right seats to briefly tie the game at 2.
Estrada gave up seven runs in 5 1/3 innings. He allowed eight hits, walked three and struck out five.
"We didn't play a good game," Roenicke said. "We can't keep doing that."
|Martin Prado drives in three runs to help the Braves move above .500 (16-15) for the first time since April 5. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Rickie Weeks, 2B||3||1||1||0||1||1||0||.301|
|Nyjer Morgan, CF-RF||4||0||0||1||0||1||1||.385|
|Ryan Braun, LF||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||.339|
|Prince Fielder, 1B||4||1||1||1||0||1||0||.315|
|Casey McGehee, 3B||3||1||1||0||1||1||0||.259|
|Mark Kotsay, RF||2||0||1||0||0||0||0||.273|
|a- Carlos Gomez, PH-CF||2||0||1||0||0||1||1||.241|
|Jonathan Lucroy, C||4||0||0||0||0||1||4||.314|
|Craig Counsell, SS||2||0||1||1||0||0||0||.194|
|b- Yuniesky Betancourt, PH-SS||2||0||0||0||0||0||2||.260|
|Marco Estrada, P||2||0||0||0||0||2||2||.250|
|Mitch Stetter, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|c- Corey Hart, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.211|
|Sean Green, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Sergio Mitre, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a-doubled for Kotsay in the 7th|
|b-popped out for Counsell in the 7th|
|c-struck out for Stetter in the 7th|
|2B - Carlos Gomez (3, O'Flaherty)|
|3B - Rickie Weeks (2, Linebrink)|
|HR - Prince Fielder (7, Hanson)|
|RBI - Nyjer Morgan (3), Prince Fielder (27), Craig Counsell (1)|
|2-OUT RBI - Craig Counsell (1)|
|SB - Rickie Weeks (3, 2nd base off Hanson/McCann)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|Marco Estrada (L,1-1)||5.1||9||7||7||3||5||0||4.78|
|HBP - Heyward (by Mitch Stetter)|
|WP - Mitch Stetter (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Marco Estrada 114-71, Mitch Stetter 12-8, Sean Green 25-14, Sergio Mitre 32-18|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Marco Estrada 7-4|
|Batters Faced - Marco Estrada 28, Mitch Stetter 4, Sean Green 5, Sergio Mitre 6|
|Martin Prado, LF||5||2||3||3||0||2||2||.265|
|Jason Heyward, RF||3||1||1||0||1||0||2||.250|
|Chipper Jones, 3B||5||0||1||2||0||1||4||.278|
|Brian McCann, C||3||0||1||2||1||0||1||.300|
|Dan Uggla, 2B||5||0||0||0||0||2||5||.200|
|Freddie Freeman, 1B||4||1||2||0||1||1||0||.227|
|Alex Gonzalez, SS||5||1||1||0||0||1||4||.239|
|Nate McLouth, CF||3||2||3||0||1||0||0||.274|
|Tommy Hanson, P||2||0||1||0||0||1||3||.077|
|a- Brooks Conrad, PH||0||1||0||0||1||0||0||.154|
|Eric O'Flaherty, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Eric Hinske, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||2||.276|
|Scott Linebrink, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Cory Gearrin, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a-walked for Hanson in the 6th|
|b-struck out for O'Flaherty in the 7th|
|2B - Jason Heyward (4, Mitre), Nate McLouth (8, M. Estrada)|
|SF - Brian McCann (1)|
|RBI - Martin Prado 3 (16), Chipper Jones 2 (23), Brian McCann 2 (16)|
|2-OUT RBI - Brian McCann (11)|
|Team LOB - 11|
|Tommy Hanson (W,4-3)||6||3||2||2||2||7||1||2.63|
|Pitches-Strikes - Tommy Hanson 101-62, Eric O'Flaherty 12-9, Scott Linebrink 23-13, Cory Gearrin 10-8|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tommy Hanson 4-7, Scott Linebrink 1-2, Cory Gearrin 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Tommy Hanson 23, Eric O'Flaherty 4, Scott Linebrink 4, Cory Gearrin 4|
|Attendance - 0|
|Game Time - 3:14|
|Temperature - 65|
|Umpires - Home - Gary Cederstrom, First Base - Mike Estabrook, Second Base - Adrian Johnson, Third Base - Field Culbreth|