Houston at Atlanta

W: T. Hanson (5-3) L: F. Abad (1-4)
S: C. Kimbrel (11)
HR: HOU - M. Downs (3)   ATL - None

Braves 3, Astros 2

CBSSports.com wire reports

ATLANTA -- Fredi Gonzalez wouldn't accept credit for bringing Eric Hinske and Joe Mather off Atlanta's bench to start against the Astros.

"That was the only option we had," the Atlanta Braves manager said.

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Hinske had three hits, including a tie-breaking single in the seventh, Mather had a two-run single and the Braves used a makeshift lineup to beat Houston 3-2 on Monday night.

Gonzalez subbed Hinske in left field and Mather in right as the Braves were missing third baseman Chipper Jones and right fielder Jason Heyward from their starting lineup.

"We're just trying to fill in for the guys who are down right now," Hinske said.

Heyward, who missed his sixth straight start with inflammation in his right shoulder, entered the game in the eighth inning as a defensive replacement. In his first at-bat since Tuesday, Heyward hit a grounder in the eighth and was safe on shortstop Clint Barmes' throwing error.

Gonzalez said Heyward will start Tuesday's finale of the two-game series.

An MRI on Sunday revealed Jones has a small meniscus tear in his right knee. He had two shots in the knee Sunday and said he felt better on Monday.

Jones said he may start Tuesday if he continues to improve. If there is persistent pain, however, Jones could need arthroscopic surgery.

Tommy Hanson (5-3) gave up three hits and two runs, one earned, in seven innings. He struck out 10, one shy of his career high, with only one walk.

Hanson, who lowered his ERA to 2.35, has won his last four decisions. He said he wanted to help make sure the Braves avoided a letdown after winning two of three games against first-place Philadelphia.

"I think the biggest thing was we got a little bit of momentum this weekend against Philly and just wanted to keep rolling," Hanson said.

Craig Kimbrel gave up a single to Carlos Lee but struck out the side in the ninth for his 11th save.

Hanson struggled only against Matt Downs, who had a homer and RBI double.

"He's got good stuff," Downs said of Hanson. "He's got great stuff. I just got a couple balls up in the zone and put some good wood on it."

After Fernando Abad (1-4) walked Nate McLouth and Dan Uggla in the seventh, Hinske's single to right drove in McLouth for a 3-2 lead.

Downs hit a homer into the chilly wind blowing in from left field to give Houston a 1-0 lead in the fifth. Following Mather's two-run single for Atlanta in the sixth, Downs' double in the seventh drove in Lee, who reached on third baseman Martin Prado's throwing error, for a 2-2 tie.

Houston's Brett Myers lasted six innings despite needing 56 pitches to escape bases-loaded jams in each of the first two innings. The right-hander gave up eight hits and two runs with six strikeouts and three walks.

"I was trying to throw strikes," Myers said. "I was trying to get out of jams. I was trying to do damage control."

Prado, the regular in left field, filled in for Jones at third base and had the defensive play of the game in the first when he made a diving stop of a sharp grounder hit by Lee. Prado's throw from his knees beat Lee to first base.

Prado made another strong play in the third, charging in to field Michael Bourn's bunt and throwing out the speedy runner. He threw high to first for an error after fielding another grounder from Lee in the seventh.

Prado was primarily a second baseman before moving to the outfield after the Braves made an offseason trade for Uggla.


Lee's fourth-inning single gave him a 10-game hitting streak. He is hitting .400 (16 for 40) with two homers in the streak. ... Gonzalez said RHP Julio Teheran will be recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to start on Wednesday at Arizona. ... Prado had a first-inning single before he hit into three double plays.

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

T. Hanson
IP 7.0
H 3
ER 1
BB 1
K 10

M. Downs
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 1

Related Video

May 23, 2017
MLB Power Rankings (5/23) (1:51)
Houston Astros
Michael Bourn, CF4000020 .263
Clint Barmes, SS3000110 .184
Hunter Pence, RF4000020 .281
Carlos Lee, LF4120001 .250
    J.R. Towles, PR0000000 .245
Brett Wallace, 1B4000033 .323
Bill Hall, 2B3000031 .230
    Wilton Lopez, P0000000 .000
   a- Brian Bogusevic, PH1000011 .308
Matt Downs, 3B3122000 .318
Humberto Quintero, C3000011 .231
Brett Myers, P2000010 .211
    Fernando Abad, P0000000 .000
    Angel Sanchez, 2B1000010 .275
a-struck out for Lopez in the 9th
2B - Matt Downs (5, Hanson)
HR - Matt Downs (3, Hanson)
RBI - Matt Downs 2 (11)
2-OUT RBI - Matt Downs (6)
Team LOB - 4
DP - Myers-Barmes-Wallace, Hall-Wallace, Downs-Sanchez-Wallace
E - Clint Barmes (1, Throwing), Brett Myers (1, Misplayed grounder)
Houston Astros
Brett Myers 6822360 4.79
Fernando Abad (L,1-4) 0.1111210 7.43
Wilton Lopez 1.2000010 3.46
Pitches-Strikes - Brett Myers 110-69, Fernando Abad 22-9, Wilton Lopez 15-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brett Myers 7-4, Wilton Lopez 3-1
Batters Faced - Brett Myers 28, Fernando Abad 4, Wilton Lopez 5
Atlanta Braves
Martin Prado, 3B5010004 .285
Nate McLouth, CF2110200 .266
Brian McCann, C4000015 .291
Dan Uggla, 2B2000200 .209
Eric Hinske, LF4131013 .362
    Eric O'Flaherty, P0000000 .000
    Craig Kimbrel, P0000000 .000
Alex Gonzalez, SS4110036 .239
Freddie Freeman, 1B3000114 .233
Joe Mather, RF-LF4022010 .235
Tommy Hanson, P2010012 .125
    Jason Heyward, RF1000000 .219
SH - Tommy Hanson (5)
RBI - Eric Hinske (12), Joe Mather 2 (2)
Team LOB - 10
E - Martin Prado (3, Throwing)
Atlanta Braves
Tommy Hanson (W,5-3) 73211101 2.35
Eric O'Flaherty (H,8) 1000020 0.87
Craig Kimbrel (S,11) 1100030 2.18
WP - Tommy Hanson (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Tommy Hanson 94-67, Eric O'Flaherty 14-8, Craig Kimbrel 21-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tommy Hanson 8-4, Eric O'Flaherty 1-0
Batters Faced - Tommy Hanson 26, Eric O'Flaherty 3, Craig Kimbrel 4
Game Information
Attendance - 17416
Game Time - 2:44
Temperature - 59
Umpires - Home - Brian O'Nora, First Base - Alfonso Marquez, Second Base - Ed Hickox, Third Base - Ed Rapuano