Philadelphia at Atlanta

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Philadelphia (45-55)100000000172
Atlanta (55-44) «02003100x650

Sheets, Braves handle Phillies

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- Ben Sheets, signed to a minor league contract nearly four weeks ago, was sharp. Cole Hamels, who signed a $144 million deal two days ago, had the worst control of his career.

Brian McCann hit a three-run homer off Hamels, and Sheets continued his impressive comeback to lead the Atlanta Braves past the Philadelphia Phillies 6-1 on Friday night.

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Sheets (3-0) won his third straight start, allowing one run and six hits with one walk and four strikeouts in six innings.

After missing all of last season while recovering from elbow surgery, Sheets signed the minor league deal on July 1 and had his contract purchased by the Braves on July 15.

Asked if the month has been a blur, Sheets said "Man, I'm just riding it, riding the wave.

"I mean, I'm on a very good team and the guys are doing the heavy pulling. I'm just trying to put in a little two cents myself, trying to help us out."

The Braves trail first-place Washington, which lost to Milwaukee 6-0, by four games in the NL East.

McCann has eight homers and 19 RBI in his last 15 games since July 5 and has lifted his batting average from .225 to .242.

"I like hitting right now," McCann said. "It's been a good couple of weeks, a good month I guess. I'm just glad I'm back to where I have been my whole career. My first half was brutal. I just put it behind me. To be honest I think that was the best thing that's ever happened to me. It made me get back to the basics and doing what I've always done. It was a wakeup call, it really was."

McCann has six home runs and 16 RBI in six games against the Phillies this season, giving him 17 homers overall.

Hamels (11-5), making his first start since signing the six-year extension on Wednesday, set a career high with six walks in his shortest start of the season. He allowed five runs, three earned, on four hits with seven strikeouts in five innings.

He said he has been through a lot this week.

"It was a long week," Hamels said. "I don't think I'll have to experience that again."

Hamels said he was affected by "one of the more humid days I've ever had to pitch.

"It was one of the few games I've had to change my jersey twice," he said. "I'm hoping I don't have to do that ever again."

Hamels said the humidity affected his grip on the ball.

"I tried to force the issue over and over and over," he said. "Every pitch I could throw today was problematic."

The Braves weren't expecting six walks from Hamels.

"We got Cole on an off night," said Chipper Jones. "I don't know that I've ever seen him walk five or six guys in a game. Very uncharacteristic but we took advantage of it."

The loss ended Philadelphia's four-game winning streak and cost the Phillies a chance to move out of last place in the NL East.

Sheets did not allow a run while winning his first two starts in his comeback with Atlanta. That streak of 12 scoreless innings ended before he recorded an out against the Phillies.

Jimmy Rollins led off with a single and scored on Shane Victorino's double to the gap in right-center.

The Braves, helped by Hamels' control problems and a fielding error by third baseman Mike Fontenot, scored two unearned runs in the second. The inning could have been bigger, as Jones was picked off second base after his leadoff double.

Hamels walked Freddie Freeman, Dan Uggla and Paul Janish to load the bases with two outs. Sheets' grounder bounced under Fontenot's glove for an error, allowing Freeman to score. Michael Bourn's single to left field drove in Uggla, giving the Braves a 2-1 lead.

After Jason Heyward walked with one out in the fifth, Jones added his second double of the game. Hamels struck out Freeman before McCann's three-run homer, a high blast to center field, gave Atlanta a 5-1 lead.

John Mayberry Jr.'s dropped Bourn's fly ball in the left-field corner for a three-base error with two outs in the sixth. Martin Prado's single off Jeremy Horst pushed the lead to 6-1.

The Phillies loaded the bases against Jonny Venters in the seventh, but he struck out Ryan Howard to end the threat.

Notes

  • Hamels' previous high was five walks, most recently on June 29, 2007, against the Mets.
  • Jones moved into a second-place tie with Pete Rose for most extra-base hits by switch-hitters with 1,041, behind Eddie Murray's 1,099.
  • The Phillies recalled IF Kevin Frandsen from Triple-A Lehigh Valley after placing 3B Placido Polanco on the 15-day DL with lower back inflammation. The move with Polanco is retroactive to Monday.
  • The Braves signed RHP Miguel Batista, 41, who was released by the Mets, to a minor league contract. He will report to Triple-A Gwinnett.
  • The Braves promoted LHP Sean Gilmartin, a 2011 first-round pick, to Gwinnett.
  • Braves LHP Mike Minor will face Phillies RHP Joe Blanton as the series continues on Saturday night. The start time was changed from 4:05 p.m. to 7:10 p.m. to accommodate TV.
 
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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The Braves' Ben Sheets allows one run on six hits in six innings of work to defeat the Phillies and improve to 3-0.  (Getty Images)
The Braves' Ben Sheets allows one run on six hits in six innings of work to defeat the Phillies and improve to 3-0. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Atlanta

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

M. Bourn
AB 5
R 1
H 1
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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Philadelphia Phillies
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Jimmy Rollins, SS4120100 .256
Shane Victorino, CF4021001 .256
Chase Utley, 2B3000101 .247
Ryan Howard, 1B4010034 .245
Carlos Ruiz, C3010101 .344
Hunter Pence, RF4010003 .267
Juan Pierre, LF3000003 .305
    Jeremy Horst, P0000000 .000
   a- Laynce Nix, PH1000010 .314
    Joe Savery, P0000000 .000
Mike Fontenot, 3B2000010 .292
   b- Ty Wigginton, PH-3B2000020 .232
Cole Hamels, P2000010 .256
    John Mayberry Jr., LF2000010 .235
Totals3417139  
a-struck out for Horst in the 8th
b-struck out for Fontenot in the 7th
Batting
2B - Jimmy Rollins (23, Sheets), Shane Victorino (17, Sheets), Carlos Ruiz (27, Sheets)
RBI - Shane Victorino (39)
SB - Jimmy Rollins (17, 3rd base off Venters/McCann), Shane Victorino (23, 2nd base off Venters/McCann)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
PB - Carlos Ruiz (4)
E - Mike Fontenot (5, Misplayed grounder), John Mayberry Jr. (2, Dropped fly)
Philadelphia Phillies
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Cole Hamels (L,11-5) 5453671 3.31
Jeremy Horst 2110120 0.90
Joe Savery 1000100 5.40
Pitches-Strikes - Cole Hamels 109-53, Jeremy Horst 42-25, Joe Savery 15-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Cole Hamels 3-5, Joe Savery 1-2
Batters Faced - Cole Hamels 25, Jeremy Horst 9, Joe Savery 4
Atlanta Braves
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Michael Bourn, CF5111012 .298
Martin Prado, LF5011014 .303
Jason Heyward, RF3100131 .267
Chipper Jones, 3B4120010 .317
Freddie Freeman, 1B1100312 .272
Brian McCann, C4113003 .242
Dan Uggla, 2B3100111 .211
Paul Janish, SS1000310 .179
Ben Sheets, P2000001 .000
   a- Tyler Pastornicky, PH1000000 .248
    Jonny Venters, P0000000 .000
    Chad Durbin, P0000000 .000
   b- Juan Francisco, PH1000001 .239
    Cristhian Martinez, P0000000 .000
Totals3065589  
a-flied out for Sheets in the 6th
b-flied out for Durbin in the 8th
Batting
2B - Chipper Jones 2 (14, Hamels, Hamels)
HR - Brian McCann (17, Hamels)
RBI - Michael Bourn (41), Martin Prado (43), Brian McCann 3 (54)
2-OUT RBI - Michael Bourn (15), Martin Prado (17), Brian McCann 3 (26)
PK - Chipper Jones (1, Hamels)
Team LOB - 8
Atlanta Braves
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Ben Sheets (W,3-0) 6611140 0.50
Jonny Venters 1100220 3.96
Chad Durbin 1000010 3.49
Cristhian Martinez 1000020 4.13
Pitches-Strikes - Ben Sheets 94-58, Jonny Venters 32-15, Chad Durbin 12-9, Cristhian Martinez 14-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ben Sheets 9-5, Jonny Venters 1-0, Chad Durbin 1-1
Batters Faced - Ben Sheets 25, Jonny Venters 6, Chad Durbin 3, Cristhian Martinez 3
Game Information
Attendance - 42239
Game Time - 2:44
Temperature - 85
Umpires - Home - Field Culbreth, First Base - Lance Barksdale, Second Base - Gary Cederstrom, Third Base - Mike Muchlinski