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Atlanta at Cincinnati

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Atlanta (20-13) «0001010507110
Cincinnati (19-16)001000001270

Braves 7, Reds 2

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Mike Leake ended Cincinnati's streak of six straight subpar rotation performances. It wasn't enough to get a win.

Dan Uggla hit a pair of solo homers off Leake, and Juan Francisco added his first career grand slam as the Atlanta Braves recovered from a stunning last-swing loss by beating the Reds 7-2 Wednesday.

Atlanta took two of three in the series, the first the Reds lost at home this season. The Reds are 13-6 at Great American Ball Park, the most home wins the majors.

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Devin Mesoraco and Shin-Soo Choo hit two-out homers in the ninth inning for Cincinnati's 5-4 win on Tuesday night. A day later, one of the NL's top power teams got the better of it. Atlanta came into the game tied with Colorado for the NL lead with 44 homers and hit three more off Leake and the bullplen.

"I felt good," Leake said. "I was mixing and matching."

Uggla had solo shots in the fourth and sixth innings off Leake (2-2), his first multihomer game this season.

The Braves took all the stress out of it by sending nine batters to the plate for five runs in the eighth off three Reds pitchers. Francisco hit the Braves' first grand slam of the season off J.J. Hoover, the player he was traded for last year.

His fifth homer landed in the Braves' bullpen down the right field line. Francisco said he got no extra pleasure from hitting the grand slam against the team that traded him away.

"It just felt good that I got first grand slam in major leagues," he said.

The top of the lineup had a big day, too. Jordan Schafer had three hits, and Andrelton Simmons had a career-high four hits in the top two spots.

Left-hander Mike Minor (4-2) allowed four hits in seven innings, including Zack Cozart's homer in the third. He got Leake to fly out with two out and two aboard in the seventh, throwing 117 pitches overall.

Last year, Leake homered off Minor's changeup. This time, he got nothing but fastballs.

"Minor looks like he has more confidence than he did last year," Leake said.

Minor has been tough on left-handed batters this season. Reds manager Dusty Baker figured Leake -- a .313 hitter with 50 hits over the last four seasons -- was his best option.

"We had a choice of letting him hit or using a pinch-hitter," Baker said. "Not taking anything away from our guys, but he was the best right-handed hitter we had on the bench."

Jay Bruce had a solo shot in the ninth off Anthony Varvaro.

The game matched starting pitchers taken back-to-back in the 2009 amateur draft. Minor was taken seventh out of Vanderbilt, with Leake drafted next out of Arizona State. They faced each other in college.

There was a replay review in the fourth, when Evan Gattis hit a long foul down the third base line. Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez talked to the umpires, who reviewed the play for three minutes, five seconds and upheld the call. Gattis struck out on the next pitch.

Up came Uggla, who homered on the following pitch to tie it at 1. Uggla is 4 for 10 career off Leake with three homers.

Both teams wasted early bases-loaded opportunities.

Cincinnati loaded the bases with no outs in the second. Donald Lutz flied out to left field, and Gattis threw out Brandon Phillips at the plate as he tagged on the play. The Braves loaded the bases with one out in the third before Freddie Freeman grounded into a double play.

Notes

  • The Braves head to San Francisco for a four-game series. The Reds are off Thursday before hosting Milwaukee.
  • Uggla has a six-game hitting streak.
  • Simmons has seven multi-hit games in his last 16.
  • Braves C Brian McCann, who returned from the DL at the start of the series, got the day off. McCann had surgery on his throwing shoulder last October.
  • The Reds' 5-4 win on Tuesday night marked the first time since 1977 that Cincinnati won a game with a pair of two-out homers in the ninth. Dan Driessen and Johnny Bench had homers off Philadelphia's Tug McGraw for a 6-5 win. Driessen's homer was inside the park.
 
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

D. Uggla
AB 4
R 3
H 2
HR 2
RBI 2
Cincinnati

Z. Cozart
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Atlanta Braves
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Jordan Schafer, CF5130010 .310
Andrelton Simmons, SS5040001 .276
Freddie Freeman, 1B4111103 .316
Evan Gattis, LF3000022 .243
    Justin Upton, LF1100101 .276
Dan Uggla, 2B4322013 .209
Juan Francisco, 3B4114000 .280
Reed Johnson, RF3000110 .231
Gerald Laird, C3000001 .300
Mike Minor, P3000011 .000
   a- Chris Johnson, PH1000011 .320
    Anthony Varvaro, P0000000 .000
Totals36711737  
a-struck out for Minor in the 8th
Batting
2B - Andrelton Simmons (6, Simon)
3B - Jordan Schafer (1, Leake)
HR - Dan Uggla 2 (7, Leake, Leake), Juan Francisco (5, Hoover)
RBI - Freddie Freeman (18), Dan Uggla 2 (12), Juan Francisco 4 (16)
2-OUT RBI - Dan Uggla (4)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Evan Gattis 1
DP - Gattis-Laird
Atlanta Braves
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Mike Minor (W,4-2) 7411371 2.96
Anthony Varvaro 2311031 1.53
WP - Anthony Varvaro (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Minor 117-74, Anthony Varvaro 38-26
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Minor 3-10, Anthony Varvaro 2-1
Batters Faced - Mike Minor 27, Anthony Varvaro 9
Cincinnati Reds
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Shin-Soo Choo, CF4000021 .323
Zack Cozart, SS4121000 .217
Joey Votto, 1B4000020 .315
Brandon Phillips, 2B4010011 .280
Jay Bruce, RF3111100 .248
Todd Frazier, 3B3010120 .239
Donald Lutz, LF4010001 .267
Devin Mesoraco, C3000113 .226
Mike Leake, P3010012 .294
    Sean Marshall, P0000000 .000
    J.J. Hoover, P0000000 .000
    Alfredo Simon, P0000000 .500
   a- Jack Hannahan, PH1000011 .267
Totals33272310  
a-struck out for Simon in the 9th
Batting
2B - Brandon Phillips (9, Minor)
HR - Zack Cozart (5, Minor), Jay Bruce (2, Varvaro)
RBI - Zack Cozart (16), Jay Bruce (17)
2-OUT RBI - Zack Cozart (9)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - B. Phillips-Cozart-Votto, B. Phillips-Votto
Cincinnati Reds
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Mike Leake (L,2-2) 7844162 4.32
Sean Marshall0111000 1.69
J.J. Hoover 1122211 3.78
Alfredo Simon 1100000 4.08
HBP - Laird (by Mike Leake)
WP - Alfredo Simon (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Leake 105-67, Sean Marshall 4-3, J.J. Hoover 21-11, Alfredo Simon 14-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Leake 9-4, J.J. Hoover 1-1, Alfredo Simon 1-2
Batters Faced - Mike Leake 29, Sean Marshall 1, J.J. Hoover 6, Alfredo Simon 4
Game Information
Attendance - 32640
Game Time - 3:04
Temperature - 66
Umpires - Home - Kerwin Danley, First Base - Mike Muchlinski, Second Base - Victor Carapazza, Third Base - Gary Cederstrom