Posted: Saturday, April 12th 2014 at 11:21pm
Freeman's 3 hits lead Braves past Nationals 6-3
By The Associated Press
ATLANTA -- Freddie Freeman had three hits, including a homer, and the Atlanta Braves beat Washington 6-3 on Saturday night to continue their early success against the Nationals.
B.J. Upton had two hits, including his first homer, and Dan Uggla drove in two runs with two hits for Atlanta.
After winning two of three at Washington in the opening week, the Braves have won the first two games of a weekend home series against their NL East rivals.
Braves left-hander Alex Wood (2-1) allowed one run on six hits and three walks in five innings. Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth for his fifth save.
Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman left the game with an apparent right thumb injury. Washington placed Denard Span on the seven-day disabled list with a concussion before the game.
Upton, who began the night hitting .135, and Uggla, batting .162, finally got untracked. Justin Upton had three hits, including two doubles, to extend his tear at the plate. Evan Gattis also had three hits.
Washington starter Taylor Jordan (0-1) allowed five runs on 10 hits and two walks in five innings. Anthony Rendon hit his second homer leading off the game.
Zimmerman was hurt diving back to the bag when he was picked off second base in the fifth. The Nationals provided no immediate update on his status.
Span had headaches following a collision on the basepath with Uggla on Friday night.
Right fielder Jayson Werth, who left Friday night's game with cramping in his groin, did not start. He had a pinch-hit infield single in the eighth following Sandy Leon's run-scoring single. Freeman's throwing error on Werth's hit left runners at first and third, but Rendon's fly to center ended the inning.
Washington's makeshift outfield included Bryce Harper in center, Kevin Frandsen in left and Nate McLouth in right.
Nationals manager Matt Williams used his replay challenge in the second inning after McLouth, credited with a sacrifice bunt, was called out at first base. The call by umpire Angel Hernandez stood following a video review.
Williams could have used his challenge two innings later when replays indicated first baseman Adam LaRoche snagged a liner by Freeman as Jason Heyward advanced from first to second. LaRoche stepped on the bag for an apparent double play, but the umpires huddled - with Williams standing a few feet away - and ruled the ball hit the ground before the catch was made.
McLouth was involved in another questionable call in the fifth when he dropped a flyball hit by Andrelton Simmons. Replays indicated McLouth made the catch and was transferring the ball to his glove when it fell to the ground, but Hernandez ruled it was not a catch. The call left the bases loaded, but Jordan escaped by striking out pinch-hitter Ryan Doumit and Heyward.
Right-hander Blake Treinen, called up from Triple-A Syracuse before the game, pitched two scoreless innings in his major league debut.
NOTES: The Nationals also recalled OF Steven Souza Jr. and optioned RHP Blake Barrett to Syracuse. ... Gattis tied his career high with three hits. ... Justin Upton is 11 for 19 with three homers in the first five games of the homestand. ... The Nationals were charged with three errors, including two throwing miscues by SS Ian Desmond. ... The series ends Sunday when Atlanta RHP Aaron Harang faces LHP Gio Gonzalez.
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