Baseball / Sports

Braves' grab much-needed victory over Padres

Keep the line moving.

It's the Braves' offensive mantra.

Well, they did just that all the way through the lineup in the fourth inning of a 5-3 victory over the Padres on Saturday night. The four-run outburst was all the support ace Julio Teheran would need -- even if he wasn't his dominant self at Turner Field.

The offensive effort gave the Braves a much-needed victory.

The Braves (56-48) snapped a two-game losing streak and won for the second time in the past six games. They also picked up a game in the NL East race, moving to 1 1/2 games behind the Nationals, who lost to the Reds Saturday afternoon.

The Braves scored four times in the decisive inning as they batted around with three hits, three walks and two Padre errors. Chris Johnson singled in a run. Teheran successfully executed a suicide squeeze to plate a run. Tommy La Stella singled and the Braves scored on a throwing error on the play. Freddie Freeman singled in the final run. Jason Heyward, Evan Gattis and B.J. Upton all drew walks.

The Braves chased Padres starter Odrisamer Despaigne (2-2) during the inning. He allowed six hits, five runs (two earned) and five walks in 3 2/3 innings.

Teheran (10-6) entered with a major-league leading 1.23 ERA at home this season. The Padres managed three earned runs off him in his six innings of work. He allowed nine hits, two short of his career-high. Teheran's home ERA is still only 1.48 after the outing.

Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth, striking out the side, to earn his 31st save. He finished a bullpen effort that did not allow a hit over the final three innings.

Freeman went 3-for-5 for the Braves. The first baseman is 5-for-9 through the first two games of the series. Gattis went 2-for-2 and reached base all four times with a double, walk, single and hit by pitch. La Stella went 3-for-4 and reached base four times with three singles and a walk.

The Braves also scored a run in the second inning as Gattis hit a ground-rule double to right-center to follow a Heyward walk. Johnson brought Heyward home with a groundout.

The Padres scored twice in the fourth inning as a Yasmani Grandal double followed singles by Yangervis Solarte and Seth Smith to start the inning. Teheran escaped further damage by getting the next three batters in order. They added another run in the fifth on an RBI single by Solarte.

The Padres (46-57) had a three-game win streak snapped.

The four-game series continues Sunday.

(c)2014 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Atlanta, Ga.)

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