(Sports Network) - The Atlanta Braves will try to bounce back and take care of
the Washington Nationals without extra innings Sunday in the finale of a
three-game series from Turner Field.
The Braves needed 10 innings to post a 3-2 win on Friday courtesy of Justin
Upton's game-winning home run, but the Nationals returned the favor with
Saturday's 8-7 triumph in 15 innings. Adam LaRoche led off the top of the 15th
with a home run and Kris Medlen was dealt the loss.
Jason Heyward had a big night with two home runs and three RBI, while Freddie
Freeman and Brian McCann both went deep. McCann finished with three hits for
the NL East-leading Braves, who lost for only the third time in the previous
21 games and are 14 1/2 games in front of Washington in the division.
Mike Minor started for the Braves and was forced out after just 1 2/3 innings,
as he surrendered four runs and four hits.
"They were a lot more patient tonight," Minor said of the Nats' hitters.
Atlanta is 5-3 on its nine-game homestand and will start a six-game road trip
next week against the New York Mets and St. Louis Cardinals.
Julio Teheran draws the start for Atlanta Sunday and he is looking to pitch
his club to another series win. The Braves haven't lost a series since July
19-21 against the Chicago White Sox and are 4-1 in Teheran's last five starts.
Teheran, though, is coming off a loss to Philadelphia on Monday and gave up
four runs in six innings of a 5-1 setback. He is 9-6 in 23 starts to go along
with a 3.08 earned run average and defeated Washington on Aug. 6, tossing six
innings of one-run ball in a 2-1 victory at Nationals Park. He is 1-1 in four
starts with a 3.75 ERA lifetime against the Nats.
The Nationals had so much promise heading into the season, but things have
taken a turn for the worse. They're playing well of late and still sit 8 1/2
games off a wild card spot.
LaRoche had a big hit in the 15th inning and Ryan Zimmerman also homered,
while Wilson Ramos added three hits and two RBI and Denard Span collected a
trio of hits at the plate.
"Just a full team effort. We used up everybody we had, plus one of our
starters coming out and closing the game so pretty awesome," LaRoche said.
Stephen Strasburg yielded two runs in an inning of work and Craig Stammen
picked up the win with three scoreless innings of relief. Strasburg was
ejected for throwing behind Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons twice on
"I can't really explain it. I really didn't feel good out there," he said.
Dan Haren was called on to close out the Braves and fanned two batters in the
Washington, which has won six of eight games, is 1-1 on its 10-game road trip
and will also visit the Chicago Cubs and Kansas City Royals.
Gio Gonzalez gets the call for the Nats Sunday and he is 0-2 in his last five
starts. Gonzalez tossed four shutout innings in a 4-2 win over San Francisco
on Tuesday before it started raining. Gonzalez is 7-5 in 24 starts to go along
with a 3.42 ERA and lost to the Braves on Aug. 6, as he surrendered both runs
in seven innings of a 2-1 loss.
Gonzalez, a left-hander, is 2-5 with a 5.24 ERA in eight career starts against
the rival Braves.
The Braves are 11-4 against the Nationals this season and had won the last six
matchups between the clubs. Atlanta recorded a three-game sweep over the
Nationals last week in D.C.
The Sports Network