Teheran closing season on a strong note for Braves
ATLANTA (AP) — Julio Teheran’s 2017 statistics aren’t exactly glowing.
The Braves’ ace has a 4.39 ERA, the highest of his career. He’s likely to finish with his fewest strikeouts in five full seasons.
But Teheran is finishing the year strong. The two-time All-Star has a 2.25 ERA in his last eight starts, recovering from a dismal stretch this summer that included an Atlanta record nine straight losses at home.
“I want to do good at the park we play in the most,” he said. “I’m glad that I found a way. We’ve just got to keep it going.”
Pinch-hitter Johan Camargo doubled in two runs in the three-run eighth inning, Teheran pitched seven strong innings and the Atlanta Braves beat the Philadelphia Phillies 4-2 on Saturday night.
The Braves wiped out a 2-1 deficit against reliever Luis Garcia (2-5) when pinch-runner Micah Johnson replaced Matt Adams, stole second base and scored on Dansby Swanson’s single. After Garcia’s wild pitch moved up Swanson and Rio Ruiz, both runners easily crossed the plate on Camargo’s liner to right-center.
Atlanta closer Arodys Vizcaino struck out Aaron Altherr, Maikel Franco and J.P. Crawford in the ninth to earn his 13th save in 16 chances.
Atlanta has won three straight. The Phillies have dropped three in a row.
Garcia allowed three runs, three hits and one walk in 2/3 of an inning.
Rex Brothers (4-3) earned the win after facing four batters in the eighth. He allowed one hit.
Teheran allowed seven hits, one walk and two runs — one earned. He struck out five, but his biggest pitch came with the bases loaded in the seventh on Odubel Herrera’s groundout.
“I think it was huge to be able to get out of that inning,” Teheran said. “I wanted to try my best. I gave up one run early but I was trying to keep the score low. I knew the guys would get some runs later.”
Philadelphia led 1-0 in the first on Rhys Hoskins’ RBI double. They made it 2-0 in the fifth when Franco singled and scored from third on Tyler Flowers’ passed ball. Ruiz’s fourth homer, coming off Kevin Siegrist in the sixth, cut the lead to 2-1.
Phillies starter Henderson Alvarez allowed five hits and two walks and struck out three. He had lost six consecutive starts since Sept. 28, 2014.
Garcia began the game with a 1.60 ERA since June 14. He hadn’t allowed a run in his last 12 appearances.
“Luis got behind on the hitters and didn’t throw quality strikes,” Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. “He’s had some good moments and some bad moments like tonight. When you’re pitching in a clutch situation like that you can’t fall behind hitters.”
Braves 1B Freddie Freeman has a stomach virus and was told early in the afternoon to stay home. Snitker didn’t know if Freeman will be back on Sunday.
The Braves and C Kurt Suzuki agreed to a $3.5 million, one-year contract for 2018. General manager John Coppollela said the club intends to exercise Flowers’ $4 million option for next year and bring back a catching tandem that ranks second in NL with 29 homers. “A couple years ago we didn’t have either player, and we were very fortunate in seeing what a great impact they’ve made on our young pitchers,” Coppollela said. “That’s part of why we want them around here beyond 2017.”
Ruiz’s homer was the 215th allowed by Philadelphia, topping the club record set in 2004. The Phillies gave up 213 last year, fourth-most in the majors. They began Saturday tied for sixth-most allowed.
Phillies: Rookie RHP Nick Pivetta (6-10, 6.57 ERA) will make his 25th start. His 89 earned runs are fourth-most in the NL, but Pivetta is 2-0 with a 3.27 ERA in two career starts against Atlanta.
Braves: LHP Luiz Gohara (1-2, 6.06 ERA) has never faced Philadelphia. The rookie will make his fourth start. He’s allowed 21 hits and four walks in his first 16 1/3 career innings.
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