Braves 3, Indians 2

The SportsXchange

ATLANTA -- With four relievers already used, the Atlanta Braves didn't want to go to extra innings. Jordan Schafer and Chris Johnson made sure that didn't happen.

Johnson drove in Schafer, who had singled and swiped second, with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Braves a 3-2 interleague victory over the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night.

It was the Braves' 21st final at-bat victory of the season and improved their record at Turner Field to 46-18 -- by far the best in the majors.

Schafer, who was 3-for-4 with a walk and two stolen bases, drove in the Braves' other two runs with a two-out single in the second inning.

Johnson drove a 2-2 pitch from Joe Smith to left field for his first walk-off hit as Schafer beat the throw to the plate with a slide.

Mike Aviles homered in the fourth and had a game-tying sacrifice fly in the eighth for the Indians.

Braves closer Craig Kimbrel, who pitched a perfect top of the ninth, got the victory.

The Indians had tied in the eighth inning of Luis Avilan. Nick Swisher and Jason Kipnis opened the inning with singles and Aviles followed a one-out walk with a game-tying sacrifice fly.

Braves starter Paul Maholm, making his second start since spending a month on the disabled list with a strained left wrist, allowed six hits over six innings, but the only damage came on Aviles' fourth-inning homer.

Maholm's ERA coming into the no-decision was 1.93 at home compared to 6.08 ERA on the road, where he had experienced his four-game losing streak. He worked 5 1/3 innings at St. Louis last Thursday in his return from the disabled list and gave up five runs in the 6-2 loss.

Indians starter Justin Masterson allowed five hits and four walks in six innings, his free pass to Maholm in the second inning leading to the two runs he allowed. It was his third quality start in as many interleague outings this season and his 18th overall.

Braves second baseman Dan Uggla, in his first game after coming off the disabled list following laser eye surgery, was 1-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Masterson walked Maholm with two outs in the second inning and Schafer made the right-hander pay by lining an opposite-field single to drive in two runs. Maholm couldn't score from second base on Justin Upton's hit, though, and Masterson kept away from a big inning by striking out Freddie Freeman with the bases loaded.

Braves center fielder B.J. Upton robbed Carlos Santana with a diving catch to start the fourth inning before Aviles picked on a 0-1 cutter from Maholm and lined his eighth homer of the season just over the left-field fence to make the score 2-1.

The Braves stranded seven runners in the first five innings and the Indians left five as both Maholm and Masterson toughened up with runners on.

NOTES: Indians OF Ryan Raburn, who hadn't played since Aug. 18 because of a strained left Achilles as well as a sore right calf, was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday. Rayburn, second on the team with 15 homers, will be eligible to come off the DL Tuesday. OF Matt Carson was promoted from Triple-A Columbus to fill in. ... The Braves optioned OF Todd Cunningham to Triple-A Gwinnett to make room for Uggla to come off the DL. ... RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (9-8, 3.95) will start for the Indians against RHP Kris Medlen (10-12, 4.74) in the finale of the three-game interleague series Thursday night. Jimenez pitched a no-hitter at Turner Field for Colorado on April 10, 2010.
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