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Braves, Teheran top Marlins, Fernandez

The SportsXchange

ATLANTA -- Jose Fernandez was sharp once again for the Miami Marlins, but fellow rookie Julio Teheran of the Atlanta Braves was just a little bit better.

Freddie Freeman hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Braves defeated the Marlins 2-1 on Friday night at Turner Field to snap Fernandez's five-game winning streak.

"They both pitched really, really well," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "I've got a feeling those guys are going to match up in a lot of games in the future."

Teheran (11-7) allowed four hits in 6 1/3 innings. Fernandez's triple led to the only run against the 22-year-old from Colombia who struck out eight and walked three while lowering his ERA to 3.01.

"I was really concentrating this game," Teheran said. "I knew a lot of people were watching us. I was excited to show everybody what I could do."

Fernandez (10-6) gave up three hits and struck out eight in six innings but was victimized by Freeman's first-inning homer. The 21-year-old from Cuba, who has a 2.33 ERA, walked two, one intentionally.

"It was pretty tough, but I learned a lot from it," said Fernandez, who will be shut down for the season soon. "I'll get a chance to face them at home, I hope, and see how it goes."

It was the ninth consecutive start that Fernandez had allowed two runs or less, but it wasn't enough to keep the last-place Marlins' losing streak from reaching five.

The Braves, who lead the National League East by 14 games, have won five in a row and are 48-18 at home.

With the Atlanta bullpen taxed, Anthony Varvaro pitched the final two innings to pick up his first major league save. He allowed a leadoff single in the eighth, but Giancarlo Stanton was doubled up trying to advance on a fly ball to right fielder Jordan Schafer.

The Braves shined on defense all game, with shortstop Andrelton Simmons turning in a couple of stunners.

"He's unbelievable," Gonzalez said. "The play is never over with him. The stuff he does you can't teach."

The Braves scored all the runs they needed when Elliott Johnson doubled with one out in the first. On the next pitch, Freeman picked on a changeup and sent a drive to left center field that hit the top of the fence and bounced over.

It was Freeman's 17th homer of the season and the first that Fernandez had given up since July 23 in Colorado -- seven starts ago.

"He got me," Fernandez said. "He's a pretty good hitter."

Fernandez, a .143 hitter coming in, helped himself with a leadoff triple to right-center field in the third inning, sliding into third headfirst to just beat the relay throw. Christian Yelich drove in Fernandez with a single, but Teheran worked out of a bases-loaded jam to keep the lead.

NOTES: Braves rookie C/OF Evan Gattis, who has 15 homers, was sent down to Triple-A Gwinnett after the game and will be recalled on Tuesday after playing in three games. He was walked intentionally as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning, but is hitless in his last 17 at-bats. ... Fernandez broke the Marlins' rookie record for strikeouts in a season when he fanned Chris Johnson in the first inning after Freeman's homer. Scott Olsen struck out 166 in 2006 to establish the previous record. ... Although X-rays of his left hand were negative, Braves OF Justin Upton wasn't in the starting lineup. He has a contusion and is listed as day to day after being hit by a fastball from Cleveland's Ubaldo Jimenez on Thursday. ... Braves closer Craig Kimbrel was unavailable Friday after posting two saves and a victory in the three-game sweep of the Indians. He leads the majors with 43 saves, converting a team-record 33 in a row. ... LHP Mike Minor (13-5, 2.99 ERA) will make his fifth start for the Braves against the Marlins in the middle game of the three-game series on Saturday night. RHP Jacob Turner (3-5, 3.12) will pitch for Miami.
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