Teheran's strong outing helps Braves blank Arizona

Stan Awtrey, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

ATLANTA -- Last year Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado were teammates, a pair of prized prospects for the pitching-rich Atlanta Braves. On Friday night they were mound opponents, with Teheran pitching the Braves to a 3-0 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in front of a sellout crowd on Chipper Jones Night at Turner Field.
Teheran (6-4) pitched six scoreless innings, allowing four hits and striking out 10, the second time this season he has reached double figures in strikeouts.
"I think you're seeing a young man who keeps maturing with every start he gets in the big leagues," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said.
In his five starts in June, Teheran was 3-2 with a 1.95 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 32 1/3 innings. His ERA this season is now 3.12.
"I was getting more comfortable with my pitches," Teheran said. "I've been trying to do the same thing I did in spring training."
He was 3-1 with a 1.04 ERA in six Grapefruit League appearances.
The Diamondbacks had only two runners get as far as second base and left four runners on base. It was the first time Arizona has been shut out this season.
"(Teheran) had a good night and we couldn't match him," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said.
The Atlanta relief trio of Luis Avilan, Jordan Walden and Craig Kimbrel shut down the Diamondbacks as Kimbrel earned his 23rd save.
"You mix and match with Avy and Walden and give the ball to Kimbrel and feel you've got a pretty good chance to win the game," Gonzalez said.
Delgado (0-2) pitched well in the loss. The former Atlanta prospect, who was traded to the Diamondbacks along with Martin Prado for Justin Upton and Chris Johnson, allowed two runs, eight hits and three walks (two intentional) and he struck out three in six innings in his third start with Arizona.
"Randall pitched well for us," Gibson said. "He gave us a chance to win. It just wasn't our night tonight."
The crowd of 48,282 arrived early for a pregame ceremony in which the club retired the No. 10 jersey worn for 19 seasons by Jones. He had been inducted into the team's Hall of Fame at a banquet earlier in the afternoon.
The Braves scored a run in the first inning. Jason Heyward stroked a ground-rule double to left with one out and came home on Justin Upton's single. Freddie Freeman walked and the runners advanced on Brian McCann's infield out, but the inning ended when Dan Uggla struck out for the 100th time this season.
Atlanta loaded the bases in the fourth but failed to score. Uggla hit a fly ball into left field that fell between three defenders. B.J. Upton then sent a high fly to center that Gerardo Parra lost in the lights and watched helplessly as it dropped 15 feet behind his right shoulder for a double. Arizona intentionally walked Chris Johnson to load the bases, but Teheran grounded into a double play to end the threat.
Andrelton Simmons led off the bottom of the fifth with a long home run to left center, his sixth homer of the season, to give the Braves a 2-0 lead.
The Braves added an insurance run off reliever Zeke Spruill in the eighth to make it 3-0.
Uggla led off with a triple and B.J. Upton walked. After Chris Johnson struck out, pinch hitter Reed Johnson dropped a squeeze bunt in front of the plate. Uggla slid under the tag and Johnson was safe with an infield hit.
"I was confident he was going to get it down and I was confident that I would get in there," Uggla said.
NOTES: Arizona activated INF Eric Chavez, who had been sidelined with a strained right oblique since May 31. Chavez was 2-for-8 with two walks in three rehab starts with Triple-A Reno. 1B Eric Hinske was designed for assignment to make room on the roster for Chavez. Hinske had been tied for the National League lead for pinch hits (nine). ... The Braves had to scratch Jordan Schafer from the starting lineup because of a sore ankle. Schafer fouled a ball off an ankle on Wednesday against Kansas City. ... Former Brave Martin Prado received a standing ovation when he led off the second inning. The popular Prado was part of the off-season trade that brought Justin Upton and Chris Johnson to Atlanta. ... It was the second sellout of the season for the Braves.

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