Braves end scoreless streak, rally past Phillies

Braves end scoreless streak, rally past Phillies

PHILADELPHIA -- The Braves snapped a 20-inning scoreless drought and ruined David Buchanan's strong start by producing a decisive three-run seventh inning in Saturday night's 5-2 win over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.

Eric Young Jr.'s two-out RBI double off Jake Diekman capped the go-ahead seventh that was sparked by Andrelton Simmons' leadoff home run. Before allowing Simmons to line his shot over the left-center-field wall, Buchanan had surrendered just one hit against the Braves, who had tallied just two hits while getting shut out in Friday's series opener.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Jed Weisberger is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Freeman, Braves know their defense must improve

Freeman, Braves know their defense must improve

PHILADELPHIA -- Freddie Freeman could not hide his frustration after the Braves suffered their fourth consecutive loss with a tough offensive and defensive performance at Citizens Bank Park on Friday night.

His game-ending error had provided the Phillies a 1-0 victory. But his dismay extended beyond what he had not done with his glove.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wood pitches well, but errors cost Braves

Wood pitches well, but errors cost Braves

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies have scored the fewest runs in baseball this season, but they got the pitching performance they needed Friday in a 1-0 walk-off victory over the Braves at Citizens Bank Park.

Aaron Harang threw eight scoreless innings and Ken Giles pitched a scoreless ninth, setting up the Phillies' game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth. Freddy Galvis singled, reached second on a sacrifice bunt, advanced to third on a passed ball and scored when Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman could not handle a ground ball from Ben Revere.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone. Follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wood, Braves pitching staff very impressive

Wood, Braves pitching staff very impressive

PHILADELPHIA -- Though Jim Johnson's recent frustrations were enhanced during Friday night's 1-0 loss to the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, the recently-maligned Braves bullpen had no reason to be ashamed of the effort it provided in this latest setback.

The Braves bullpen stranded seven inherited runners, including each of the three Alex Wood handed to Cody Martin in the seventh inning. But in the end, they could not overcome an ugly ninth inning that concluded when Freddy Galvis scored with the assistance of a passed ball charged to A.J. Pierzynski and Freddie Freeman's game-ending error.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Braves send for Kohn, Cornely to reinforce 'pen

Right-handers join club as it begins series in Philadelphia

Braves send for Kohn, Cornely to reinforce 'pen

PHILADELPHIA -- Shortly after arriving in Durham, N.C., with their Triple-A Gwinnett teammates late Thursday evening, right-handed relievers Michael Kohn and John Cornely learned they were being promoted to the Major League level to aid the Braves' battered and fatigued bullpen.

Kohn and Cornely were placed on Atlanta's active roster before Friday night's series opener against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. To create roster spots for their two latest bullpen additions, the Braves optioned right-handed relievers Brandon Cunniff and Sugar Ray Marimon to Gwinnett.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hot-hitting Pierzynski earning time over Bethancourt

Veteran catcher hitting over .400 with three homers in his first seven games

Hot-hitting Pierzynski earning time over Bethancourt

NEW YORK -- Though the Braves entered this season with the expectation that Christian Bethancourt would serve as their primary catcher, manager Fredi Gonzalez has opted to frequently put the hot-hitting A.J. Pierzynski behind the plate over the past week.

Coming off Wednesday night's three-hit performance, Pierzynski was behind the plate again for the entirety of Thursday afternoon's 6-3 loss to the Mets. This marked the fifth time in a span of eight games that Bethancourt served as Atlanta's backup catcher.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Walks come around to bite Braves as Mets roll on

Walks come around to bite Braves as Mets roll on

NEW YORK -- Looking back on his club's first homestand, Mets manager Terry Collins admitted that he returned to Citi Field hoping for six, maybe seven victories. The Mets wound up with 10, completing their perfect run with a 6-3 win over the Braves on Thursday afternoon to tie a franchise-record 11-game winning streak.

Behind Bartolo Colon's fourth consecutive victory and Daniel Murphy's four RBIs, they matched their 1986 predecessors for the best 16-game start in Mets history, while improving their league-leading record to 13-3.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Teheran unable to find grip in chilly conditions

Braves starter issues 5 walks in 4 1/3 innings against red-hot Mets

Teheran unable to find grip in chilly conditions

NEW YORK -- Instead of delivering a lengthy start to save the Braves' recently exposed bullpen, Julio Teheran allowed himself to be affected by the chilly elements Thursday afternoon at Citi Field. The weather did not seem to bother the red-hot Mets, who ran their winning streak to 11 games with a 6-3 victory.

"I don't like to make excuses, but [the weather] was affecting me a little bit," Teheran said. "I couldn't find my grip."

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Julio Teheran attempts to eat a baseball

|
Julio Teheran attempts to eat a baseball

Braves starter Julio Teheran walked three of the first four Mets batters to begin Thursday afternoon's National League East matchup. Loading the bases like that in the first inning would make any pitcher turn on the very tools at his disposal. The mere sight of a baseball might make one burn with fury.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Braves' run on review of collision ruling perplexes Mets

Call overturned on Recker's tag of Pierzynski in 2nd inning due to clear-path violation

Braves' run on review of collision ruling perplexes Mets

NEW YORK -- The Braves were credited with a run in the second inning Thursday when umpires ruled that Mets catcher Anthony Recker did not provide a clear lane for A.J. Pierzynski to score.

That's the explanation the Mets received from umpires after a review, but many were still confused by it after New York's 6-3 win.

More

Joe Trezza is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johnson points to unlucky results in bullpen's struggles

Johnson points to unlucky results in bullpen's struggles

NEW YORK -- As the Braves have struggled to extend their early-season success over the past week, their inexperienced bullpen has proven to be a liability. But the most concerning aspect for the Braves stems from the recent struggles endured by Jim Johnson, who retired just one of the five batters he faced during Wednesday night's 3-2 loss to the Mets.

"I look at the execution on pitches and I feel like I executed a lot of pitches," Johnson said. "Three days a week isn't going to define my season. I know the ups and downs of a year, and it seems like a little luck went their way."

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Eric Young Jr. power-bunted into right field

|
Eric Young Jr. power-bunted into right field

Eric Young Jr. is probably Popeye, and before Thursday afternoon's Braves-Mets game, he probably ate a can of spinach.

In the first at-bat of the game, the center fielder was not bounded by the constraints of physical strength. His leadoff bunt -- you know, those hits that typically don't travel past the infield -- sailed into right field.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Braves' loss takes shine off Stults' stellar start

Left-hander minimizes early damage, allows one run over six innings

Braves' loss takes shine off Stults' stellar start

NEW YORK -- Eric Stults provided the Braves exactly what they needed on Wednesday night at Citi Field. But after at least halting concerns about the back end of Atlanta's rotation, the veteran left-hander watched a suddenly leaky bullpen allow the red-hot Mets to claim a 3-2 victory at Citi Field.

"Unfortunately, we weren't able to pull it out tonight," Stults said. "But as a starter, you want to go out and give your team a chance to win. I was able to do that. It just didn't go our way tonight."

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Aaron leading in MLB-wide, Braves Franchise Four vote

Aaron leading in MLB-wide, Braves Franchise Four vote

NEW YORK -- Hank Aaron currently leads the Greatest Living Player category and ranks ahead of all of the Braves greats who have drawn votes through the first two weeks of balloting for Major League Baseball's Franchise Four campaign.

In the balloting to choose the four greatest players in Braves history, Aaron ranks ahead of Chipper Jones, Greg Maddux and Warren Spahn. The other four candidates in this category include Tom Glavine, Eddie Mathews, Dale Murphy and John Smoltz.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Feigl's chance to join 'pen dashed by Tommy John surgery

After strong showing in Braves camp, lefty has procedure on injured elbow

Feigl's chance to join 'pen dashed by Tommy John surgery

NEW YORK -- Brady Feigl exited Spring Training knowing he had a chance to join the Braves' bullpen at some point this season. But less than a week later, the left-handed reliever suffered a left elbow injury that proved significant enough to require Tommy John surgery.

Dr. James Andrews performed the surgical procedure on Tuesday after confirming that Feigl had a torn ulnar collateral ligament in the elbow. The standard rehab process is 12 months, so the 24-year-old reliever might be limited during the early portion of next year's Spring Training.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stults' solid outing not enough to cool off Mets

Stults' solid outing not enough to cool off Mets

NEW YORK -- As injured players continue to populate their training room, the Mets extended their impressive winning streak to 10 straight games on Wednesday night, twice coming from behind to take a 3-2 victory from the Braves at Citi Field.

Lucas Duda put the Mets ahead for good with an opposite-field RBI single off Jim Johnson in the eighth inning, after Wilmer Flores twice came through with game-tying hits. That gave the Mets their first 10-game winning streak since July 5-17, 2008.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Marty Noble

Mets-Braves rivalry rediscovering cachet

Mets-Braves rivalry rediscovering cachet

NEW YORK -- The Braves are here. Has anyone noticed? And among those who are aware of their presence, are there some who are passionate -- one way of the other -- about the "A" team? Does anyone here hate them, fear them, like them, root for or against them? Does anyone here in the Big City or in the big Citi give a wit that the second-place team in the National League East is in town for three nights to engage the first-place New York Mets?

It seemed not on Tuesday evening, when Jon Niese and troubled Trevor Cahill -- his ERA coming in was a robust 15.43 -- were to pitch opposite each other, and when the hottest team in the league put the game's longest active winning streak on the line against the surprisingly buoyant Bravos.

More

Marty Noble is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cahill encouraged by solid first four innings vs. Mets

Cahill encouraged by solid first four innings vs. Mets

NEW YORK -- Considering how ineffective he was all of last year and during his only previous start this season, there was actually reason to wonder if Trevor Cahill should have been encouraged by the four-plus innings he completed for the Braves during Tuesday night's 7-1 loss to the Mets at Citi Field.

Cahill was nearly perfect through the four innings he completed before his command wavered and second baseman Phil Gosselin committed a costly error during the decisive four-run fifth inning. But as the former All-Star pitcher walked away from yet another disappointing result, he shouldered much of the blame.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gosselin laments error that allowed four-run fifth inning

Gosselin laments error that allowed four-run fifth inning

NEW YORK -- Despite the fact that they have mixed and matched their lineup at various positions through the season's first two weeks, the Braves have proven to be one of the game's best defensive clubs.

But manager Fredi Gonzalez's decision to start Phil Gosselin at second base on Tuesday night proved costly as the utility infielder committed an error that helped the Mets roll toward a 7-1 win.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cahill unravels in the fifth as the Braves fall to Mets

Cahill unravels in the fifth as the Braves fall to Mets

NEW YORK -- Curtis Granderson drove in four runs and Jon Niese carried a shutout bid into the seventh inning as the Mets extended their winning streak to nine games with Tuesday night's 7-1 win over the Braves at Citi Field.

Cameron Maybin's two-out homer in the seventh inning accounted for the only run surrendered by Niese, who completed 6 2/3 innings with the assistance of the four-run fifth inning the Mets compiled against Braves starting pitcher Trevor Cahill.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Joe Trezza is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Braves disappointed with McKirahan after his suspension

Braves disappointed with McKirahan after his suspension

NEW YORK -- Less than 10 minutes after the Braves completed Sunday's series-clinching victory over the Blue Jays in Toronto, rookie left-handed reliever Andrew McKirahan sobered the celebratory mood by informing his teammates and manager Fredi Gonzalez that he tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug and would consequently draw an 80-game suspension from Major League Baseball.

"We won a series in Toronto against a team that is pretty good and it kind of put a little downer on that moment," Braves catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. "Whatever he did, he did and it's disappointing."

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Braves recall lefty Thomas from Triple-A

Braves recall lefty Thomas from Triple-A

NEW YORK -- Upon learning that it would be without left-handed reliever Andrew McKirahan for nearly three months, the active Braves front office began evaluating ways to strengthen its depleted bullpen via the trade market.

But with limited attractive options currently available, the Braves opted to recall left-handed reliever Ian Thomas from Triple-A Gwinnett. Thomas fills the roster spot and role previously held by McKirahan, who received a 80-game suspension on Monday for testing positive for Ipamorelin, a performance-enhancing substance, in violation of Major League Baseball Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: How much should Braves read into early success?

Beat reporter Mark Bowman fields questions from Atlanta fans

Inbox: How much should Braves read into early success?

Should we increase expectations for the Braves after the first two weeks? Or is this just a peak in a season that will have many valleys?
-- Eric S., Gilbertville, Iowa

It is never wise to put much stock in results compiled within a small sample size against a select group of competition. But if nothing else, this season's first two weeks have provided some indication that this club is capable of producing more offensive excitement than most had predicted.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gomes, Miller lead Braves to series win in Toronto

Gomes, Miller lead Braves to series win in Toronto

TORONTO -- Right-hander Shelby Miller tossed six strong innings while outfielder Jonny Gomes had a three-run double in the Braves' 5-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon at Rogers Centre.

Miller continued his rather impressive start to the year by allowing five hits and three walks with six strikeouts in another solid performance. The 24-year-old has allowed three earned runs over 16 innings since joining Atlanta as part of a deal for outfielder Jason Heyward and right-hander Jordan Walden.

More

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McKirahan receives 80-game PED suspension

Braves reliever tested positive for ipamorelin before team acquired him

McKirahan receives 80-game PED suspension

ATLANTA -- Left-handed reliever Andrew McKirahan drew the ire of some of his Braves teammates on Sunday afternoon when he revealed that he had tested positive for a banned substance and would consequently spend most of the next three months serving a suspension.

McKirahan received an 80-game suspension on Monday for testing positive for ipamorelin, a performance-enhancing substance whose usage is in violation of Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

More

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Miller has repeat success in Toronto, keeps rolling in '15

Young righty holds Blue Jays to two runs in six innings, helps Braves clinch series

Miller has repeat success in Toronto, keeps rolling in '15

TORONTO -- Shelby Miller says he was a different pitcher the first time he faced the Blue Jays, but the results he found on his second go around at Rogers Centre were similar.

Miller pitched six strong innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits while striking out six as the Braves claimed a series-clinching, 5-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Sunday. In his only other start in Toronto, the right-hander tossed a complete-game shutout as a member of the Cardinals in 2014.

More

Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.