Simmons' impressive homerless streak snapped

Simmons' impressive homerless streak snapped

ATLANTA -- Shae Simmons faced 492 batters in his professional career since the Braves drafted him in the 22nd round of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft before Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins became the first Major Leaguer to take him deep.

It was the first home run Simmons has allowed since his final year at Southwest Missouri State, when he gave up a long ball to Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's Devin Caldwell on May 18, 2012.

"It's been long enough, I guess," Simmons joked.

Rollins hit a low drive that plated the only two runs Philadelphia needed on Saturday night as Simmons suffered his first Major League loss. The ball was caught by a fan in the front row, only about a foot or two above Jason Heyward's outstretched glove.

"Rollins is a good hitter, and I left the ball just over the plate enough for him to do something with it," Simmons said.

The blast put into perspective not only how effective Simmons has proven at keeping the ball in the park, but how well the rookie has pitched since Atlanta purchased his contract from Double-A Mississippi on May 31.

Saturday night marked only the fourth time Simmons has allowed a run to come across in 20 2/3 innings. Entering Sunday, he owned a 2.18 ERA, and his eight holds ranked fourth among Braves relievers despite owning the second-lowest inning total on the active roster.

"Home runs happen; they're going to continue to happen," reliever Anthony Varvaro said. "I know he's pitched very well since he's been here, and I definitely know he hasn't given up many hits, including home runs."

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