Upton powers Braves past Marlins
Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Justin Upton drove in three runs to lead the Atlanta Braves to a 5-2 victory over the Miami Marlins in the opener of a three-game set on Friday.
Upton hit a two-run homer in the sixth. Jason Heyward finished 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored for Atlanta, which won its third straight game.
David Carpenter (5-3) earned the win despite giving up a home run in the seventh. Starter Ervin Santana surrendered just one run on five hits and four walks with seven strikeouts over six innings of work.
Marcell Ozuna went 3-for-4 with an RBI and Jordany Valdespin homered for the Marlins, who have lost three straight and five of their last six.
The Braves went ahead in the seventh. Andrelton Simmons got aboard with a bunt single off Chris Hatcher (0-2) and Ramiro Pena's liner deflected off the glove of first baseman Garrett Jones to place runners at the corners with no outs. Heyward's grounder into left brought home Simmons to give Atlanta the lead.
"I can't really say it was a mistake. I thought I caught it," Jones said about his error. "It had some hook-spin on it, it might have just spun right out of my glove."
Pena was thrown out at third on Emilio Bonifacio's bunt and Freddie Freeman struck out. Upton stroked a grounder up the middle that rolled under the glove Ozuna in center field and allowed both runners to score for a 5-2 score.
Jordan Walden tossed a scoreless eighth inning and Craig Kimbrel shut the door in the ninth for his 40th save of the season.
The Marlins threatened early in the first. Santana issued three straight walks after getting the first out to load the bases, but bounced back to strike out Jones and get Ozuna to line out to right to leave the runners stranded.
Miami started the scoring in the sixth. Casey McGehee and Jones each hit one- out singles. Ozuna smacked a liner down the right-field line for a double that scored McGehee, but Jones was thrown out at home on the play.
The Braves responded in the home half. Freeman worked a leadoff walk before Upton belted a two-run shot to center for his 26th home run of the season.
"I was in there trying to be aggressive and make something happen," said Upton on his home run.
Carpenter took over for Santana in the seventh and served up a solo shot to pinch-hitter Valdespin, who tied the game at 2-2.
Miami starter Tom Koehler gave up two runs on four hits and three walks with six strikeouts across six frames ... Upton now has 91 RBI this season ... Atlanta went 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position while Miami went 1- for-4 ... The season series is tied, 7-7.
08/30 00:03:43 ET