EditorsNote: Changes Acuna HR to first inning in Graph 2; Changes two ATL runs to the third inning in Graph 8
Ronald Acuna Jr. hit his third home run of the season to spark the Atlanta Braves to an 8-6 win over the Colorado Rockies on Monday in Denver.
Acuna was 2-for-3, scored three runs and hit a two-run homer in the first inning to help give the Braves their sixth win in the past seven games. Dansby Swanson drove in three runs, and Nick Markakis was 3-for-4 with two RBIs for Atlanta.
The Rockies have lost four straight and eight of their past nine games.
Atlanta starter Julio Teheran (1-1) pitched five innings and allowed six runs, all coming in his last inning. He yielded five hits, struck out three and walked three. Teheran improved his career record against Colorado to 6-1 in 11 career starts but saw his ERA against the Rockies go from 2.25 to 2.87.
The struggling Atlanta bullpen closed the game with four scoreless innings. Luke Jackson, Jonny Venters, Chad Sobotka and A.J. Minter completed the game. Minter pitched around an Ian Desmond double in the ninth inning to earn his first save of the season.
Colorado starter Kyle Freeland (1-2) gave up seven runs on seven hits and four walks in five innings. He struck out three. It was a career high for runs allowed for the former first-round draft pick.
The Braves got on the board in the first inning when Josh Donaldson walked and Acuna blasted a two-run homer that was measured at 434 feet.
Atlanta scored two more runs in the third to take a 4-0 lead. Markakis stroked a bases-loaded single to center field that scored Donaldson and Freddie Freeman. The Braves missed an opportunity add more runs when Alex Jackson took a called third strike with the bases loaded to end the inning.
The Braves scratched for three more runs in the fifth. Swanson tripled home a pair of runners and scored on a wild pitch.
The Rockies put six runs on the board in the fifth inning to cut the deficit to one.
Garrett Hampson delivered a sacrifice fly and Mark Reynolds followed with a two-run, pinch-hit homer. The final blow was a long three-run homer to straightaway center by Trevor Story, his fourth. It was Story’s 11th career homer in 21 games against the Braves.
Atlanta added a run in the seventh on Swanson’s sacrifice fly.
—Field Level Media