Makeshift Lineup No Match For Pirates, Braves Fall 5-1

Justin K. Aller - Getty Images

Starling Marte had three more hits for the Pirates and Garrett Jones added a two-run homer while Atlanta's replacement lineup was held in check.

With most of Atlanta's regulars out of the starting lineup, that gave their replacements a chance to prove themselves. In the end, they pounded out eight hits, but only one run in a 5-1 loss to the Pirates.

Starling Marte was at it again, hitting a check-swing leadoff double in the first inning against Tommy Hanson and came around to score on Andrew McCutchen's groundout. Hanson was victimized further in the second: an inside fastball grazed Josh Harrison and with him at second, Clint Barmes hit a lazy pop-up that dropped for a run-scoring hit.

Atlanta cut Pittsburgh's two-run lead in half in the fourth on doubles by Lyle Overbay and Juan Francisco off Pirates starter Kevin Correia, but Marte again proved to be a thorn to the Braves. Marte led off the fifth with a single, stole second and scored on Alex Presley's double. Two more runs crossed the plate in the inning on a Garrett Jones home run.

Atlanta was denied a run in the seventh on a play at the plate. With Reed Johnson on first and two outs, Eric Hinske lined a double just out of the reach of McCutchen. The throw home was off line, but Johnson was tagged when he tried hurdling over Michael McKenry at the plate.

Freddie Freeman was ejected as a pinch-hitter in the eighth. He clearly checked his swing on a two-strike pitch in the dirt, but the third base umpire rung him up. After barking at the umpire, Freeman was given the heave-ho.

Jose Constanza was the only Atlanta hitter with more than one hit. Hanson allowed all five runs on nine hits in six innings, striking out six. This is Hanson's first start since August in which he completed six innings. The offense was 1-9 with runners in scoring position.

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