Uptons Make History, Braves Sweep Doubleheader With Rockies

Justin Edmonds

Justin Upton breaks the franchise record for home runs in April and combined with his brother B.J. to accomplish a feat not done in 75 years. Julio Teheran also turned in a stellar performance.

In frigid 20-degree weather, Atlanta banged out six home runs and Justin Upton set a new franchise record in a doubleheader sweep of the Rockies; a 4-3 win in game one and a 10-2 drubbing in the second.

Game 1

Justin Upton started off game one on a good note, blasting home run number 10 just to the left of center field in the first inning off Rockies starter Jeff Francis. The very next inning, Dan Uggla smacked a two-run shot into the trees in center following a leadoff single by Chris Johnson, giving Atlanta a 3-0 lead.

Colorado would eventually come back to tie the score. Braves starter Mike Minor issued a leadoff walk to Troy Tulowitzki in the second inning followed with a double off the bat of Michael Cuddyer. Tulowitzki scored on Wilin Rosario's groundout and Jordan Pacheco chased home Cuddyer with a single to center, cutting Atlanta's lead to one. In the third inning, Dexter Fowler led off with a triple and scored the tying run on an infield hit by Josh Rutledge.

Evan Gattis, though, made short work of the tie score by blasting a long home run to left, his sixth long ball of the season.

The rest of the offense, outside of Reed Johnson's four hits, was silent. B.J. Upton struck out three times, as did Uggla after his second-inning homer. The team was 0/6 with runners in scoring position.

Only one hitter reached base against Minor after the third inning. He altogether threw six innings and struck out five. Craig Kimbrel allowed a one-out hit in the ninth to Rosario, but he was caught stealing to end the game.

Game 2

In the nightcap, Atlanta just unleashed a whole bunch of offense on the Rockies. Already down 1-0 on Michael Cuddyer's RBI single in the third inning, Juan Francisco belted a two-run homer in the fourth inning off Rockies starter Jon Garland propelling the Braves into the lead. Gerald Laird followed with a single, stole second (!), and scored on a single to center by Jordan Schafer.

The following inning, the Upton brothers introduced the Coors Field crowd to a bit of history. B.J. led off the fifth with a long home run to left just inside the foul pole; on the very next pitch, Justin blasted one of his own to right off the bullpen wall, giving Atlanta a 5-1 lead. The home runs accomplished two things: first, the back-to-back homers were the first by brothers in a major-league game since 1938 when Hall-of-Famers Paul and Lloyd Waner did it; second, Justin's homer set a new franchise record for home runs in April with his 11th with still six games left in the month.

While the offense cruised, Julio Teheran turned in a spectacular performance. The third-inning run was all he allowed in seven innings of work to go along with three strikeouts and a pickoff. He even contributed a base hit in Atlanta's three-run fourth inning. His outing stood in stark contrast to his previous three when he gave up a total of 13 runs in 16 innings; a very welcome improvement indeed.

B.J. Upton's sacrifice fly in the sixth inning upped Atlanta's lead to 6-1 before the rest of the offense dropped one more crooked number on the scoreboard in the ninth. Justin Upton doubled off reliever Josh Outman with one out to chase home Ramiro Pena. Freddie Freeman walked and Juan Francisco doubled to right to score Justin. Gerald Laird capped the inning with a two-run single off Wilton Lopez.

Jordan Walden allowed a run on three hits in the ninth, completing the doubleheader sweep.

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