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Marlins stop Braves, 3-1, for 10,000th loss in franchise history

Photo by Gregory Smith

Photo by Gregory Smith

ATLANTA -- The Braves started the day savoring a trade that bolstered their playoff hopes.

They ended it with the 10,000th loss in franchise history.

Ricky Nolasco scattered 12 hits, Emilio Bonifacio homered and the Florida Marlins avoided a sweep with a 3-1 victory Sunday.

A couple of hours before the game, the Braves completed a deadline deal for speedy Houston outfielder Michael Bourn. They could've used him right away, especially when fill-in Jose Constanza got thrown out twice on the basepaths.

"As an offense, we should've capitalized a little more," third baseman Brooks Conrad said. "It doesn't feel good to lose a game like that where you have so many opportunities to get runs in."

Atlanta outhit the Marlins 13-7 but left 10 runners on base, becoming only the second team in big league history with 10,000 losses. The Phillies reached that mark in 2007.

The Braves picked up their 10,000th win a couple of weeks ago, including their time in Boston and Milwaukee.

"The 10,000th win wasn't a big deal to anyone in this clubhouse," catcher David Ross said. "Same with 10,000 losses. The one thing that tells me is baseball is basically a .500 game over long periods of time. When you have a chance to be good, you need to take advantage of it -- like this year."

That's just what the Braves had in mind when they traded Jordan Schafer and three minor league pitchers to acquire Bourn, a two-time Gold Glove winner who leads the NL in stolen bases.

He had to fly in from Milwaukee and won't join the Braves until they open a series at Washington on Monday.

Struggling on offense and plagued by injuries, Bourn's new teammates can't wait for him to arrive.

"He's a great player," Dan Uggla said. "He's going to create a lot of opportunities for us to score some runs."

As it was, Nolasco (8-7) pitched out of trouble for 6 2-3 innings, retiring the side in order only once. Leo Nunez came on in the ninth for his 30th save.

"I kept getting singled to death," Nolasco said. "A couple big double plays helped. I'd rather give up 12 hits and no walks than eight hits and four walks. I just want to make them put the ball in play."

Atlanta starter Tommy Hanson (11-6) gave up all three Florida runs in six innings.

"I expect to go out and do a lot better than that," he said.

The Braves jumped ahead in the first when Constanza led off with a double, moved to third on Martin Prado's single and came home when Freddie Freeman grounded into a double play.

Florida tied it in the second, manufacturing a run after Hanley Ramirez led off with a walk. He stole second, tagged and went to third on a flyout and came home on Mike Stanton's single to center.

In the third, the Marlins went ahead for good. Omar Infante reached on an infield single and sprinted all the way around to score when Greg Dobbs doubled into the right-field corner, the ball sticking against the wall.

Bonifacio provided an insurance run in the fifth, leading off with his second homer of the year.

Constanza, in what was likely his last extensive playing time with the Braves before Bourn arrives, had three hits but a rough day on the basepaths.

In the fifth, he put down a bunt and reached on a throwing error to first. Trying to take a couple of extra bases while the Marlins chased down the loose ball, he was thrown out on a headfirst slide at third.

Then, in the seventh, he made a terrible mental blunder. Constanza led off with a single to left, only to get doubled off on Prado's soft liner to second baseman Infante.

But Constanza was hardly alone. The Braves started the sixth with two straight hits, putting runners at first and third with no outs. Alex Gonzalez popped up -- slamming his bat in disgust -- and Nolasco struck out J.C. Boscan and pinch-hitter Chipper Jones.

Jones, who hasn't started in nearly a week because of a strained quadriceps, received a big cheer from the crowd when he popped out of the dugout. Those quickly turned to groans when he fanned on three pitches.

"We're really struggling to get runners in from third with less than two outs," Uggla said. "We've got to start doing that in order to win some ballgames."

NOTES: Uggla extended his hitting streak to 22 games with an infield single in the first. ... OF Logan Morrison got the day off. He was mired in a 2-for-18 slump on the Marlins' road trip. "He's pressing. He's struggling. He needs a mental break," manager Jack McKeon said. ... Boscan picked up his first career hit. ... Braves RHP Peter Moylan, out since April 15, threw off the mound for the first time since undergoing back surgery. ... Freeman extended his hitting streak to 15 games with a seventh-inning single.