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Braves win third straight, beat Reds behind two Simmons homers

Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons points to the sky as he crosses home plate after hitting the first of his two home runs Monday to beat the Reds, 7-4.

Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons points to the sky as he crosses home plate after hitting the first of his two home runs Monday to beat the Reds, 7-4.

CINCINNATI --- Andrelton Simmons homered twice among his three hits and drove in four runs as visiting Atlanta won the series opener against the Cincinnati Reds on Monday, 7-4.

Simmons posted the first multi-homer game of his career, belting a long solo homer down the left-field line in the second off Cincinnati starter Bronson Arroyo (2-4) and connecting on a two-run shot to left in the eighth. Atlanta starter Paul Maholm (4-3) picked up the victory, allowing two runs on four hits in 5 2/3 innings.

Brandon Phillips and Zack Cozart each finished with two hits for Cincinnati, which dropped to 12-5 at home and fell three games behind idle St. Louis in the National League Central. Arroyo allowed four runs on eight hits with seven strikeouts in five innings.

Jordan Schafer followed Simmons’ second homer with a pinch-hit solo homer to right for the Braves, who extended their lead in the NL East over idle Washington to 2½ games. Justin Upton, Freddie Freeman and Dan Uggla added two hits apiece and Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth for his 10th save.

Cincinnati scored twice in the fourth to pull within 3-2 on Phillips’ double and Jay Bruce’s groundout. The Reds added two runs in the eighth on Joey Votto’s double to left and Todd Frazier’s groundout to make it 7-4, but Votto struck out with two on and two outs to end the game.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Atlanta C Brian McCann made his season debut following off-season shoulder surgery and went 0-for-4. … The Reds fell short in their first attempt to give manager Dusty Baker his 1,600th career victory. … Atlanta CF B.J. Upton struck out four times, dropping his average to .148.

Comments

VSU 11 months, 3 weeks ago

Braves win third straight? Am I missing something? They lost to the Mets Friday night, got rained out Saturday night, Won Sunday against the Mets and last night, so that would be 2nd straight win.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 11 months, 3 weeks ago

Nope, we have won 2 straight. That between-the-legs tag was pretty nifty by Simmons last night.

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VSU 11 months, 3 weeks ago

And his first two homer game of his career.

Speaking of good plays, how about that play the other night when he threw to first while falling on his behind and got the runner out. Could Simmons be the next Ozzie Smith?

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 11 months, 3 weeks ago

He has a plethora of good plays this year for sure. He has excellent range, a cannon for an arm, and a good bat. However, he has 13 gold gloves and 15 all-star games to go, but he could be that good. It appears that the sky is the limit with this kid.

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VSU 11 months, 3 weeks ago

He has a long way to go for sure, but he is young. With experience he should only get better, barring injuries.

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