Martin Prado extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a first-inning home run to spark the Atlanta Braves to a 6-2 victory over the San Diego Padres on Thursday.
Prado, whose streak started last season against the Washington Nationals in October, finished two-for-five as Atlanta took the decider in their three-game series with the Padres and finished a six-game West Coast road trip 3-3.
“It could have been better, but it could have been worse too,” Atlanta’s Chipper Jones told reporters, having missed the first three games of the trip with a stomach injury. “Any time you come back from the West Coast and you’re .500 or better for the trip, you’re happy. It was not an easy trip, travel-wise.”
Atlanta starter Tim Hudson tossed five-and-two-third innings for his first win of the season, while highly touted rookie Jason Heyward collected two hits and two RBIs, including a run-scoring double in the eighth after the home side had clawed back to 3-2.
The win completed a stunning turnaround for Atlanta (5-4), who won the second match of the series 6-1 on Wednesday, two days after suffering an embarrassing 17-2 defeat to San Diego (3-6) in the opener.
The Braves were boosted by fine pitching by second-year starter Tommy Hanson on Wednesday and another quality outing from veteran Hudson, who has made a strong comeback from surgery for an arm injury that restricted him to just seven starts last season.
The 34-year-old Hudson had a 3-0 lead and took a shutout into the sixth inning, before allowing a solo home run to Will Venable. The Padres added another run in the sixth when Everth Cabrera came through with an RBI single.
Padres starter Mat Latos took the loss after allowing three runs in four-and-two-third innings.
Astros 5, Cardinals 1
In St Louis, Missouri, the Houston Astros avoided matching the worst start in their history, stopping an eight-game losing streak with their first win over the St Louis Cardinals in the National League.
The Astros were the only winless team left in Major League Baseball and came close to tying the team’s 0-9 opening in 1983.
Bud Norris struck out a career-high nine and held the Cardinals without an earned run for five innings. He also got his first career RBI to put the Astros ahead for good in the third.
Brewers 8, Cubs 6
In Chicago, Rickie Weeks hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning and Trevor Hoffman protected a late lead for Milwaukee.
Ryan Braun and Casey McGehee each homered and drove in three runs as the Brewers avoided being swept by Chicago.
Thursday’s other results:
• Mets 5, Rockies 0
• Nationals 7, Phillies 5
• Marlins 10, Reds 2
• Dodgers 6, D’backs 5, 10 inns
AP, CLEVELAND, OHIO
David Huff pitched a complete game and Choo Shin-soo hit a three-run homer in the eighth as Cleveland ended a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the Texas Rangers in the American League on Thursday.
Texas starter Matt Harrison (0-1) had a shutout through seven innings, before Asdrubal Cabrera reached on an error by third baseman Michael Young to start the eighth. Grady Sizemore followed with a ground ball to second, but the runners were safe when shortstop Elvis Andrus dropped the throw.
Choo then hit a pitch into the seats in right-center, spoiling what had been a pitcher’s duel between a pair of young left-handers.
Yankees 6, Angels 2
In New York, Curtis Granderson hit two triples and threw Hideki Matsui out at the plate, while Robinson Cano homered twice to lead the Yankees over Los Angeles.
Derek Jeter homered and had an RBI double for the Yankees. The World Series champions have opened the season by winning a series against three potent rivals — Boston, Tampa Bay and the Angels.
Thursday’s other results:
• Twins 8, Red Sox 0
• Yankees 6, Angels 2
• Blue Jays 7, White Sox 3
• Athletics 6, Orioles 2
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